Better binning

Keep your Recycle Bin neat, tidy, and safe with this file manager.

Satalink's Recycle Bin Manager improves on the native capabilities of the venerable Windows Recycle Bin, which does a decent job but has limitations that can make recovering files problematic and offers little in the way of options for emptying its contents. Recycle Bin Manager lets you set when and if it deletes certain kinds of files and from which drive, so some types get the quick heave-ho while others hang around a while, preventing the accidental deletion of critical file types.

Recycle Bin Manager's main interface, the file manager window, is efficient and sparse, just File, Edit, and Help menus, but good use of subtle color breaks up its tabular blandness and makes scanning its columns easier; for instance, disabled files show as gray lines instead of the alternating blue-and-white lines that distinguish active files. Columns and headings have configuration options, and icons at the head of each entry indicate the file's type at a glance, a thoughtful touch. Hovering over an item calls up a menu with choices to restore or delete files in several ways. Options dialogs let you configure how long to save certain file types, enable secure and auto delete functions, perform searches, and other settings and features.

Recycle Bin Manager is free to try for 30 days but costs only $9.95. It works in every version of Windows from 95 to 7. Next to it, the stock Windows Recycle Bin is more like a dumpster than a tool.

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