When you need to be sure that a specific text or paragraph is clean and free of spelling mistakes, you need a program like FreeSpell. This is a spell-checking tool that allows you to review the orthography of any text present in any open window or application as long as you can copy it to the clipboard.
FreeSpell works through a "hotkey", a key combination that activates the spell-checker and that is fully customizable through the program's simple and well-designed interface. This consists of a small window to configure this key combination, which may include modifying keys like Control, Alt, Shift and WinKey. By default, the spell-checker launches when you press WinKey+z. From the main window you can also access the advanced configuration options, which consist of a text configuration file where you can manually change some of the most unusual parameters, like the temporary file location and name, or to specify if that is the first time the program is running.
When you select some text that you would normally be able to copy to the clipboard from any Windows application and press the hotkey you previously defined, the spell-checker will execute. This text-mode application will show you several suggestions for every mistake it finds in the selected portion of text - you can either accept it or ignore it. You can also cancel the process at any moment. By default, the program comes with just an English dictionary; nevertheless, you can download additional dictionaries from the website provided and add to the program easily. Remember, however, to tell the program to use a different dictionary through the advanced options.
Once finished, the result will be a correct version of your text stored in your clipboard. Thus, when you use FreeSpell, you need to be very careful, because the spell-checker moves any text selected to the clipboard, deleting any previously existing contents.
The developer actually offers two versions of the program, this free version and a Pro (paid) version. This free version is fully functional, and the only difference between them is that the Pro version allows you to minimize the program's main window to the system tray area. In the free version, you have to keep that window open to be able to activate the spell-checker - you can minimize it, but it will go to the Windows' taskbar area, as usual.
- Easy to use.
- Allows you to check texts from any active window.
- Allows you to add dictionaries for different languages
- The free program only minimizes to the Task Bar area, and not the System Tray area