Has it been a long almost-week for anyone else who upgraded on day one of Snow Leopard? My upgrade experience went swimmingly, with the glaring exception of iStat Menus not working. Since then, iSlayer.com (home of iStat Menus) has been set as my homepage so I can check it obsessively for news of a 10.6 compatible update. This morning was especially bright and beautiful, and was only made more so by the release of iStat Menus version 2.0, which of course, is Snow Leopard compatible!
Quickly, iStat Menus (a Preference Pane in System Preferences) puts all the system monitoring information you could want, right in the menu bar (that bar at the top of your screen, if you’re a recent Switcher). I hadn’t realized how often I used the CPU, Memory, and Date& Time meters, until they were unavailable to me. I run Windows XP in Parallels at work, so keeping a close eye on my MacBook Pro’s resources has become important to me so that my work doesn’t hit any speed bumps. Additionally, there are meters for Disk Usage, Disk Activity, Network, and Temp Sensors. (They also have an iPhone app that does the same thing, monitoring both your Mac, remotely, and your iPhone.)
The new 2.0 version, above everything else, is Snow Leopard compatible. But the Preference Pane that iStat Menus lives within also got a nice interface update. Now it’s possible to drag and drop the visual elements that you’d like to be displayed in the Menu Bar. It functions sort of like a live preview, and is a nice new feature. The premise of this utility is fairly basic, and doesn’t need much updating otherwise — but who doesn’t love a shiny new GUI?
iStat Menus is donationware, meaning you may use it for nothing. But once you realize how often you rely on it, how could you not kick the developer a few well-deserved dollars?