Everyday we see new apps coming out for Windows 8, and with each passing day, the quality of apps seems to be getting better. Now, when the final version of Windows 8 is available for the general public, it seems the pace has further increased. While browsing through the new releases in the Windows Store, I stumbled upon an interesting app called Toolbox for Windows 8. It is designed to increase productivity on both desktops and tablets, by allowing you to use multiple tools side by side. You can choose from a total of nine tools and run six of them at a time on your computer screen in a grid-style arrangement of your choice. The Windows 8 and RT app comes packed with a bunch of arrangement presets, but you can customize an arrangement according to requirements by resizing each tool to take less or more space on the screen. More on Toolbox for Windows 8 after the jump.
In order to get Toolbox for Windows 8, go to Windows Store, type “toolbox” and press Enter. From the left side, choose the tile titled Toolbox for Windows 8 to access its Windows Store page.
Once there, click the Install button on the left side to download and install the app to your Windows 8 machine.
The main interface of the application lists the nine available tools, namely Web (browser), Calculator, Converter, Facebook, Voice Notes, Notifier, Clock, Weather and Doodle. Clicking any tool will open it in full screen.
You can right-click anywhere inside the app to choose a layout from the bar that appears at the top. There are a total of nine available layouts that be selected to instantly create slots on the screen for required tools.
The bar at the bottom displays Toolsets, which allow you to quickly switch between different pre-defined tool combinations and arrangements. You can, of course, tweak each of these presets after switching to them.
Using the different available layouts, you can perform several tasks at the same time. For instance, in the screenshot below, I have the Weather, Calculator and Web tools opened at the same time. You can also use each portion of an arrangement to run multiple instances of a single tool.
To create custom toolsets, or pin Saved Toolsets to the Windows 8 Start Screen, press Win + I to open the Settings Charms on the right side, and select the Manage Toolsets option.
Toolbox for Windows 8 feels very well-crafted and can prove to be an excellent companion for a multi-monitor setup, where it can be used to convert one display into a general-purpose dashboard of sorts, or you could place your Surface RT on your desk with its kickstand out and Toolbox running on it to keep handy tools and info at hand as you work.
The app works on both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows 8.