VueMinder is one of the best desktop calendar program for Windows with an impressive number of features, which until recently, was available only on paid commercial license. Last week they released a new version of their software, and with it released a freeware edition of the program – VueMinder Lite.
The Lite version doesn’t have as many bells and whistles as the Pro version but even after stripping down, it still leaves you a wide array of features, sufficient for most users. Let us look at some of the features that makes VueMinder worthy to be on your desktop.
Integrated Desktop Calendar: VueMinder Calendar integrates a monthly Desktop Calendar into the Windows desktop. This isn’t a mere image of the calendar or something but an interactive, simplified version of the Main Window. You can navigate through days and months and view events. You can even create new events, or edit existing ones or delete them right on the integrated calendar. The Desktop Calendar’s size, position, and transparency can be adjusted.
Multiple Calendars: On VueMinder you can add multiple public calendars, such as holidays for different countries, BBC Radio schedule, religious calendar, astronomical events calendar, solar eclipse calendar and so on. You can also create your own multiple calendars to categorize your events. For example, create a ‘Birthdays’ calendar for getting birthday reminders. These calendars can be quickly toggled on and off in the main view so that they don’t clutter.
Subscribing to Calendars: You can subscribe to any online calendar that follows the Standard iCalendar Format. If the calendar requires user authentication, there is provision to enter your login information.
Creating Events: Events can be added without even needing to display the main VueMinder Calendar through Windows system tray icon. You can quickly reschedule events by dragging and dropping them to a different date or time slot. If your event is a recurring one, you can specify a recurrence pattern for the event. The pattern can be either daily, weekly, monthly or even yearly. It can have specific start and stop time, specific date range, occur at a certain weekday etc. The flexibility is wonderful.
Backup and Restore: VueMinder provides automatic daily or manual backups and ability to restore calendar from saved backups.
Fully Customizable Interface: The calendar is fully customizable – change font type, size, color, background color etc. You can change the first day of the week and adjust the number of days or weeks that are displayed in the Calendar View. If your weekends are generally free of tasks, you can “compress” the weekend to save space on the calendar or allow more space for your weekdays. You can also toggle on and off various panes on the program’s main window.
Keyboard Shortcuts: VueMinder supports a number of keyboard shortcuts to create events, go to a date, and other common windows shortcuts like copy/paste and search. Unfortunately, these aren’t customizable.
The Pro version of VueMinder provides even more features like getting reminders by email and SMS, exporting calendar to Excel, syncing with Microsoft Outlook calendar, publishing calendars on the web for sharing with others, themes and more customizability options. If you can afford the 40 odd dollars, it’s worth every penny.