Cinch – Aero Snap on the Mac

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My father is a Microsoft certified software dude, so he’s had Windows 7 for the past few months, and has installed it on a few machines to test it out. I was at my parent’s house a month or so back and had to use my mom’s Dell, and I found this cluttered screen with windows open everywhere. I started to move some to the side, when I noticed this line in the middle of the screen. I release the mouse and the window locks into half the page. I try it again, and that happens with the other window on the opposite side, splitting the screen between two documents. Man, did that piss me off.

As a writer, I’m often going between two windows at a time, sometimes to edit, other times for research. It’s the whole reason I got an additional monitor for my setup, and now splitting the screen is a standard feature in Windows 7. If only they made something like that for the Mac. Turns out, they do.

It’s named Cinch, and it’s produced by Irradiated Software. When I first heard about it, I contacted the company and they sent me a free version to review. It works just like the Aero Snap feature in Windows 7, but with a slightly Mac touch. Grab a window and slide it over to the sides of the screen, and a dotted line will appear around half of the screen. Release the mouse and like magic, the window resizes to half the screen size. Move it to the top of the screen, and the window stretches to fill the entire screen. Move the window away from a side or the top after being sized and it goes back to its original shape, like nothing ever happened.

So now the real question: Does it work? Yup, it sure does, and it works well. Better yet, it will even function with two monitors, assuming that the two monitor positions are slightly skewed. Meaning that my dual monitor setup now can Cinch four separate windows on my two screens. There were occasions when I moved the mouse over and it didn’t pull up a dotted line, but those instances were few and far between in the few days I tested it out.

This is one of those apps that adds an extra level of functionality to your Mac that you didn’t know you needed until you had it. Plus, the price is great, too. A free nagware version, or just $7 online. Not too bad.

Comments

  1. Something I’ve been doing all the time manually can now be done automatically (and I really like the returning-to-normal feature). Thanks for the tip! I paid for the app after a mere few seconds of use.

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