March 19, 2006

The dope on DOpus

I first discussed Windows Explorer replacements a while back right here on this blog. Chris who read the entry and who was doing an article on Explorer replacements contacted me after reading that entry because he wanted to ask me about PowerDesk and Explorer Plus. (Incidentally, Novatix, the company who released Explorer Plus, seems to have removed all traces of the product from their site and seem to be positioning themselves as a security company now – weird :p)

Anyway, by the time Chris contacted me, I had switched over from both PowerDesk and Explorer Plus to what in my opinion is the new champ amongst explorer replacements – Directory Opus. I told Chris that I was now using and after some discussion back and forth about it, Chris tried it out and he seems to be impressed by it as well :) In fact, he went so far as to write to the folks over at GPSoftware, the developers of Directory Opus, and tell them that it was my blog entry which got him on to DOpus. However, at that point I realized that I didn’t really have a blog entry about DOpus :p All the praise that heaped on DOpus had been via e-mail. I decided to rectify this omission with this new blog entry :)

The problem with PowerDesk (and Explorer Plus) had always been the fact that the software was prone to inexplicable glitches. Sometimes, the scrollbar on the directory treeview would become huge (about 10 times the normal size) and you would not be able to scroll anything. The only solution was to restart the application. At other times, one or other directory pane would not refresh and the app would just sit there. Since PowerDesk and Explorer Plus shared the same code base, both apps appeared to have the same issues. So in came Directory Opus and I must confess, that I have not had any issues at all with DOpus.

DOpus is at once more powerful than PowerDesk and more configurable. DOpus seems to be built upon the idea of building blocks. If you are of a technical bent, the app has certain basic commands which can be chained together to perform more complex tasks. If you are not technically oriented, then you can simply use it as is and still reap the benefits of a superior explorer replacement. The split views, the tabbed displays which allow you to have many differing views of the same data, the regular expression based renaming facility, the plugins which enhance the functionality of the app – these are just a few of my favourite things about DOpus.

About the only complaint that I have about this marvel of an app is the price. Where most shareware apps seem to be in the $25 – $50 range, currently DOpus comes in at about $60 (I thought I paid about $70 when I bought it but I might be mistaken). But buy it I did even at that price because after looking high and low, I have not been able to find another Explorer replacement which has the stability and the functionality of Directory Opus :)

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Tags: Software
Posted by Fahim at 7:05 am   Comments (0)