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Author Topic: RocketDock minireview  (Read 7495 times)


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RocketDock minireview
« on: February 10, 2008, 06:38:28 AM »
Basic Info

App NameRocketDock
App URLhttp://rocketdock.com/
App Version Reviewed1.3.5
Test System Specs
Laptop Acer 1690: centrino m 2.0ghz, 1gb ddr2, win XP Pro SP2
Supported OSesWindows 2000/XP/Vista
Support MethodsOnline help. Can't find email
Pricing SchemeFreeware
Reviewer Donation LinkDonate to jgpaiva, the Author
Relationship btwn. Reviewer and Product none


RocketDock is a dock program, similar to ObjectDock, YZDock, etc.
I have already used previous versions, but now i was about to try it again and thought i could take you on this trip too ;)

Ok, so after a 6MB download and a standard install.. Here's how it looks:

That's the default bar, with 2 applications minimized. Notice how the msn-messenger window and the x-chat window got minimized to the Dock.

Both msn and x-chat have the "blink taskbar button" feature.. Let's see if it works while they are minimized to the Dock. (notice that i don't have vista, thus i can't test the live previews).
Ok... Sweet, the blink icon works, the app starts jumping up and down on the dock.

Right, so let's open the options.
Screenshot-08_02_10,11_47_40.pngRocketDock minireview
ALWAYS ON TOP???? Damn you people! Ok, that's like so bad that if i wasn't doing this review I'd given up on it already.

So.. on to the preferences. The first page shows some interesting options. I specially like "open running application instance".  I tested it and it works pretty well.

The second tab has some dock behaviour settings (like zoo, zoom effect, quality, etc). Nothing very interesting here.

Third tab.. Position. Cool, it can be placed on any position on the edges and even off the edges, with an offset up to 128px. And it updates the position in realtime! I'm surprised :)

Next.. Style! Ok.. Lots of themes to choose from and updates on realtime too. Cool :)
Screenshot-08_02_10,12_08_20.pngRocketDock minireview

Now on to "Behaviour": just a few options like "autohide" or "icon attention effect".

Ok.. I just found a small problem: Screenshot Captor won't minimize anymore. Not good.

Who is this app designed for:

Anyone who doesn't use FARR, will potentially be interested in RocketDock ;)
It's a great launcher, and the fact that it can dock running apps just makes it even better ;)

The Good

Well.. Invariably, in this kind of apps, the first thing we notice is how it looks good. RocketDock makes a great impression in that field, with lots of pre-bundled themes (and possibility of downloading even more from the web).
It also has a beautiful  :-* minimize animation (even though it's a bit too slow).
Interesting also, is the fact that it uses high quality icons, even when windows doesn't use them:

Minimize running apps is a great feature, and apparently now it's working way better than the last time i tested it, as it only gives me trouble with SC.

The needs improvement section

Ok.. There are 2 obvious items in this section: the "preferences always on top" "feature" and the minimize running apps problem.

About the first: What's up with that? It's not a good idea, it's annoying as hell and anyone who does that should be ran over by a truck.

About the second: there have been huge improvements since the last time i tried this, now it really is usable (last time apps would disappear, or stay on screen when minimized, etc etc etc). BUT it still has problems with SC, which can't be minimized through the minimize button, and when i minimize it with ahk, it gets in the dock, but still remains on screen in the following form:

There's also 3 other problems:
It doesn't have tabs on the bars like ObjectDock which might be useful for some, and it doesn't support disk browsing like LaunchBar Commander does (or any other menus, for that matter).
It also doesn't support tray icon docking, which doesn't allow it to fully replace the windows taskbar :(

Why I think you should use this product

Overall, it's a pretty good app, and way more mature than the last time i tried it. Right now, and while mouser's LaunchBar Commander is "under development", this is a cool free alternative to ObjectDock, specially for those that don't need to launch lots of programs.
It's easy to configure, easy to add and remove programs from, and looks good. Definitely recommendable.

How does it compare to similar apps

Well.. I think i sort of already covered that in the above points :)


Even though I'm not much of a launch-bar kind of guy, i think this'd be the kind of stuff I'd recommend to people who like Mac OSX's Dock or are just looking for a simple launchbar to launch their frequent shortcuts.
« Last Edit: February 11, 2008, 01:01:17 PM by jgpaiva »


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Re: RocketDock minireview
« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2008, 12:31:04 PM »
I use it for quick internet links.  :Thmbsup:
It saves me time going through all my bookmarks.
I keep the ones I visit most frequently in RocketDock.

It has the option to change the default icon to the icon of your choice.

If you use - http://www.aignes.com/deadlink.htm ,

You will have all your icons for your bookmarks in a folder, and this folder can be added to the icon changing options.

I don't use it for 'running programs', that's what my taskbar is for, for me anyway.


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Re: RocketDock minireview
« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2008, 12:33:29 AM »
Nice work jgpaiva!  :)