What's on Your Menu Bar?

Check out some of the daily tools that our Ninjas use

The menu bar (or the system tray for Windows/Linux users) is often filled with handy tools and gadgets that can make our daily desktop use very efficient. We asked a couple of our ninjas what kind of tools they had in their menu bar.

Alex Escalona

os x menu bar with many icons.

  1. Hangouts Chrome Extension: I’ve been using a Google Voice number for years now. Hangouts replaced Google Voice. This extension let’s me SMS and IM (and call) with all my contacts
  2. Google Photos Backup: Auto-backs up images to the Google cloud
  3. Google Drive: We use Google drive at work to share the weekly testing doc and our password database, among other docs
  4. CrashPlan: Auto-backs up (potentially) unlimited amount of data to my home server, which backs up to the CrashPlan cloud starting at $5/month
  5. Dropbox: The Google Drive alternative. I’ve used it for a long time now
  6. Mac OS VPN Status Icon: So I can easily connect to the NNI VPN when on an untrusted or public network (say, while working from coffee shops or someone else’s home network)
  7. Bluetooth Status: Self-explanatory
  8. Mac OS Lock Screen Icon (Keychain Access): This is handy esp. when I’m in public and need to step away from the computer. And yeah, I take my laptop with me to the bathroom when in a public setting. I’m paranoid like that
  9. Wi-Fi
  10. Volume
  11. Battery
  12. US Keyboard
  13. Time
  14. Username
  15. Spotlight
  16. Tunnelblick: The open-source VPN software as a backup to Mac OS VPN. I use it mainly to connect to my home VPN, which is a backup to the NNI VPN
  17. Notification

Mike Matz

os x menu bar with many icons.

  1. Paste: clipboard history manager
  2. 1Password: password manager
  3. BackBlaze: backups
  4. Dropbox
  5. Little Snitch: network monitor & firewall
  6. Airplay control
  7. Sharing control
  8. Time Machine backups
  9. Volume / audio devices
  10. Wi-Fi
  11. Battery
  12. Date & time
  13. User
  14. Spotlight
  15. Notifications

Robin de Bled

os x menu bar with many icons.

  1. SIP: color picker
  2. smcFanControl: controls your MacBook fan
  3. BarTender: organize menu bar items.
  4. CPU LED: keep an eye on your CPU load
  5. Time Machine: backup software
  6. Wi-Fi
  7. Battery
  8. VPN Connection
  9. LightShot fastest way to take a customizable screenshot
  10. Mom: Mac on Linux
  11. f.lux: adapt your display to the time of day
  12. BetterTouchTool: add more gestures to your trackpad and/or mouse
  13. Volume
  14. Bluetooth
  15. User change
  16. BarTender Settings

Ryan Shay

windows status bar with many icons.

  1. System Devices & Printers Icon
  2. Rescue Time: time tracking app
  3. OneDrive: store files online
  4. Chrome Background Task
  5. Realtek HD: Audio Manager
  6. Nvidia Experience Manager
  7. Logitech Game Controller Manager
  8. TeamViewer: remote control any computer (handy for support)
  9. Java Update Scheduler
  10. Samsung SSD Magician
  11. Skitch: screen shot app
  12. Asus Quick Charge
  13. Oculus Rift: virtual reality mask!
  14. iCloud: store files online
  15. Razer Synapse: controls or assign macros to any of your Razer peripherals
  16. Logitech Gaming Software
  17. Google Drive, store files online
  18. Outlook 2016

Matt Bochneak

os x menu bar with many icons.

  1. Chrome Notifications
  2. join.me: for online product demonstrations
  3. Dropbox: online file storage
  4. Google Drive: online file storage
  5. Plex: Media server
  6. Spectacle: move and resize windows
  7. Time Machine: backup all the things
  8. Bluetooth
  9. VPN
  10. Wi-Fi
  11. Battery: fully charged!
  12. Date & Time
  13. Spotlight
  14. Notifications


Reading Time

5 minutes


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