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A nifty free tool for presenters: Zoomit (from SysInternals)

Note: This blog post is from 2007. Some content may be outdated--though not necessarily. Same with links and subsequent comments from myself or others. Corrections are welcome, in the comments. And I may revise the content as necessary.
What will those clever guys from SysInternals think of next? Known for their cool system mgt tools, here's something different, ZoomIt, which enables a couple of simple tools that most presenters will appreciate.

  • a zoom tool (zoom in on any area of your screen)
  • a draw tool (draw on your screen, whether zoomed or not)
  • a "meeting break timer" (to countdown till a break is up)

That last feature can be useful for user group managers or indeed any meeting organizer. All 3 features are toggled using configurable keystrokes (defaults to ctrl-1/2/3, respectively)).

(Update in 2009: The version now available (4.1), now also offers a new option, if you're on Vista or above. You can use Ctrl-4 instead and instead of with Ctrl-1 the zoom is "live", and you can manipulate the interface while zoomed. Nifty!)

Even those doing docs can benefit from the simple zoom and draw features (once set as you like, use the PrintScrn button to copy the screen to the clipboard). It may be easier doing that than using a tool to markup the screenshot after taking it.

Note as well that the zoom tool, once enabled, doesn't zoom unless you tell it to, using either a mouse scroll wheel or the up/down arrow buttons.

Read more about the tool at the MS site (MS acquired SysInternals last year):

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/sysinternals/Miscellaneous/ZoomIt.mspx

Indeed, if you're not familiar with the amazing suite of SysInternals tools for security, performance, networking, and more (all free), check them out at:

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/sysinternals/default.mspx

My favorite may be their replacement for the task manager, whose key feature to me is showing "deltas" for disk i/o, memory, and cpu per process. Sometimes, I want to know who's causing my disk to churn away.

For some "fun", check out the "Blue Screen of Death" simulator:

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/sysinternals/Miscellaneous/BlueScreen.mspx

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