Parallels Toolbox features


Support team guest blog author: Ajith Mamolin


If you already use Parallels Toolbox, or are planning to give it a shot soon, you might be interested to learn more about the awesome Parallels Toolbox features we introduced in a past blog.

The Parallels Development Team is constantly expanding the Toolbox functionality, and it now includes around 20 features that will help you perform everyday tasks on your Mac. Let me walk you through some of the new and most popular features you will love.

Parallels Toolbox Features

One of the challenges many Mac users face is space management. Parallels Toolbox Archive feature gives you the ability to create compressed archives for your files so you can save space or easily share multiple files. The Archive feature includes the following capabilities you won’t find in a built-in system utility:

1-Archive

If you compress files into a package, then obviously you will need a way to unpack the archives. Parallels Toolbox also has an Unarchive feature. This feature supports various formats (not all of them are supported by the built-in system utility). For example, this tool can unpack archives formatted as 7z, RAR, RPM, XAR, and Z.

Parallels Toolbox features

Sometimes, certain actions you perform on the Mac have to be recorded for various purposes. The Record Screen feature comes in handy here. This feature can be used to record videos of a selected area, a window, or the entire screen. While recording a video, this tool can also record audio from the computer’s microphone. To stop recording, click the Record Area icon in the menu. The video file will appear on your Desktop.

Parallels Toolbox features

When you need to take screenshots of a selected area, a window, or the entire screen, you can utilize the Take Screenshots feature. The image file appears on your Desktop.

Parallels Toolbox features

We now also have an Alarm feature in Parallels Toolbox. Use this tool to set an alarm at a specific time and date with required notifications. You can also set the alarm sound and add names for your alarms. The Snooze feature is available as well.

At times, we have important upcoming events and we might need a reminder. Use the Date Countdown tool to set up a countdown to a specific date, such as a birthday, a deadline, or a vacation. Just set the day and month, and Date Countdown starts counting down the days for you, showing the number of remaining days in the tool’s icon in the Dock and Finder. When the time comes, Date Countdown displays a message. You can stop the countdown by flipping the On/Off switch in the app’s main window.

If you need a stopwatch, use the Stopwatch feature. Use this tool to measure elapsed time, as you would do with any stopwatch. You might use it, for example, to measure how long it takes to perform a certain action on your computer. The stopwatch can be started and stopped quickly simply by clicking the icon in the Toolbox or in the Dock. You can pause the stopwatch and then continue or reset the time. Even if you restart your computer, the stopwatch continues measuring time.

Besides Stopwatch, we also have the Timer to count down from a time you set to zero. To begin the countdown, set the time and click Start. Even if you close the window, it continues counting down and notifies you when the timer reaches zero. You can even set a sound to play to help make sure you don’t miss the notification.

Parallels Toolbox features

Additionally, you can use the Convert Video tool to convert videos so they can be played in the video app on an iPhone or iPad. Simply drag a videofor example, your favorite movie or TV showto the tool’s icon or window, and it will be converted. The tool can convert almost any video format and can add converted video to your iTunes Library.

Parallels Toolbox features

When you want to avoid distractions so you can focus on a task, you can use the Do Not Disturb feature. When activated, this feature disables notifications, as well as the Dock app animations. To deactivate this mode, click the tool icon again. All previous settings will be restored. Do Not Disturb turns off automatically at 12:00 AM.

Parallels Toolbox features

If you’re in the middle of some important work, you may not want your Mac to go to sleep. The Do Not Sleep feature can be quite convenient here. When activated, this tool prevents your computer from going to sleep and your display from dimming. All settings that would allow the computer to go to sleep are instantly disabled. To deactivate this mode and restore all sleep settings, simply launch the tool again and turn the option off.

Parallels Toolbox features

Parallels Toolbox also makes downloading videos from the Internet simpler with the Download Video tool. Simply drag the URL of a website featuring a video from your browser to the tool’s icon or window, and the video will begin downloading. Many popular video sharing sites are supported. You can also copy the URL (select it and press Command+C), switch to the Download Video tool, and paste it (Command+V). Video files are saved to the Downloads folder on your Mac.

Parallels Toolbox features

For security purposes, you can use the Lock Screen tool to immediately lock your screen and prevent unauthorized access to your computer. No need to wait until the password-protected screen saver kicks in, or to remember which active corner activates it (of configured). Simply click the Lock Screen tool to unlock the computer, and enter your user account password to get back to work.

Parallels Toolbox features

There is another useful tool: Hide Desktop. Use this tool to hide all the files, folders, and other icons on your desktop. To activate it, simply click the Hide Desktop icon in the Toolbox, the Dock, or the Finder. To have the icons displayed again, just click on the tool icon again.

Parallels Toolbox features

When you need to mute your computer’s microphone, you can take advantage of the Mute Microphone feature. Simply click Mute Microphone in the Toolbox. The built-in microphone will be muted and no apps will receive input from the microphone. The tool’s icon indicates that it’s active and that the microphone is muted. To disable muting, click the icon again.

Audio can be recorded from your computer’s built-in microphone using the Record Audio feature. To start a recording, just click Record Audio in the Toolbox. The blinking icon in the Dock shows that audio recording is in progress. You can also record from an external microphone if it is selected as the input source in System Preferences > Sound. To stop recording, click the tool’s icon again (in the Toolbox or in the Dock). The audio file will be saved to the Desktop. Clicking the icon again starts a new recording.

We hope this blog helped you to use Parallels Toolbox features on your Mac! Don’t forget to follow the Support team on Twitter for tips, tricks, and help.

Performance Updates in Parallels Desktop 12

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