Remember WinFS? Yes, I am talking about the super-hyped, game changing file system from Microsoft that was supposed to be one of the pillars of Windows Longhorn (Vista). After numerous missteps, Microsoft ditched WinFS back in 2006. It’s a pity that WinFS couldn’t be realised, as it really did sound revolutionary.
So why am I rambling on about WinFS after all these years? The reason is Tabbles. Tabbles is a Windows Explorer alternative, which gives you a taste of what WinFS could have been. Don’t worry; you don’t need to format your disk to a brand new file system. Just download and run the relatively smallish installer to get started. In fact, if you prefer, you can also use the portable version, which doesn’t require installation.
The Tabbles philosophy is that you don’t need to remember where your documents are. Just remembering what they are about should be sufficient (to locate them). This utility allows you to organise files and folders into Tabbles (tag-bubble), which are both virtual folders and tags. Just like you do with tags, you can associate multiple Tabbles with a single file. It also has a pretty powerful auto-tag engine, which can automatically put files into Tabbles based on a predefined set of criterion. Tabbles can be used to even tag and organise online resources, tweets and email.
As mentioned earlier, Tabbles doesn’t integrate itself with Windows Explorer, and instead acts as an Explorer replacement. Tabbles was designed from ground up to look good and look good it does. The interface is slick enough to grab attention and make people actually want to use the utility. Make no mistake; Tabbles is a powerful application, which is aimed at sophisticated users. Yet at no point does it appear complicated or cluttered.
Once you have tagged your files appropriately, Tabbles can be a huge time saver. However, the main problem is that you need to spend a considerable amount of time settings up Tabbles. Auto-tagging is definitely a big help, but you will need to rely on manual tagging on a lot of instances to get the best out of this app. In the end, Tabbles does come off as being better suited to professionals and academics than casual users.
The free version allows tagging of only 1000 files, which makes it essentially useless. But, it will give you an idea of what Tabbles can do for you. The full version will set you back by 29.99$ for the home and portable licenses. The corporate edition, which features sharable Tabbles, costs 97.49$.
Tabbles Home License Giveaway
Tabbles has graciously agreed to sponsor 3 home licenses. Tabbles is a fantastic concept, which grows on you as you continue to fiddle around with it. Here’s how you can win a Tabbles Home license worth $29.99.
Comment on this post. Make sure you use a valid e-mail address. (compulsory)
Retweet this message and post your status update URL in the comments section to get a bonus entry into the lucky draw. (optional)
Subscribe to my e-mail newsletter to get a bonus entry into the lucky draw. After subscribing let me know by leaving a comment. (optional)
The contest is open to everyone and will close on August 3, 2010 at 12:00 IST.
* In case of dispute, all decisions made by me shall be final.
Download Tabbles (5.56 MB)
Version Reviewed: 1.5.9 rev8
License: Shareware (Limited to 1000 tagged files)
Cost: $29.99 for Home Edition
Operating System: Windows 7, Vista, XP