Stardock announced this week that its Object Desktop 2018 suite is now available, along with limited-time special pricing. There are many reasons to consider this set of useful software. But those looking forward to the Windows 10 Sets feature—which may or may not make it in time for “Redstone 4”—may be particularly interested, as Object Desktop 2018 includes this functionality via a new utility called Groupy.
As you may recall, Stardock announced its plans for Groupy—which adds tabs to virtually any window in Windows 7, 8.x, or 10—in mid-November. Two weeks later, Microsoft revealed that it, too, was looking to add tabs to windows, albeit only in Windows 10. This feature, called Sets, could ship in the next version of Windows 10—called “Redstone 4”, or RS4—or it could be delayed until RS5.
Then, in December, Stardock released Groupy as a standalone $10 app.Now, it is available as part of the Object Desktop 2018 suite of Windows personalization utilities. Which is now on sale for a limited time for half-price: If you don’t own a previous version of the suite, you can buy Object Desktop 2018 for $25, half the normal $50 pricing. (And upgraders can save even more.)
I’ll be reviewing Object Desktop 2018 soon, though I must admit I am particularly interested in Groupy, which looks fantastic. But here’s a quick rundown of what’s available in this suite:
Groupy. This utility lets you organize your apps into tabbed groups: Just drag one window onto another to group them into a single tabbed window.
Fences. This utility helps you declutter your desktop by organizing your icons into specific areas.
Start10. The now-classic Start menu replacement.
Multiplicity. Essentially a software-based keyboard/mouse switch, this utility lets you control two PCs with a single keyboard and mouse.
SpaceMonger. This utility helps you manage disk space usage on your PC and other PCs on your network.
WindowBlinds. This classic customization utility helps you change the look and feel of windows, the taskbar, and more.
DeskScapes. Similar to the DreamScene feature from Windows Vista, DeskScapes lets you configure your desktop with animations and videos instead of still images.
ShadowFX. This utility lets you configure windows with black or colored drop shadows.
Launch. This utility adds a macOS-like dock to the (Windows 8) Start screen.
IconPackager. This one lets you change all your Windows icons at once with custom icon packages.
WindowFX. This customization utility lets you personalize Windows with animations and special effects.
Tiles. This utility works like virtual desktops except that you can organize and access your different desktops from a pane on the right side of the screen.
I think of Stardock’s utilities as “where Microsoft gets its ideas for future Windows versions,” and many of the offerings in Object Desktop 2018 fall neatly into that group. If Microsoft isn’t looking closely at this stuff, it should be.