The Shareware Review People


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Type of Program: File Management
Supported Platforms: Win 3x/9x/ME/NT4/2000/XP
Company Name: Cottonwood Software
Version: 2.11d
Price: NEW PRICE $19.95 (was $29.95)
Installed size: 644K (Windows 95) 500K (Windows 3.1X,)


How many times, in the midst of a "Save As" operation have you realized you needed a new folder for your save item, or noticed unwanted junk in the target folder you'd love to delete on the spot? With File-Ex 98 (and File-Ex) , you can use your active file dialogs to manage ALL files shown in your window -- save, rename, copy, move, delete, find, and make new folders -- without having to fire up a separate file manager when you're done. File-Ex 98 enhances the Open and Save functions of Windows 95/98, and File-Ex makes Windows 3.X feel like it's been upgraded! (I used File-Ex 98, so for more information on the 16-bit File-Ex, refer to the product web site.)

Housekeeping on your drive(s) becomes a lot easier. And File-Ex 98 even makes downloading through your browser nicer, since your target Download folder(s) are accessible in a click. No more climbing down the Windows explorer tree. File-Ex 98 becomes a seamless part of your file dialogs, and it can optionally place an icon in the system tray for easy access to options-settings and training functions. It doesn't need a bunch of RAM to run in the background, and takes very little drive space.

File-Ex 98 not only gives you a pull-down menu of most recently used files and folders, but also allows you to specify Favorite files and folders too (up to 25 of each) for fast access. A new sizing option lets you make the File-Ex 98 viewer as big or small as you like. There are numerous options for enabling/disabling selected applications, changing File-Ex 98 appearances, Windows 95/98 interaction, and more. For any highlighted file in the File-Ex 98 window, you'll also see complete file information in the status line below the bank of control buttons.

File-Ex 98 works with most applications' file dialogs, but is easily "trained" to any application that might not automatically recognize it. Training is easy: Once you've opened a Save-As/Open dialog, just open File-Ex, click the Learn New Dialog button, and step-by-step instructions make the rest easier than recording a macro. ( I've added File-Ex function to my IE4 and Browse dialogs, and it works great.)

This add-on tool is easy to install and use, and there's a complete "pictorial tour" at the product web site that demonstrates all its possibilities. Should you find a conflict with the dialog of an installed program, there's also a detailed support section at the web site (plus a good help file in the program), and good email support as well. You can try it for 30 days, fully functional, and if after that period you'll lose certain functionality. File-Ex 98 is also available in a German-language edition.

To install after downloading the Zip file, just unzip to a temporary folder and then run the included Setup program to install it in the directory of your choice. But if you've been running a previous version, just make sure you install File-Ex 98 into its own folder -- don't try to install over a pre-2.12 version.

User Friendly:
Ease of Installation:
Reviewed by Bobbie Crowell
ICQ # 9407183
You can purchase this program from Cottonwood's web site at Credit cards  or by mail order.

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