Window Ruler: easily measure any on-screen object

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Window Ruler is a free on-screen measurement “ruler” tool that offers a number of interesting features, including portability, the ability to “snap-to” any on-screen object, and the ability to automatically resize to a number of common predefined size profiles.

Ever needed to measure something on your screen? Window Ruler can help. This is a program that can quickly measure the resolution (height and width) of any object on the screen.

It works in two ways (a) it will snap to any on-screen object that Windows recognizes simply by dragging and dropping a ball-shaped cursor onto that object, or (b) by manually resizing and aligning the square-shaped ruler onto anything that is visible on screen.

Here are more notes on this program:

  • Another Window Ruler ScreenshotDisplaying the size coordinates: aside from reading the coordinates on the “ruler” itself, the size is displayed in the lower right hand corner. Unfortunately this is always displayed in a black font and can be difficult to read at times; alternately you can hover your mouse over the red ball in the upper left corner in order to receive a tooltip with the size displayed on it.
  • Size “units”: offers measurement in pixels, points, inches, centimeters, and millimeters.
  • Window Ruler context menuPre-defined size profiles: you can right-click on Window Ruler in order to transform it into several pre-defined sizes (320×200, 640×480, 800×600, 1024×768, 1280×1024). The is useful insofar as it can give a visual frame that can inform the user as to how their we page or application will look under different resolutions. (Note: while the ruler will snap to the pre-defined sizes your app or browser window will not do this; use the excellent Sizer if you want this).
  • Screenshots: offers the option to capture a screenshot (into the clipboard) for any object or window that the ruler is snapped onto.
  • Portability: offers an installer version as well as a portable version that you can unzip and run.
  • Memory usage: 8 megs in memory, which is not a lot but it hardly matters either way as you can simply only run this program when you need it and it doesn’t have to be in memory at all times.

Wish list (or how this program can be even better):

  • I found it a bit difficult to “grab onto” the bottom right hand corner of Window Ruler in order to resize it (resizing each side separately is easier). It would be great if this was made easier.
  • The size coordinates in the bottom right can be difficult to read. It would be great if they were automatically displayed in a light colored font on dark backgrounds and dark colored font on light background.
  • Would be great if the program would resize any window that it snapped onto, similar to the aforementioned Sizer.

The verdit: there are many freeware screen-ruler type out there, including the previously reviewed PMeter and a program which I discovered recently called Rulers. What I like about Window Ruler, however, is the option to “snap onto” other windows/objects which makes it easier to measure many identifiable on-screen elements. Overall if you need a ruler-type program I recommend this wholeheartedly.

Version Tested: 1.1.8

Compatibility: WinAll.

Go to the program home page to download the latest version (approx 1.5 megs).