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How to handle snippets on a Mac

  SnippetsLab for Mac Do you have snippets? Most of us do. Excerpts range from simple notes we take for a writing project all the way to programming code that is reused time and time again. Over the years I have tried every app I could find, paid for a few, and cried when someone died.

The art of capturing and storing snippets falls into two categories. Those who use snippets as notes and those who use code snippets as programmers or developers. I fall into both classes, hence the need for tools that manage excerpts. Here's how to manage snippets.

Free with a charge

Apple makes it easy to manage text extracts like cake and it's free. Notes. Notes work on Mac, iPhone and iPad, and notes can be synced via iCloud. Notes contain images, tables, formatted text, and each of them can be placed in categories and even shared with others. What should I not like? Once you get to a few hundred categories and a few thousand notes, it's probably not to like because management gets complicated.

At the other end of the scale is the code snippet for encoders; programmers, developers. Over the years I have bought half a dozen such code name apps because they manage complex code snippets with ease with standard text notes (without formatting; if you need to, stick to Notes).

My absolute go-to favorite is SnippetsLab.

 SnippetsLab for Mac

See? Favorites. Folders. Groups. TAG. Categories. Even the correct formatting for different types of codes (CSS is not HTML which is not JavaScript which is not PHP and so on). Add notes, categorize by code, search for, and preview everything stored.

I chose SnippetsLab because of its rich features, backup options and the ability to sync via iCloud, Dropbox, GoogleDrive, et al. It even exports the text library to a zip file for easy offline storage.

The support has also been excellent. A while back, I put a public beta version of macOS on a test Mac to see what applications I use that may be affected by the latest and greatest operating system for Mac users. Everything went well. As we get closer to a new macOS version, app developers begin the mass upgrade process to make sure their applications will work on upgraded Macs.

 SnippetsLab for Mac

When upgrading the daily Mac to the latest macOS, I found that SnippetsLab did not work. It crashed. Often. Ouch. I spend a lot of time in that app, and I needed a quick fix. So I exported all the snippets, changed extensions so that each file could be read appropriately by a text editor, and searched for a replacement.


The Mac App Store is full of notes and code tape collectors applications that have not been upgraded in many years. It is a burial ground. When searching for applications in the Mac App Store, be sure to sort by release date. In general, apps that have recently been upgraded indicate a responsible developer and an application that improves.

My limit for using an application that is not updated is one year. If an application does not receive an update within a year, I consider it to go away and look elsewhere.

As for SnippetsLab, the developer made an appropriate adjustment and sent the app to the Mac App Store. In the meantime, I set up a backup system. I took the exported tags and snippets and organized them into folders and stored them in iCloud. Then I used a text editor to open the folder. It's my backup system. SnippetsLab is the go-to app, but there is a backup in place.

If you like useful features, SnippetsLabs has you covered too.

 SnippetsLab for Mac

We all have our favorite Mac applications that we would hate to lose for whatever reason. To me, SnippetsLab is one, and it's nothing like it. Toss is a word processor as rich formatting options, and even writers and researchers will love it. It's so good, and I have yet to find a better way to capture and manage text and code snippets on a Mac.

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