1000+ Features, 1 Interface
Well, to be honest, we didn’t count them. But there are tons of great features that make LaunchBar the most versatile keyboard driven productivity utility you’ve ever used.
- Adaptive Abbreviation Search
- Application Switcher
- Clipboard History
- Quick Look support
- Instant Send
- Instant Open
- Invoke commands from the Services menu
- Run AppleScripts, Shell Scripts and Automator Workflows
- Comprehensive set of built-in actions
- Browse and Sub-Search
- Navigate through files and folders
- iTunes library browsing and playback control
- Open web bookmarks and history
- Access contacts
- Categories to browse items of the same kind
- Web Searches
- Spotlight Searches
- Create calendar events and reminders
- Powerful, extensible Calculator
- Open System Preferences panes
- Switch Network Locations
- Fast User Switching
- Versatile File Operations: Move, Copy, Rename, New Folder, …
- Access invisible files and file package contents
- Access your Apple Development Resources
- Scriptable via AppleScript
- Fully customizable hotkeys
- Modifier Taps
- Powerful configuration and indexing options
- Automatic software update
- and much, much more…
- Ultra fast, adaptive abbreviation search (AASv4) for amazingly accurate results. Automatically adapts to your preferences.
- Find items by entering short acronyms of their name (e.g. SP to select System Preferences).
Sub-search and Browse
- Collections of other items (folders, bookmark folders, browser history, contacts, iTunes Library, photo albums, categories, etc.) can be browsed by pressing the right arrow key.
- Alternatively (with a few exceptions) the space bar can be used for browsing as well.
- Browse the recent documents of selected application. For example, type TED to select TextEdit, then press Right Arrow.
- Browse Finder’s Recent Folders. Select Finder, then press Right Arrow.
- Browse your contacts, contact groups and contact details such as email addresses, phone numbers, etc.
- Browse your web bookmark folder hierarchy sub-search a flat list of all bookmarks and folders.
- Browse or sub-search your web history grouped by day as a flat list.
- Browse your iTunes Library by playlist, genre, artist, album, composer or song.
- File System Browsing: Navigate to any file or folder on your hard disk.
- File System Browsing traverses folder aliases and symbolic links.
- Press ⌘→ to see a folder’s contents sorted by modification date.
- Sub-search while browsing with arrow keys, press Space to perform a deep sub-search.
- Category sub-search limits the search scope to a particular kind of items. For example, type JPI to select the JPEG Images category, then press Space to search to trigger a sub-search that searches for JPEG images only.
- Press Space to open an optional text field for entering search strings or parameters.
- Direct Input of URLs (either via ⌘L or automatically by entering a dot character).
- Search iTunes Store: Select iTunes, press Space.
- Search Mac App Store: Select App Store application, press Space.
- Pass parameters to AppleScripts, Unix Executables, services and actions. For example, select ping, press Space.
- File Content Search: Select plain text, rich text or html file, then press Space.
- Rename files, create new folders (⇧⌘R, ⇧⌘N).
- Perform web searches: For example, select Google and press Space.
- Comprehensive set of built-in web search templates (Google, Wikipedia, IMDB, YouTube, Flickr, Amazon, Wiktionary, Yahoo!, Merriam-Webster, and much much more).
- Add your own, freely editable search templates.
- Press ⇧Space to reuse your most recent search string with a different search engine.
- Open another search template with ⇧↩ to re-run the most recent search immediately.
- Press ↩ to open the selected item.
- Instant Open: Keep the last abbreviation character pressed to open the resulting item immediately, without pressing ↩.
- Press ⌘↩ to show the selected item in Finder.
- Press ⇧⌘↩ to show the selected item in the frontmost Finder window.
- Open files with alternative applications: Press Tab to trigger “Open with” and select the destination.
- Press ⌃↩ to open all files contained in a selected folder in one go.
- Run AppleScripts.
- Run Unix Executables.
- Run Automator Workflows.
- Invoke Mac OS X Services.
- Press Space to enter string parameters for scripts, services and actions.
- Drag items from LaunchBar or from the search result list.
- Press Tab to send the selected item to the desired target.
- Send to application to open items in that application.
- Send to folder for move/copy operations.
- Send file attachments to email contact.
- Send text to search templates to perform a web search.
- Press and hold ⌘Space to send file or text selections from other applications to to LaunchBar.
- A modifier tap can be used to invoke Instant Send ever more quickly.
- Once the data has been sent to LaunchBar, a target can be selected for further actions (open with application, move to folder, perform a web search, send email attachment, invoke service, etc.).
- Combine Instant Send with Instant Open for even faster results.
Drag & Drop
- Drag items from other applications to LaunchBar.
- Drag files, text or URLs from LaunchBar to other applications.
- The dragging target can be selected in LaunchBar even while the drag operation is already in progress.
- When dragging to a folder in LaunchBar, use the modifier keys to choose the desired file operation (move, copy, make alias, etc.)
- Press ⌘D to simulate dragging the current Finder selection to LaunchBar.
- Browse your iTunes Library by playlist, genre, artist, album, composer or song.
- Find similar songs: Select a song, press Right Arrow to find songs from the same album or the same artist, composer or genre.
- Playback control: Play, Pause, Next Song, Back Track, Fast Forward, Rewind
- Playback of individual songs but also entire playlists, albums, genres, artists and more.
- Best-Of Lists: LaunchBar automatically collects your top rated songs.
- Remote control your iTunes DJ playlist.
- Access the currently playing song: For example, type IT to select iTunes, then Right Arrow to show the currently playing song, then Right Arrow again to find similar tracks.
- Advanced iTunes Library management: The Identically Named Albums category helps to find albums with identically names but from different artists.
Web Bookmarks and History
- Access bookmarks and history from a wide range of web browsers (Safari, Firefox, Google Chrome, Chromium, Opera, OmniWeb and more).
- Open a bookmark with ↩ to open it in the default browser, or press Tab to choose a different browser.
- Use ⇧↩ to open a bookmark in the current Safari tab.
- Press Space to edit the selected bookmark prior to opening it.
- Use ⌘L to enter arbitrary URLs.
- Start typing a dot character switches to URL input automatically.
- Reveal other bookmarks from the same domain by pressing Right Arrow.
- Browse your web bookmarks: For example, type SB to select Safari Bookmarks, then press Right Arrow to browse your bookmark folder hierarchy, or press Space to get a flat list of all your bookmarks and bookmark folders.
- Browse your web history: For example, type SH to select Safari History, then press Right Arrow to browse your history grouped by days, or press Space to get a flat list of your most recently visited web pages.
- Open a bookmark folder with ↩ to open all contained bookmarks at once.
Configuration and Indexing
- Powerful, multithreaded indexing engine, performs index updates in background.
- Lots of indexing rules: Applications, Services, Actions, iTunes Library, iPhoto Library, Network Locations, Preference Panes, Dock, Contacts, Calendars, Web Bookmarks and History, Cyberduck Bookmarks and more.
- The Services indexing rule provides convenient access to commands from the Mac OS X Services menu.
- Indexes bookmarks and history from a variety of web browsers (Safari, Firefox, Google Chrome, Chromium, and more).
- Index your iPhoto events and albums.
- User Accounts indexing for Fast User Switching.
- Development Resources indexing rule, indexes the entire ADC Core Reference Library and the Developer Tools Reference Library.
- Lots of configuration options to keep the index at a reasonable size (see the Options pane in the configuration window).
- Live index updates. For instance, when you add a bookmark in Safari or when you import songs to your iTunes Library, these items are immediately accessible via LaunchBar.
- Disabling of individual index items.
- Multiple items can be enabled/disabled at once via context menu or by pressing Space.
- Categories: Quick access to items of the same kind (Applications, RTF Documents, Bookmarks, Email Addresses, etc.).
- Fully customizable hotkeys for LaunchBar search, Spotlight search, Calculator and Clipboard History.
- Modifier Taps: Tapping a modifier key can be used to activate LaunchBar and to invoke Instant Send.
- Seamless integration in LaunchBar’s standard interface.
- Unique features such as stack operation (last-in/first-out), ClipMerge™, etc.
- Paste as Plain Text option.
- Paste a sequence of clipboard objects using Paste and remove from history.
- Quick Look integration.
- Clipboard objects can be used for LaunchBar actions such as browsing, send-to, drag & drop, etc.
- Customizable Ignore List to protect sensitive data.
- Combine subsequent Copy operations into one single clipboard object just by pressing ⌘C twice.
- Collect portions of text from different sources and paste them all at once into a text document.
- Collect files and folders to copy or move them to a folder, or to send them as email attachments.
- Works with plain text, rich text and files.
- The Calendars indexing rule provides quick access to all your calendars.
- Create events and reminders via LaunchBar: Select a calendar and press Space.
- Events are entered in the format description @ date [and time]
- Optionally, enter a location: description @ location @ date [and time]
- Reminders are entered in the format description or description > due date.
- Various options for entering dates, times and durations.
- The tab key can be used to enter @ and > more conveniently.
- Press ⌘↩ to reveal newly created items in Calendar.
- See the LaunchBar Help for details about the input syntax.
- Option to create calendar events via third party utilities such as Fantastical or QuickCal.
- Actions indexing rule covering built-in an user defined actions.
- Comprehensive set of built-in Actions:
- File actions: Set/Reset Color Label, Empty Trash, Secure Empty Trash, Open Trash, Eject All Ejectable Volumes, Show Type and Creator
- Compress actions to create ZIP or tar.gz archives.
- Image manipulation actions: Resize, Recompress (High/Medium/Low Quality), Rotate Left/Right/180°, Flip Vertical/Horizontal
- Application control actions: Quit, Force Quit, Quit All Applications, Hide, Hide Others
- Utility actions: Make TinyURL, Start Screen Saver, Set Desktop Background, Show Date and Time, Show IP Address, etc.
- Text manipulation: Enter Text, Display in Large Type, New TextEdit Document, Save Text
- Clipboard actions: Copy as Plain Text, Copy and Paste, Copy and Paste as Plain Text, Clear Clipboard History, etc.
- System management actions: Sleep, Log Out, Shut Down, Restart
- Volume control: Decrease Volume, Increase Volume, Minimum Volume (10%), Medium Volume (50%), Maximum Volume (100%), Mute, Mute Off, Toggle Mute
- Text to Speech actions: Speak Text, Stop Speaking. Invoking the Speak Text action automatically selects the Stop Speaking action, so it’s easy to interrupt the speech output.
- iTunes control: Play, Pause, Next Song, Back Track, Update All Podcasts
- iTunes Fast Forward / Rewind actions (invoking the action again switches back to playback).
- Email actions: Get Mail, Get Mail in Background, New Mail Message
- Creating Screenshots: Copy Screenshot of Selected Area, Copy Screenshot of Selected Window, Copy Screenshot of Selected Window Without Shadow
- Search in Spotlight
- Look Up in Dictionary
- See the Actions indexing rule for the complete list of available actions.
- Add your own custom actions. Put your custom AppleScripts or shell scripts in ~/Library/Application Support/LaunchBar/Actions. This folder is automatically indexed by LaunchBar.
- The Reveal action (⌘↩) works with a wide range of items (Albums, Artists, contact groups, several indexing rules, etc.).
- Support for sending items to contact groups (e.g. to send a file to multiple recipients).
- Perform various file operations with a selected file or folder:
- Make Alias
- Make Symbolic Link (Absolute)
- Make Symbolic Link (Relative)
- Make Hard Link
- New Folder
- Get Info
- Move to Trash
- Eject Parent Volume
- Set/Reset Color Label
- Send to Folder functionality. Select a file, press Tab, select the destination. The desired file operation (Move, Copy, etc.) can be selected by pressing additional modifier keys. For example, ⌘↩ moves the file(s), ⌥↩ copies the file(s).
- Asynchronous file operations to avoid blocking when copying large files.
- Option to replace existing files when performing a copy/move operation.
- ⌘A can be used to create multiple file selections.
- When renaming a file, pressing Tab selects the filename extension.
- Quick access to all currently mounted volumes through the Mounted Volumes indexing rule.
- Eject All Ejectable Volumes action.
- Press Space (or ⌘Y) to preview the selected item with Quick Look.
- Press ⌥⌘Y to run Quick Look full screen.
- Also works with contact items (cards, groups), text items, Clipboard History items.
- Powerful, extensible calculator, based on Unix bc.
- Dedicated keyboard shortcut (can be configured in LaunchBar preferences > Calculator).
- Switch to Calculator automatically when typing a digit or pasting a numeric expression.
- Instant Calculate: If a text sent via Instant Send appears to be a valid calculator expression, the results are displayed automatically.
- Scientific calculations:
- Logarithms: ln (natural), ld (binary), log (base 10)
- Power: exp, pow
- Trigonometry: sin, cos, tan, asin, acos, atan
- Fractions: gcd (greatest common divisor), lcm (least common multiple), rem (remainder)
- Trigonometry modes (Radian, Degree, Grad)
- Function Shortcuts: Uppercase letters can be used to enter function names more quickly. For example, type S45 to get sin(45), or type Q2 to get sqrt(2).
- Smart Brackets to insert closing brackets and bracket pairs automatically.
- Smart Calculator Input for more efficient input especially on notebook keyboards.
- Automatic decimal separator detection (dot vs. comma).
- Extensible via custom macros. Put your bc macro files in ~/Library/Application Support/LaunchBar/Calculator
Command Line Operations
- Invoke command line operations in Terminal or iTerm.
- Open Terminal Here to open a new Terminal window for a given directory.
- Alternatively, press tab to send a folder to the Terminal application.
- Run Terminal Command Here to run a shell command in a given directory.
- Run Terminal Command With to run a shell command with a given file argument.
- Run Terminal Command to run arbitrary commands in a Terminal window.
- Run Shell Command to run arbitrary commands in a background shell.
- Option to hide LaunchBar’s Dock icon (see LaunchBar preferences > Advanced).
- “Turn Hiding Off” (⇧⌘H) to keep the LaunchBar window visible, to make it a better target for dragging operations.
- Customizable width and position of the input window.
- The input window can also be resized via keyboard by pressing ⌃⇧←/→.
- LaunchBar’s contextual menus can be opened with ⌃→ and ⌃⌥→
- Customizable number of items shown while searching and browsing.
- Customizable font size in the search result list.
- Switching Network Locations
- Fast User Switching
- Path Finder support
- Cyberduck Bookmarks
- Text Clips (files with a “.clip.txt” or “.clip.rtf” extension). The file contents are inserted in the frontmost application.
- Speech Synthesis: Spoken feedback of any searching or browsing activities.
- LaunchBar is scriptable via AppleScript.
- Automatic software updates.