Emaroo is a free utility for browsing most recently used (MRU) file lists of programs like Visual Studio, Word, Excel, PowerPoint and more. Quickly open files, jump to their folder in Windows Explorer, copy them (and their path) to the clipboard - or run your own tools on the MRU items! And all this with just a few keystrokes or mouse clicks.
About this Release
A long weekend (with much more time at my hand than I originally thought) was a good opportunity to re-think the UI of the feature that has given me the most headaches in Emaroo: The import/export of configuration settings.
Importing/exporting the configuration is necessary (at least for me), because I use Emaroo daily, on virtually every computer I get my hands on, and at the same time tricky, because
- Not all systems require the same configuration – they configurations are similar, but not the same.
- I make changes to the configuration in different places.
- I don’t want to care about making changes in a specific order and/or syncing them the configurations immediately.
In Emaroo 3.0.0, the dialog for importing configurations showed (more or less) how the configuration would look like after the import – OK at first, but getting rather complex pretty fast.
With Emaroo 3.1.0, the import dialog now only shows the delta between the two configurations.
Here’s an example where I import a pretty large configuration into a similar configuration. The two configuration differ only regarding a specific custom action (“Search in FileLocator”):
- Visual Studio 2017 doesn’t have this custom action yet, so it should be added by default – with an option to ignore it.
- Visual Studio 2015 already had the action, but the imported custom action is newer, so it should replace the existing by default.
- Visual Studio 2013 also had the action, but the imported custom action is older, so the default is to keep the existing custom action – with an option to choose the imported one.
This is what it looks like:
Looking at the screenshot one might wonder why the original solution didn’t look like this in the first place… As often the case, getting to a seemingly easy solution takes a couple of iterations. And sometimes even removing features.
In this case, the import dialog in Emaroo 3.0.0 had the feature to remove parts of the configuration during import. That was possible because of the approach to show the result of the import. But possible does not necessarily mean useful. Deciding to leave out the feature opened up the opportunity to go with the delta approach, which in the end led to a better UI.
Emaroo 3.1.0 in a Nutshell
- Changed: Major overhaul of import dialog UI, greatly reducing complexity when importing into configurations that have many custom actions and/or installed applications.
- Changed: UI tweaks to export dialog.
- Added: Check for new version on help page (only on-demand, not performed automatically).
- Changed: The number of custom actions is no longer limited to 10, even though only the first 10 actions can be executed via hotkey. Removing the limit is intended to support scenarios where a larger number of custom actions exists temporarily (e.g. when trying out custom actions).
- Fixed: Copy/paste of custom actions didn't always change the ID when it was necessary.
- Fixed: Various corner cases in import/export.