Orbit provides a circle based menu for Windows

Martin Brinkmann
Jun 2, 2008
Updated • Mar 2, 2011
Software, Windows

Short question to get this article started: What is the main advantage of a circle based menu when compared to the usual rectangular menus in Windows ? Right, every menu entry is the same distance away from the mouse pointer. It looks nicer as well but that's just a cosmetic difference.

Orbit (discovered at the Donation Coder forum)provides a circle menu to Windows that should not be confused with the right-click menu. A middle-mouse click opens the circle menu with the five items Internet, Applications, Windows Explorer, Tasks and Configuration. Some of the items contain another circle that displays applications. The tasks item for example displays all open windows in a second circle while the Internet circle lists the three default items Internet Explorer, MSN Messenger and Outlook Express in its second circle. Those default items can be removed if they are not used or installed on the system.

New items can be added by right-clicking on a circle. If you wanted to add Firefox to the Internet circle you would right-click that circle and select New Item from the menu. The program requires a link to a file, folder or website and an icon that goes along with it. Hint: I have been using the icon search engine Icon Look to find icons for the additions which can be dragged and dropped into the configuration dialog.

Optional information like parameters can be added to some items (e.g. programs) that are added. The initial configuration takes some time, mainly to add commonly used applications, files and even bookmarks to Orbit.

What I personally like is that the middle-mouse circle menu is accessible everywhere. Most applications, like Firefox, Thunderbird or Opera use their own right-click menu which means that this is not accessible when one of those programs is open. The Orbit middle-mouse menu works fine everywhere. I have not tested it in full screen games though which is probably the only type of applications where it is blocked.


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  1. Solaris said on June 2, 2008 at 5:21 pm

    If that is the case, then why am i still getting errors as i have already installed .NET 1.1 framework and .NET 2.0 service pack 1.

  2. Martin said on June 2, 2008 at 4:34 pm

    I think it’s the .Net Framework 1.1. A nightly build that requires the net framework 2 is available at the homepage http://www.ecocardio.com.br/orbit/

  3. Solaris said on June 2, 2008 at 4:30 pm

    Does it require .NET framework? if yes then, which version? I asked bcoz its not specified in Orbit website.

    I get the following message, when i try to run orbit.exe:
    Application has generated an exception that could not be handled.

    Process id=0xd14 (3348), Thread id=0xb64 (2916)

  4. Thomas Murphy said on June 2, 2008 at 11:31 am

    Looks like a Rotary Phone.

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