by FrostApps team on 2010-07-21 22:26:01
Version reviewed: InfoFind 1.0.767
If you don't know where to look, obtaining information from your PC sometimes can be a tricky deal especially when it comes to peeking into the smallest details, hidden deep "under the hood". Sure you do not have to be on top of everything, to know all the details, if you do not want to but keeping yourself informed to some point definitely has its advantages and most certainly cannot hurt a bit.
To step up and lend you a hand InfoFind easily gathers a wide variety of information, allowing you to stay in loop no matter what, while also enabling the use of several other functions needed for everyday work. Basically it binds files and data from several different programs to all-in-one solution in order to handle many computing tasks at one place. Everything you do, every single action, takes its place within the main form in order to ensure better visibility and allow multiple windows to be opened at the same time. In fact, this approach, especially in combination with a big widescreen monitor definitely makes it easier to work with, and indeed provides better visibility. On the other hand, the downside is that dealing with multiple forms simultaneously is only possible if the windows are not maximized, otherwise windows will be sorted one onto another and work will be possible only in the active one, the latest one opened. So, simple and logical question for developers, where are the tabs?
The main screen is divided into two parts, the default main menu on the left, which can be moved if more space is needed and the main form on the right side. All forms(functions) can be accessed through the left menu which contains four categories including Information, Files, Programs and Databases or through same called menus on the top with addition of two more including Computer and Media. Even if at first glance they look the same, the menus from the left and from above for some reason do not include the same sub categories. Obviously this is due to the fact that non-document forms can be accessed from menus at the top, at least as explained in the help file but if you look closer you'll see that something is wrong here since sub categories (forms) are mixed up from one category to another. For example the "Computer History" form is placed in Information category on the left and in Computer Category on the top and so on!?
To get the full picture, here are the combined categories with subcategories from both menus. Information - (Computer History, Dictionary/Thesaurus, Calculator, measurements, Roman Numerals, Notes, Computer Security, Text Encryption, Color Picker and Network Users and Objects); Files - (File Viewer, Picture Viewer, Encrypt/decrypt Files, File Search, Rename Files, File Icons and Large Files Viewer); Programs - (Favorite Programs, Running Programs and Startup Programs); Databases - (Database Applications, Open a Database and Data Finder); Media - (Internet, Pictures, Music and Videos); Computer - (Computer History, System Information, Favorite Programs, Running Programs, Startup Programs, Installed Programs and Forms and controls).
As you can see the list is quite impressive and looks like the InfoFind does not lack number of forms(functions) whatsoever. But is a lot of functions always a good thing? Anyway, we will cover only the major categories that InfoFind offers, simply because it would take really a lot of time and energy to describe every single one option.
First, a nicely added touch for most forms is reflected in simple yet to the point written descriptions that provide insight into the specific form. It is actually a kind of a small introduction that describes each form individually and can be accessed by left clicking on most forms or through the welcome screen that is active at the start of the program.
Now, let's start with the "Computer History" form. Here you can track all activities on your computer for a certain period of time including Windows, Internet and Programs activities. Easily you can see detailed info about latest accessed folders, start run entries, recently viewed documents, recently viewed web pages, recently opened programs, images or other multimedia. When it comes to Internet history most of the major browsers are supported including IE, Firefox, Opera, Safari, and Google Chrome. Very nice, comprehensive form that digs up all the history for you with no effort whatsoever. Also, just to mention, the complete history can be deleted with just one click or if you prefer you can choose to delete one entry at the time.
Next category is "System Information", which as the name says allows you to peek deep into the smallest details of your system. It shows you system version, basic hardware information, environment variables and folders in the Program Files directory. Yes, this is definitely not the most comprehensive System Information viewer we have ever seen, but it is sufficiently detailed and more importantly it serves its purpose.
The program also has built in web browser, however we could not help but notice that, unfortunately as we feared, browser's engine is based on old IE6. Who uses IE6 these days anyway? During testing we absolutely did not want to waste too much time using it, and we were right, it proved to be same old IE6. Because browser is wrapped around IE6 and simply due to the fact that compared to any newer browser it stand no chance, we really don't see any point of browsers existence in this form.
As for some other forms such as File viewer, File search, these forms are simply no different than the default Windows tools, what more they are completely the same. With that being said, let's focus on InfoFind's intent and the overall impression it left on us. Since its first start, while we were testing InfoFind we were constantly having troubles understanding its intent. Though, InfoFind is filled with forms, its intent is not clear and all we can see is a bunch of unrelated categories that gave us the impression that the developer who built this tool was led by the assumption somewhat like "provide everything, someone will use something". No can do, quality is not something that can be compensated with the number of functions.
Now concerning looks, everything looks basic, as some residual skin back from the early days of development process. There is nothing fancy here, no shiny buttons or fancy hovers, wherever you look, only a sense of the past and the era of Windows XP. InfoFind really needs a little more face lifting.
To summarize, all in all this tool definitely has potential, lots of useful material, but it is all somehow badly composed which casts a shadow on all the good things this tool has to offer. Built as such it can only cause resentment to a larger number of users out there. On the bright side, most of it is here, developer just needs to reconsider his approach and bring InfoFind back on track. We are confident that true quality is yet to be seen.