RunMe is a versatile launcher that looks (and feels) good

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RunMe is a free program launcher that can dock into sides of your screen and become available on mouse-over.

It is similar to the Windows’ start menu in its look and feel, in that allows for placing shortcuts in folders within folders. It supports special effects, animation, transparency, and a good number of very good looking skins.

Nothing beats a good launcher for quickly re-inventing the way you work with your computer.

I did not expect much of this launcher at first but after trying it I found it to be very robust and surprisingly smart-looking. here are some notes on this program:

  • Docks to the edge of your screen: and can be invosked by a mouse over. Can be placed on the left, right side, or top edges of your screen and dragged and dropped for optimum placement.
  • Drag and drop: shortcuts can simply be dragged into the launcher in order to be added to the list. You can re-order items by dragging them around while pressing Shift (and, while pressing Shift, you can remove them altogether if you drag them out of the launcher).
  • RunMe Screenshot - upper left edge, buttonsEye candy: the launcher supports transparency and animation, and you can customize the way it behaves and looks in the settings (e.g. how you want it to behave when you mouse over, degree of transparency, change the color, sound if any, whether or not to display a ’tab’, glow, zoom, or bounce effects, etc.) But it also performs well in that it runs smoothly and without hiccups.
  • Skins: RunMe comes with a handful of skins that mostly are very well done/good looking indeed. Download more skins here.
  • Elements supported: include groups (which behave as folder), program shorcuts, links to folder, My Computer, Recycle bin, Run prompt, Control Panel, Show desktop, Restart/Shut Down/Standby, Separators, and a handful of other elements.
  • Replacing Windows Start menu: it is possible to use RunMe in place of Windows’ own ’Start Menu’. You can activate this in the settings. This will work in Windows 2000 and XP only according to the documentation.
  • Icons: you can change the icons of any element as per your liking. RunMe will open individual icon files (.ICO, .PNG) or libraries (.DLL, .ICL) as well as grab icons from .EXE files.
  • No install necessary: just unzip and go. The program stores all settings and information within its own directory and, aside from the option to place itself in the Windows startup folder, does not seem to write anything into the registry.
  • Memory use: approx 22 megs – which is quite reasonable in my opinion.

The verdict: a nice launcher that looks good and behaves very intuitively. It somewhat reminds me of StabLauncher in that it docks to the side of the screen but the similarity ends there. Try it out you will probably like it.

Version Tested: 0.8.5

Compatibility: WinAll; no info on Vista.

Go to program page to download the latest version (approx. 1.36 megs) – scroll down the page for the download button.