Winstep Software Technologies has updated its flagship products, Winstep Xtreme and Winstep Nexus, to version 17.10.
Winstep Xtreme, the company’s powerful set of desktop applications, gains a new Moon Phases module which shows you how the moon will appear on any day of the month.
As usual with Winstep, that’s just the start. You’re also able to view a realistic animation of the moon as it moves through its phases; check astronomical data including the time the moon raises and sets; or use the Zodiac view to find out which zodiac sign the moon is on in that particular day.
All this is surprisingly accurate, with the module even tilting the moon to take account of your viewing location on the Earth, and there are also many configuration options to help generate the best possible visuals.
Elsewhere, the Shelf (tabbed dock) sees a stylish visual enhancement with smooth icon scrolling. Move from one row of icons to the next and they’re no longer instantly replaced, instead smoothly scrolling into view.
The dock improvements continue with parent and child docks now independently configurable. You’re free to give any sub-dock its own theme, size, transparency and more, entirely separate from the parent dock.
Alarms have gained a little more flexibility, with the option to run weekly alarms every x weeks (“every other Thursday”).
There’s a handy new “toggle z-order option” (Always On Top or Normal Z-Order) on the right-click context menu of running applications.
Under-the-hood changes include almost silent updates – you’ll be alerted, see a download progress bar, but won’t have to work through the setup wizard – and the usual pile of big fixes should improve stability.
Winstep Nexus free, a gorgeous Windows dock, is the first product in Winstep’s range to get smooth colour transitions when matching desktop wallpaper (this YouTube video shows the technology in action). Not even the commercial Nexus Ultimate edition or Winstep XTreme have it yet.
There’s still plenty of paying Nexus Ultimate users to enjoy, including the gorgeously detailed Moon Phases module and the dock improvements delivered with Winstep Xtreme (see above, if you haven’t already).
Nexus Ultimate also now gets Winstep XTreme’s full pop-up calendar, which neatly integrates with the Nexus Clock and Alarm Manager.
As with XTreme, the update engine is far less intrusive. You’ll need to acknowledge an update notification and agree to a UAC prompt (probably), but there’s no more setup wizard to wade through, and installation should be largely automatic.
Winstep Xtreme and Winstep Nexus still run on anything from Windows 2000 up (who needs dependencies, anyway.)
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