Hain is a keyboard-oriented launcher, search and productivity tool for 64-bit Windows 7 and later.

The program opens with a command bar and a list showing the various actions you can take.

You might start by typing an application name. As you enter each letter, matches appear, and clicking the correct file will launch it.

There's some tolerance for typos. We entered WRD and Microsoft Word still appeared at the top of the list, although if a letter gets substituted (WPRD) you may not be so lucky.

Hain works with links, too - enter a URL and it opens in the default browser.

There's a simple expression evaluator. Enter something like =SIN(45)*2 and the result is displayed.

What's more interesting is that you're able to extend these features with a built-in package manager. As we write, this allows installing plugins to search many websites, launch commands with cmd.exe, start Steam games, send PushBullet pushes, translate text, take simple notes, manage tasks and more.

Need more? Plugins are written in pure JavaScript, and there are plenty of examples to check out, so experienced users can add others as required.

Version 0.4.1:

Fix recent items to be placed always on top
Fix preferences not working

Verdict ratingsratingsratingsratingsratings

Hain is still very new, and there are plenty of problems and omissions. The expression evaluator calculated everything we threw at it, for instance, but there's no apparent way to copy the results to the clipboard. Oops.

Despite that, it's a fun program, portable, adware-free, already useful as a search tool and launcher, and with some promising plugins. Worth a look.