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Whether you’re on Windows 7 or Windows 8, Post-its on your desktop or Start Screen can be extremely helpful for remembering small but important amounts of information. Stop cluttering up your desk and go digital with these fantastic sticky note apps.

First up, for the desktop-inclined, we’ll cover those options before moving onto some modern Windows 8 options.

Desktop Sticky Notes

These solutions are perfect if you’re either running Windows 7 still, or if you’re on Windows 8 but prefer the desktop over the Start Screen.

An honorable mention should also go out to Stickies, which some would argue is the best sticky note app for Windows Stickies - The Best Way to Keep Sticky Notes On Your Windows PC Stickies - The Best Way to Keep Sticky Notes On Your Windows PC The other day, I realized something that both shocked and delighted me. In the entire span of MakeUseOf’s existence, its authors seem to have missed one application which I deem absolutely essential to my day-to-day... Read More , but it would not install on my Windows 8 machine, so I was unable to review it.

7 Sticky Notes

This full-featured solution, offers plenty of options for formatting your notes and the text within them.

After the installation, an icon will appear in your notification tray (the area in the bottom right corner of your desktop). Right clicking on this icon will give you the option to open a new note.

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Each note has a title and text body, as shown above. When you open a new note, the Note Configuration Window will appear beside it, shown below. This allows you to change the color of the note, the font, font size, font color, etc.

7-sticky-3

There’s also an option to set alarms. You can set certain notes to shake when you wake up your computer, to play a noise at a certain time, or to open a certain program at a given time. It seems like a good way to ensure that these notes get your attention.

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When you’re done configuring all the options for any given note, you can click the green arrow to save your changes or the red X to discard them.  If you ever need to reopen the Note Configuration Window, double click on the header of the note.

Notes can be dragged around by grabbing it by the dotted top left corner, and resized by grabbing the triangle in the lower right. The note below is an example of a semi-transparent red note with white text. Eye-grabbing enough that you won’t forget it, but not quite so obnoxious as to ruin your desktop.

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Right-clicking on any note gives you the abundance of options shown below. If you’re juggling a bunch of notes on your desktop, these can be extremely helpful because you can arrange them alphabetically, roll them up (so only the header shows), or choose which notes display in front and back.

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If you right click on the icon in your notification tray, one of the options is Notes Manager. This view will give you an organizable overview of all your notes, which could be super helpful if your desktop is flooded with them.

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All in all, 7 Sticky Notes gets the job done and then some, allowing for so much customization. For an even more in-depth look, check out our full review of 7 Sticky Notes 7 Sticky Notes - The Most Full-Featured Sticky Notes Program [Windows] 7 Sticky Notes - The Most Full-Featured Sticky Notes Program [Windows] It won't be until you actually give digital sticky notes a try that you'll understand how useful and effective they are. I won't argue that physical sticky notes pressed around your desk or monitor is... Read More . It is definitely a solid choice for desktop-based notes, but let’s take a look at what the other competition has to offer.

Hott Notes

This is probably the best all-around sticky note app for the desktop. It’s simpler to set up than 7 Sticky Notes, offering funny commentary as you do so (see below).

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It also has these global hot keys that allow you to start a note from anywhere, and it allows you to customize what double clicking the icon in the notification tray will do. That’s a small tweak, but super helpful.

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Once it’s all set up, the layout is similar to 7 Sticky Notes, with a small editing box that appears next to each note when you want to customize it. Similarly, you can edit the font, the color of the note, and set an alarm. Not as full-featured as 7 Sticky Notes, but presented in a less cluttered way.

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My only complaint was with the list form of notes, which requires the user to click “Create New Item” for every list item, rather than hitting enter or tab after. If you plan on using the list function, this could get annoying.

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The button in the notification tray allows you to access everything you would need, and it isn’t as overwhelming as 7 Sticky Notes.

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In the end, it might not have all of the advanced features of 7 Sticky Notes, but it is a bit nicer looking and easier to use. For a solid balance of features and style, Hott Notes is the way to go.

We also have a full review of Hott Notes Bring Sticky Notes To Your Deskop With Hott Notes [Windows] Bring Sticky Notes To Your Deskop With Hott Notes [Windows] Through the use of sticky notes, I feel like I've been able to just about double my daily productivity. Being able to have physical reminders that nagged for certain tasks to be completed was a... Read More , if you’re looking for even more on this handy app.

Evernote Sticky Notes

If you use Evernote for your note-taking 5 Cool Features That Prove Evernote Is Still A Kick-Ass Service 5 Cool Features That Prove Evernote Is Still A Kick-Ass Service With all the hoopla surrounding Google Drive, and everyone going nuts over Dropbox, I think one other service is being sorely neglected - Evernote. Our Evernote coverage has been rather sketchy of late, and I... Read More , then this might be the sticky note app for you. It also has options for syncing with Google Drive and Dropbox, but both of those options are still in Beta.

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The activation method of setting up Evernote is quick and simple by following the instructions, but you can use it without an Evernote account if you don’t have one — it just won’t back up or sync your notes then. Once that’s set up, you can configure the settings by right-clicking on the icon in your notification tray.

One of my annoyances with this app, however, is that for it to be running, there has to be an active icon in the taskbar (the bar running along the bottom of your desktop). 7 Sticky Notes was able to run in the background with only an icon in the notification tray, but if you close Evernote Sticky Note’s taskbar icon, the whole thing closes and your notes disappear.

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The notes themselves don’t have a lot of room for customization. They’ll expand to fit more text, and you can adjust the font and itssize in the settings, but you’re stuck with that color scheme and there’s no option for transparency. Don’t expect a lot of a features here aside from the Evernote-syncing.

Still, it’s a viable contender if you’re looking for a simple solution that syncs with Evernote. It doesn’t have all the frills of the other options, but for many people that could be a plus.

Modern Sticky Notes

Do you want reminders on your Start Screen instead of the desktop? These apps all have a modern interface, can be downloaded right from the Windows Store, and can pin notes directly to the Start Screen. They’re not quite like the floating sticky notes apps for Android Who Knew An Android Phone Has Screen Space For Floating Sticky Notes? Who Knew An Android Phone Has Screen Space For Floating Sticky Notes? You may often come across a small detail you’d like to remember when you’re out of the house. If you have an Android device, you can always save it into Evernote or OneNote for Android;... Read More , but they get the job done.

Sticky Notes 8

One of the most popular options, Sticky Notes 8 should be your first stop. You can choose between a few colors of notes, but there’s nowhere near the customizability as some of the desktop apps for font size, color, etc. For some reason, all the modern apps lag behind the desktop apps in terms of features.

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Ads are displayed within this free app (that is what the grey note above is), but they can be removed for $1.50. Since ads can be moved out of the way and you can even place other notes over top of them, they’re not such a big deal.

The Live Tiles that display a given note come in three sizes: small, medium, and wide. The wide view is shown below, while the medium is about half that and really can’t show much text. The small view is even worse, not displaying any text at all. You’ll definitely want to go for the wide, and even then, keep your notes brief.

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The biggest standout feature here is built-in syncing with OneDrive (which is a fantastic app for backing up everything on Windows 8 5 Smart Ways to Customize & Improve OneDrive in Windows 8.1 5 Smart Ways to Customize & Improve OneDrive in Windows 8.1 OneDrive can be a blessing or a curse. It's deeply integrated into Windows 8.1. You'll either want to get the most of it or disable it completely. We can help with both. Read More ). If you want to be sure that your notes are backed up, this is the solution for you.

Sticky Tiles

Don’t let the incredibly similar name fool you, Sticky Tiles (with an “s”) is a much better app than Sticky Tile (without an “s”), a bare bones app that will only leave you frustrated. Sticky Tiles doesn’t have any interface for viewing all your notes, and is instead focused entirely on the Live Tile.

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When you open the app, you’re immediately prompted to give a title and information for the Live Tile, choose the color, choose the style, and then pin it. It has the same three sizes as the others — small, medium, and wide — and you’ll run into the same problem of limited space for text here.

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Tapping on the Live Tile will open the note up for editing, without allowing you to create additional notes or view multiple at a time.

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It’s not great for those who want to juggle dozens of notes, but for keeping a single pertinent note on your Start Screen, it’s probably your best bet.

Anything We Missed?

The desktop applications are clearly more evolved here, and I would recommend Hott Notes to anyone who wants an easy to use, yet customizable sticky note app. If you’re determined to put notes on the Start Screen, Sticky Notes 8 offers the best way to handle multiple notes there.

Linux users, be sure to check out these 5 sticky note options 5 Little Useful Sticky Notes For Linux 5 Little Useful Sticky Notes For Linux Read More for you.

Is there a sticky notes application we missed that you think deserves a mention? Let us know in the comments!

  1. Ty Buchanan
    September 23, 2016 at 9:34 am

    Boo!

  2. Ty Buchanan
    September 23, 2016 at 9:33 am

    All of these sticky note "apps" have the same issue: they do not give you the obvious - working links in notes! And I do mean note's'. When you find an app that provides working links you can open one note. What a stupid idea. Sticky notes are based on sticky notes at home. When did you see one note on a fridge?

  3. Paul F Tolson
    September 5, 2016 at 2:54 pm

    How do I get notes produced by the new "Sticky Notes" app in Windows 10 to stick to the screen like paper notes so they stay there when swapping windows?

  4. mno
    August 19, 2016 at 7:07 am

    is there any sticky notes that i can sync it between my pc desktop , android and my other pc?

  5. Cindy
    August 8, 2016 at 12:30 pm

    I cannot remove stickienotes from my computer. I would like to do that. What company are they under so I can go to my Library and delete it.

  6. MV
    July 26, 2016 at 3:45 pm

    Do any of these do anything other than typed text? I would like to see a Sticky Note application that can display images or hand-written notes from a stylus.

    • Doc Szpinner
      July 27, 2016 at 8:53 pm

      Kudos to NOTEZILLA (Conceptworld) post it notes. The best without reservation but you will pay a lot for it if you want it on your PC. The free versions for Android and Apple are very good, as good if not better than any mentioned above. But the PC version is more than bang for the buck: insert screenshots, images, icons, write text, manage to your own memo-boards, colours galore, font variation as you wish, make notes unobtrusive, you bet, pin to internet sites, of course, reminders alerts, marvellous. The NOTEZILLA app should be renamed to NOTESKILLA as it will 'kill' any other note making application bar none. I challenge a user to find its Achilles heel...it does have ONE. But one folks when it blasts away all the competition with what it does as is. Simply put...fabulous, but like a Ferrari or a Porsche, expensive...but you definitely get what you paid for.

  7. Gautam Jain
    June 21, 2016 at 9:20 am

    Thanks @Steven for mentioning Notezilla sticky notes app.

    Just an update that we recently made our Android and iPhone apps completely free. You can try syncing the Windows version of Notezilla with the Android/iPhone apps without paying anything - http://www.conceptworld.com/Notezilla

  8. mozell dockery
    May 29, 2016 at 9:49 am

    Good discussion . I was fascinated by the points - Does anyone know where my assistant could possibly get ahold of a fillable TREC 9-6 document to fill out ?

  9. Max van Straaten
    May 22, 2016 at 1:33 pm

    Does one of them also push the screen through a gamescreen? I would like to set somekind of alert when I'm gaming, I used to have one that just switched from my gamescreen to the windows screen (sometimes crashing the game) but I would just want it to show in the game screen en disappear with a hot key or after a few seconds.

    If anyone knows an alert like that please let me know
    Thanks!

  10. john black
    December 24, 2015 at 5:09 pm

    my favorite apps Simple Sticky Notes

  11. Andreyu
    December 18, 2015 at 7:50 am

    Which one app has the glass theme? I'm looking for notes that have transparent background

  12. Sandy
    March 30, 2015 at 3:16 am

    Thanks for your sharing article,it will be great if it includes Efficient Sticky Notes (www.efficientstickynotes.com), I have tested many software, above software include, but choose Efficient Sticky Notes at last because of easy to use and lower cost.

  13. Tom Revell
    March 9, 2015 at 9:57 pm

    If your problem with installing Stickies involved seeing a "side-by-side" error, you might like to know that I know all about it, and have written up the reason behind it on my web site.

    More recently, I added extra checks to the installer, so that it will spot that there's going to be a problem, and help you out pointing towards the DLLS which are missing from W8 64-bit.

    Tom Revell, Stickies author

    • Daphne
      April 9, 2015 at 10:33 pm

      Thanks for responding here! I don't know about the author, but as a user this makes a big difference for me.

  14. Steven Avery
    February 10, 2015 at 2:23 pm

    Thanks for the roundup!

    The Memoboard feature of Notezilla is very helpful, allowing a sticky program to be an all-purpose note keeper in the manner of Rightnote or Keynote, without the bane of white space.

    Please let us know if any of the other note programs have a similar feature to the memoboard. Thanks!

  15. Xiola
    December 19, 2014 at 4:20 am

    I was able to install Stickies on my 8.1 laptop, after I installed the 2008 Microsoft Visual C++ Redistributable Packages.

  16. Drake
    October 28, 2014 at 6:18 am

    Have been using GloboNote ever since. Very stable, easy to search for notes and can run on many platforms.

    Try it:
    globonote.info

  17. DarkAngel
    September 22, 2014 at 3:54 pm

    PNotes is not in the list but I like it most. Free, portable and customizable.

    pnotes.sourceforge.net/

  18. Axel C
    September 22, 2014 at 9:10 am

    I've been using Notezilla for years and UI'm very happy with it.

    The features that I use the most are:
    - Stay on top
    - Stick to desktop (means the note sstay on your desktop. you can also have notes in folders, not showing in the desktop, but available trough a notes browser)
    - Stick to window. this allows a note to only be sown when a certain window is active (link is done with the window title)
    - Reminders on the notes : http://www.conceptworld.com/Notezilla/Sticky-Note-Reminder-Window

    • Justin Dennis
      October 15, 2014 at 7:05 pm

      thanks for the suggestion!

  19. A.S.R.
    September 21, 2014 at 9:23 am

    How can you possibly miss Stickies? It is still be best one. Check it out:
    zhornsoftware.co.uk/stickies/

    • Mary Brady
      September 22, 2014 at 3:31 am

      Thanks for recommending Stickies. Has enough features for me. Easier to use than 7 Sticky Notes.

    • Ricky Cobb
      October 15, 2016 at 11:09 pm

      Excellent! Thanks it has the features I'm looking for and runs lightweight! Hot-keys, and all the other usual features nice!

  20. Stevie Wright
    September 21, 2014 at 8:39 am

    I've been using StickyPad for some time now. Works well for me.

    greeneclipse.com/stickypad.html

  21. Swanny
    September 21, 2014 at 12:18 am

    What about the built-in sticky notes application with Windows 7 and Windows 8? Does the job really good IMO. Simple and basic, just like actual sticky notes ;)

  22. Mike
    September 20, 2014 at 10:18 pm

    NoteZilla ftw!

  23. Amrit K
    September 20, 2014 at 7:42 pm

    I wish if there was audio sticky notes!!!
    Well... we can make one ;)

    • Tina
      October 13, 2014 at 10:47 am

      How would you make an audio sticky note?

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