StartClock: Save Taskbar Space

closeThis post was published 10 years 8 months 18 days ago. A number of changes have been made to the site since then, so please contact me if anything is broken or seems wrong.

You know how Windows has that clock in the taskbar? It takes up a good 50 pixels on my screen, and that’s valuable space where taskbar buttons or tray icons could be. And I know exactly what that big (green) button in the lower left does, so why do I need it to say “start” all the time?

With the freeware StartClock, you can change this:

to this:

What it does, through some AutoHotKey magic, is put a clock where your computer’s taskbar usually says “start”. The Start button functions normally; it just has numbers in the place where letters usually call home. That means you can turn off the clock in the taskbar (right-click the taskbar, click Properties, and uncheck the “Show the clock” box) and enjoy a few more pixels for your buttons and tray icons.

While the program does exactly what it is supposed to do, and is highly customizable (to the point of displaying a fake time, hard-coded, or even alternate text — prank time!), it takes up about 6 MB of RAM, which might be a bit much if your system is tight on resources. My mom’s computer has only 384 MB of RAM, so I would be hesitant to put too many tweaks on that PC, but my GB has enough room for them. Unless I try to play games, which I don’t do much.

Besides the seemingly large amount of memory the program takes up, it also makes the Start button bigger, putting back some of the pixels you gain by hiding the default clock. The savings are definitely less than 50 pixels. I may or may not keep it around for very long, but it’s still a neat idea. I quit using the program right after I wrote this post, actually. You might find it useful, but to me it’s kind of clunky. It made for good GIMP experience, though.

If you’re interested in downloading StartClock and taking it for a spin, head over to DonationCoder. Check out some of the other programs while you’re there; that one page has a bunch of other maybe-useful apps to pick from. Though they might all end up being as iffy as StartClock; I haven’t tried them all, by any measure.

dgw

I am an avid technology and software user, in addition to being reasonably well-versed in CSS, JavaScript, HTML, PHP, Python, and (though it still scares me) Perl. Aside from my technological tendencies, I am also a theatre technician, sound designer, violinist, singer, and actor.

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