3.9 out of 5 with 7 ratings

TreePad Reviews

RIP TreePad Developer (FreeByte.com) have disap...

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RIP TreePad.

Update 8-Oct-2019


Developer (FreeByte.com) have disappeared from the web, along with their programs.
Treepad Lite (free) has served me well over the last 2 years, using it all day every day. Win-7 PRO x64

Now looking at MemPad because it is still actively developed (and IMO) a stepup from TreePad Lite..


It's more then a year since the last comments about Treepad from the website Freebyte.com.
The website with all the programs is down, because the owner died.
The owner was my brother, and I want to let people know what happend.
Maybe I can help if someone wants one of his programs. Just let me know, and maybe I can do something.
Maybe no one is reading my message because it's more then a year ago, but it felt like I had to do this.


TreePad has No Competitor

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I have searched a lot, but did not find an app better than TreePad Business or TreePad X Enterprise for Note Taking and Notes Management.

[Edited by luizmenezes, December 02]


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Started using Free Lite on Win-7 PRO x64, 24 hrs ago. All I want are text notes
So simple and a v.small footprint, portable setup is 1.1 MB ... not eleven, that is one-point-one MBs
Its nearest look-a-like TreeLine is 34MB footprint installed ... thirty four MBs :gasp:

With node/folders disabled (in Options) child nodes/articles are easilly identified in the tree pane.
The default classical windows yellow folders on all nodes was a bit ovewhelming.
I like the simple (Win Registry) style

Tree pane on the left and Articles (notes) pane on the right.
The tree does not migrate into the right/articles pane as it does in some other note-takers/PMIs
Both panes can be optioned for font type/size/color and backcolor

Built in hot-keys are almost familiar, although it would be good if they could be customized.
Themes ? Skins (View -> Skins) are very weak ...
By back coloring both panes, PL is less likely to be lost in a sea of windows

Toolbars cannot be modified, other than hidden.
AutoSort toolbars does not work (BUG).
**Toolbars can be reordered by hiding all and enabling them in turn to suit your needs. **

Articles (RHand) pane has some irritations ...

  1. First character is hard to the left, no left hand gutter
  2. Tabs are a gigantic 8 characters wide, there is no option to customize tab widths
    ... I suspect the underlying template is dinosaur MS Notepad

Free Lite could do with an update, last was in Mar-2010
Commercial editions starting with TreePad PLUS are suited to Win-10 (and Linux/Wine)
Products list shows choice of downloads for Windows and Linux

Free Lite suits my simple needs for text only note taker
With ultra lite footprint and no probs in Win-7 PRO x64


Lacking... but still no viable alternative

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Treepad is small, fast, and supports RTF.

I'm continuously desperately searching for an app that will serve me better... Personalbrain / The Brain, OneNote, and Evernote are the closest. However:

  • OneNote and Evernote don't have the infinitely hierarchical structure that I find so important in Treepad. The ability to simply hit a button to add a subtree whenever the detail gets too much and needs breaking out... rather than wrapping your head around categories, pages, sections, yada yada yada,... is crucial for workflow and moving at the speed of your thoughts.
  • PersonalBrain is overkill and very expensive
  • None have a mobile app which is as powerful as the desktop app (ie. you can work/manage from the mobile app, rather than simply doing a partial note/post, which you then have to file when you get back to the full desktop app).

Having said that - Treepad has no real mobile app itself, no cloud service/sync, and no appreciable ongoing development. I'm amazed no-one has come up with a viable cloud/mobile version of Treepad, including Treepad/Freebyte themselves!

[Edited by dam2311, July 04]


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I am extensively using TreePad Enterprise as a Knowledge Base for our production plant.

The ability to export the database to html web based format was extremely powerful in sharing this information.

It was extremely robust, never locking up and flawlessly performing as intended.

I don’t think it’s ability to export all documents as a dynamic tree navigation is available with any other software.

[Edited by samsonrialou, October 21]


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The concept of TreePad is still intriguing after over 17 years of use. I have searched and not yet found alternatives that give me comparable benefits. My main use is taking short memos (ideas, to do's, outlines, links etc.) and sorting the entries in the tree. Even outlinig of projects is quite simple with TreePad. And it is far more convenient to use as a presenting software (yes!) as PowerPoint.

TreePad, I honestly love this program and I hope it will work at least as long as I do. Can't imagine to be without it.


TreePad Lite

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[NOTE: The freeware version of TreePad is now called TreePad Lite. This is a review of TreePad Lite.]

If all you need is straight-up plain text notes in an outline with the ability to search through the tree, then hands down nothing beats TreePad Lite. I've been relying on it for over a decade and it has never let me down. The one feature that is most important to me is that there is a global search function that lists the full path of all the nodes that contain the text string you are searching for. You can then double-click on the search result to go directly to that node, and also search within the node scope only.

The thing that really sets TreePad Lite apart is that it comes in a portable package that is just one tiny (588 KB) executable file, and that's all you need -- no installation required. It's super fast to load, consumes a fraction of the memory that other tree outliners use, and has enough features to make it useful. I've tried just about every free "light" tree outliner out there, but found them all lacking in one feature or another (one tiny app didn't even have a search feature!).

It's not a perfect piece of software -- for example, I have long been annoyed by the fact that you have to manually backspace to delete the previous search term when you perform a node-level search, and the author has never replied to my request to fix this -- but compared to what's out there right now, it's the best fit for me. Seriously, TreePad Lite is pound-for-pound the lightest, fastest freeware out there for organizing plain text in a tree structure.

The only free program that could knock TreePad Lite off its top position (at least in my world) is an open source gem called The Guide. It has a lot going for it, like a more modern and intuitive UI, but as of v2 it is missing that one feature that I can't live without in a tree outliner: the search results only show the node title, not the full node path. This may seem trivial at first, but when you actually start using this extra information having the ability to see the entire taxonomy matching your search string this becomes a very powerful and invaluable tool.