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safaristand review In the past, I’ve looked at a few Safari plugins: Cooliris Take A Closer Look At Your Pictures With Cooliris Take A Closer Look At Your Pictures With Cooliris Read More , which revolutionizes the way we view images and videos (and even shop online); and I’ve delved into two of the most popular search plugins – Glims and Inquisitor Safari Search Plugins Showdown: Glims vs Inquisitor [Mac Only] Safari Search Plugins Showdown: Glims vs Inquisitor [Mac Only] Read More to see which one is better overall.

This time around, I’ll be looking into one of the best Safari plugins out there which has eluded me for a long time. Despite the fact that it was vastly popular, I hesitated to install it because firstly, I don’t like having too many plugins – they could conflict with each other. Secondly, SafariStand’s site is pretty uninviting and doesn’t give the impression that its plugin is actually quite awesome. So, enter my SafariStand review.

SafariStand offers so many enhancements, I don’t know where to begin. To be quite honest, I don’t think that I haven’t tried all of them yet! But there are some features which I think are pretty mind-blowing. Let’s start with those:

History Flow

How many times have you gone through your browsing history, trying to find something and you can’t remember the title of the article or what the site was called? For me, this happens quite often. I have to literally shoot in the dark and re-open all the websites which I’ve browsed before that sounds vaguely close to what I’m looking for. Most of the time, my search ends in vain.

SafariStand solves this problem with something pretty neat. It’s called History Flow and from the name, you probably expect it to be something like Cover Flow and it is literally Cover Flow for your history. SafariStand captures a thumbnail for every site you’ve been to and stores it together with your browsing history to allow you to graphically view the sites you’ve visited.

History Flow can be found within Safari’s History menu. Clicking on it will bring up SafariStand’s History Flow window like in the screenshot :

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safari history flow

Like I said, just awesome.

Sidebar

SafariStand brings another innovative addition to Safari: a sidebar with thumbnails of all opened tabs. This is actually pretty useful because if I have too many opened tabs, Safari would collect the tabs together under a double-right arrow (>>). With Sidebar, I can roughly know which sites I have opened in those tabs. I can re-arrange and close tabs in Sidebar and also adjust the size of the thumbnail.

For the sake of exhibition, I enlarged the size of the sidebar but normally it opens much smaller (and less obtrusive) than this.

safari sidebar

Workspaces

I do a lot of research online The Best Reference Sites For Medical Students The Best Reference Sites For Medical Students Read More and most of the time, I tend to have quite a few tabs open. However, I can’t always finish reading them at once. SafariStand lets me store all the opened tabs as a Workspace and it can be re-opened with a single click. You might call it Safari session saver. I can also save multiple Workspaces and they can all be managed in SafariStand’s Bookmark Shelf.

safari session saver

Automatic searches

By enabling SafariStand’s automatic searches, there’s no need to press Cmd+F before inputting a search query. It will immediately recognize keystrokes and use them to find whatever it is I’m looking for on that page, provided that nothing (address bar, search field) is focused.

Besides the few really cool features I’ve just mentioned, SafariStand still has an arsenal of capabilities left to explore:

  • Automatically close the Download window after a certain period of time
  • Switch tabs with the mouse wheel
  • Quick search in address bar
  • Stand Bar: separate bar for Bookmarks & History
  • and many more

SafariStand is a SIMBL plugin and has to be added into /Users/(your username)/Library/Application Support/SIMBL/Plugins/. There are also separate versions for Leopard and Tiger so be careful about which you download.

SafariStand was tested with Safari 3.2.1 running on Mac OS X 10.5.5. Because I can’t test this on Tiger and the fact that Cover Flow view was only implemented in Leopard’s Finder, I’m assuming that History Flow might not be available on the Tiger version of SafariStand.

Which SafariStand feature do you like best? Are there any other Safari plugins you’d like to recommend to our MakeUseOf users? Share your wisdom in the comments!

  1. tom
    February 27, 2009 at 5:28 pm

    the newest safari browser version 4, beta 2? did not have the feature where you could browse webpages like Itunes browser, so I removed it from my system completely. if it had this feature, it would have been neat! but the twerps at Apple want to feed the public a bunch of bullshit about a new and innovative way of browsing the web. the newest version of Safari browser did NOT have this feature that the makers claimed it had! WHAT A BUNCH OF LIARS!

  2. aesop
    January 24, 2009 at 1:15 pm

    I wasn't able to make Safaristand work. I used the 'L' version, since I'm using OSX 10.5.6 and Safari 3.2.1.

    I installed SIMBL from http://culater.net/software/SIMBL/SIMBL.php and put the safaristand.bundle into the required plugins folder.

    The first time I booted Safari it asked for my keychain. I was a little suspicious of this but thought, what the hey, and continued. (In any case I think I had updated my keychain password to something new since the last time I started up Safari). But not since installing either SIMBL or Safaristand.

    Safaristand didn't work, so I looked again and enabled admin privileges for the input managers folder using "sudo chown -R root:admin /Library/InputManagers".

    Still not getting anything. Anyone got any clueshat's happened?

    • Jackson
      January 26, 2009 at 2:33 pm

      When I first started using SafariStand, I also thought that it didn't work. But it turns out that SafariStand only adds a menubar item called "Stand". If that didn't appear in your case, it could either be because there is a conflict between other plugins. Your best bet to make it work is by contacting the developer, email hetima at hetima dot com

      • aesop
        January 28, 2009 at 6:04 am

        no 'stand' menu item. I don't think I'll bother writing though.I'm happy with firefox- and their plugins generally don't involve all this futzing around. I agree it's faster sometimes though, especially starting the app, which, with firefox makes one think one's starting some behemoth like Photoshop or something, rather than a browser.

        • Jackson
          January 28, 2009 at 1:27 pm

          Sorry to hear that. I agree about Firefox's startup time though

  3. sandra johnson
    January 17, 2009 at 7:11 am

    I tried to install the SafariStand plug in for Tiger on my Mac but got an error message that there was no application for it to open in. I'm sure I did something wrong, just don't know what it was.

  4. Mulder
    January 11, 2009 at 3:28 pm

    The History Flow sounds like a nice feature, but I don't see it listed anywhere within the SafarStand plugin, or even on their web site. Maybe it's a feature that only works in 10.5? If so, you need to mention that, or clearly tell people where it should be located to activate or deactivate it.

    • Jackson Chung
      January 11, 2009 at 5:11 pm

      I honestly don't know if it is Leopard only because the website was loosely translated into English from Japanese and there isn't any documentation in English yet. But from what I see in the version history: History Flow was only implemented in the Leopard version in March. I assume that it's because Tiger does not have Cover Flow view built-in.

      In the article, I stated where History Flow can be found. And yes, History Flow is mentioned on their website.

      • Mulder
        January 26, 2009 at 2:40 pm

        If Cover Flow works just fine in iTunes in Tiger, then the ability to implement History Flow in SafariStand for Tiger also exists. It would only make sense to implement History Flow in the Leopard version and not in Tiger if the developer were using a Leopard-only technology for History Flow. So far, Hetima has not replied to that question.

  5. Time Saving Software
    December 29, 2008 at 9:47 am

    Fabulous post... I'll be installing this Safari add on right away so that I can share the productivity boost with others!

  6. DontTazeMeBro
    December 23, 2008 at 2:54 pm

    This is a great plug-in for Safari, and has come a long way from where it started.

  7. dave
    December 23, 2008 at 11:36 am

    it's a nice little add-on, but for serious research i use yojimbo which lets me archive links or full pages (as pdf etc) and so on- also, my *main* concern is the use of the input manager approach for this plugin which is no longer embraced by apple...this historically causes assorted issues and users would be well advised to read up on input manager problems

    one workaround was presented this year with plugsuit:

    infinite-labs.net/plugsuit/

    ...but be aware that even though this nice prefpane approach to managing installs sounds wonderful, users still experience issues...

    i'd be curious to know how many of you are using safaristand with plugsuit instead of simbl - it supposedly cures the 'problems with OS upgrades' issue that plagues safaristand...

    • Jackson Chung
      December 23, 2008 at 3:59 pm

      Coincidently, Plugsuit was developed infinitelabs, who also developed Afloat - I reviewed it a few articles back.

  8. Mahmoud
    December 21, 2008 at 6:28 pm

    Thanks for your contribution .

    but please add ( for Mac only ) to the name of the article as i thought that these plugins are available for windows also until i read in the tags the word Mac.

    Thanks anyway .

    • Jackson Chung
      December 21, 2008 at 6:46 pm

      Sorry about that. Usually, I remember to add that into the title but I don't know what happened this time!

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