Clever window hider

Keep prying eyes away from your computer activities, despite a clunky interface.

Hide is an ingenious program that allows users to hide various windows with the press of a button. Unfortunately, the program's unintuitive interface makes some of its features difficult to use, which is a major drawback.

The program's interface is basic, with a box labeled Currently Hidden Windows and another labeled Program Group. It's not immediately clear what a user should do from here, and there's no Help file, but a bit of clicking around reveals that the meat of the program's functions is contained in the Settings. Here, users can set hot keys for a variety of functions, including hiding active windows, showing all windows, and changing the active window's title (a sneaky and useful feature). Unfortunately, the functions involving the Program Group aren't entirely clear. There are multiple references to Program Groups, but we're not sure if this means that Hide hides all instances of a particular program--all Word documents, for example--or if you can specify that you want to hide, for instance, Firefox and Solitaire. This part of the program is where a Help file would really come in handy. We fiddled and fiddled with the Program Group options and just couldn't get anything to happen. The other options that allowed us to hide windows one at a time were still useful, but we were disappointed that we couldn't take advantage of all the program's features.

Hide is free. It comes as a ZIP file and is accessible after extraction with no need to install. Despite a few difficult features, we recommend this program to all users.

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