5 Cool Plugins for Windows Live Writer

One of my favorite applications is Windows Live Writer. It’s a simple to use WYSIWYG blog editor that I’ve wrote about many times. I’ve been using it for probably over a year now and not too long ago it came out of beta. One of the things I truly enjoy with Windows Live Writer is that it’s extensible with a very easy to use plugin system and because of this I’m going to spotlight a few of my favorite Windows Live Writer Plugins.


The Insert Polaroid Plug-in

This plug-in is actually very clever as it makes use of a wordpress plugin (imagine that, I’m blogging about wordpress) called the thumbnail viewer and it’s self. The plugin creates a cool Polaroid style frame around your image, allows you to tilt the image and also display text below the image.

The application has a very thorough set of options available including the ability to define the size of the ‘large’ image displayed in the lightbox, the background color, the tilt, the font, pretty much you name it and you can control it. 

The picture above is that of myself with Rob Howard from Telligent so you can see just what it does.

You can learn more about this great plugin from the author’s website: http://www.brettonstuff.com/index.php/tech/polaroid-style-thumbnails

The Insert SnagIt Screen Capture

test1I absolutely love SnagIt. I’ve used it for years and don’t think I could ever get away with using anything else for my screen captures, it’s a lightweight application that runs in the background and can be called at any time.  Using the Insert SnagIt Screen Capture plugin you’re able to add screen captures to your blog posts from SnagIt.

The image here is of my Google Desktop sidebar. What makes SnagIt stand out is that after you capture the piece of your screen you’re able to go into SnagIt and adjust it adding text, highlights, you name it.

You can learn more about the Insert SnagIt plugin from the WLW Gallery: http://gallery.live.com/liveItemDetail.aspx?li=6ba7122b-56aa-4651-a7ab-613359a31986&bt=9&pl=8

The Insert Website Screen Capture

How often have you wanted to take a snapshot of a website and share it with your blog visitors? Okay, probably not very often but when you want to wouldn’t it be cool to have a tool to do so? Well there is.

Unfortunately, there’s little control over the image layout and settings but I think this is a work in progress and we’ll see more before long.

Insert Code

This one is available from: http://gallery.live.com/liveItemDetail.aspx?li=1f57bd9b-a692-4593-9e9e-e2962d9c0eee&bt=9&pl=8 and it’s pretty cool. It allows you to insert formatted source code into your blog entry making it easier to read for your visitors below is a snippet of code I found out on the Internet. It supports C#, VB, HTML, JavaScript, MSH and TSQL. It also allows you to include line numbers, a stylesheet and format alternating colors for the lines.

   1:  private void menuItem1_Click(object sender, System.EventArgs e)
   2:  {
   3:  MessageBox.Show("Hello World. This a tray icon application. Bye!");
   4:  }
   5:  private void menuItem2_Click(object sender, System.EventArgs e)
   6:  {
   7:  // exits the application
   8:  Application.Exit();
   9:  }

Insert Video

This is the top dog of WLW plugins. It allows you to insert a video from all the major video networks:


and you can embed it such that it starts playing immediately. It takes care of all the crazy tags and code, etc so you just click, copy the url and you’re done. 

You can learn more about this plugin at: http://gallery.live.com/liveItemDetail.aspx?li=65584500-3bd3-404b-818a-2cdec6304892&pl=8&bt=9

That’s a wrap

Those are some of my favorite Windows Live Writer plugins, there’s over 4 pages full of plugins at the Windows Live Writer Gallery but these are ones that I find especially useful and enjoy using. I’ve love to hear what your favorite plugin is and why. In the meantime be sure to visit the Windows Live Writer Gallery frequently to stay up to date on the available plugins.  If you’re interested in writing your own plugins check out the WLW Plugin SDK.

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