Best Free Sticky Notes Utility



With so many things on the plate these days, you may find a reminder that pops up at the designated time and date on the desktop really helpful. It keeps you on task, productive and stops urgent matters from disappearing.

These sticky notes are mostly lightweight, a great helper for your daily activities and a good replacement for pieces of physical paper notes stuck around.

They can be brightly colored and moved around on the desktop, effectively organized, saved, printed or shared with others depending on how well these note management software tools are designed to suit your needs. Check out below our rated products.


Rated Products


A computerised version of yellow notes stuck to the monitor

Our Rating: 
License: Free
Stickies is robust, does all the basics well and provides a range of useful advanced features. Large selection of skins available.
Possible overkill for users wanting just a "sticky note".
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A portable program that manages sticky notes well and offers all the options that Stickies does

Our Rating: 
License: Free (Open source)
Images can be readily pasted into memos. A full range of advanced features, including online synchronisation/back up services services including Drop Box and Google Drive. Notes can also be posted to social media and social media posts downloaded to notes.
Use of skins reduces functionality. Creating a new note is not as straightforward as it should be. Defining the usual hot key combo for this funtion (Ctrl+N) is likely to cause you problems when using other programs.
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7 Sticky Notes  

A promisingly useful utility offers options for linking your note to a file

Our Rating: 
License: Free
Good range of useful advanced features, including online synchronization with cloud services.
Inserting large and/or multiple images into notes results in significant slow-down, and other problems. You can only create one new note at a time.
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An easy-to-use tool to place sticky notes on your desktop with appealing interfaces

Our Rating: 
License: Free
Elegant interface. No special installation instructions for portable install.
Simple function set, limited alarm and reminder functions.
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Post-it Software Notes Lite  

The classic post-it notes with a simple interface for 3M loyalists

Our Rating: 
License: Free
Classic Post-it look, simple interface.
No longer supported by the developer, limited functionality.
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Honorable Mention

Internote, a Firefox addon, works almost the same as a sticky note but it's on a webpage rather than on your desktop. It's particularly useful if you're using Firefox browser and need to create personal notes on the webpages you're visiting.

The notes you've created are persistent and will be there once you return to the webpages. You can move, resize, recolor, minimize, import, export, print, delete your notes or choose the pages where a note appears.


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This software review is copy-edited by Glyn Burgess. Please help edit and improve this article by clicking here.

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Average: 4.2 (51 votes)


None of these is giving me what I want.

I'm looking for a simple program that will SIT IN MY WINDOWS TOOL TRAY. Perhaps I can double-click it to create a new note, and single-click it to see a list of existing notes.

Where is there a notes program that will sit in my tool tray?

Such a thing does exist. I don't know how long it took me to find the combination initially because in breaking the file path after an SSD install it took me forever to get it back to the way it was.

Install Stickies (version 8 or higher) and create these settings;

Opacity: 40%

Colour setting -
Red: 30
Green: 30
Blue: 30

Font settings -
Font: Century Gothic
Font colour: White
Font size: 14 (larger font option selected)
Style: None selected
Case: Title case

Font is a personal choice but I think this fits well.

You then need to install the "Glossy Black" theme to get the title bar in black. Save the setting as default and email the full process to yourself in case you need to do it again.

Not sure if the pic will populate - [IMG][/IMG]

It's not without its own issues, In the pic you can see I've highlighted the link as it's too hard to see with the default blue font. I don't paste complete links anymore and in the pic I've changed the highlighter colour to grey from the default fluro colours..
I like how you can tuck it away like a Winamp sliver allowing you to see the title.

I've found the best solution to be Google Keep. Installing it as a Chrome App allows me to pin it to the taskbar, where upon opening it it has it's own window separate from Chrome. It also syncs online, so that I can access my notes whether on my phone or on a browser. It has all the kinds of formatting and organisation necessary for most types of notes, and used in conjunction with Onenote it makes a mean note and research combination. The only minor things I miss are having the notes on the desktop and having the actual app as a standalone, portable application. But I can easily live with those for all the benefits of Keep. If for whatever reason I stop using Keep, the next best thing is, hands-down, Stickies. For a note-taking app it has an amazing amount of features.

Hate to be a wet blanket, but i think they ALL suck. I tried Stickies, Sticky Pad, P-Notes and 7 Sticky Notes. None of them could accomplish the drop-dead-simple task of creating a note in the color combination i wanted [white text on gray field, if you're curious].
They're all so preoccupied with complex features they forget to attend to the basics [i call it Windows-itus]. One of them did [sorry, i forget which] but its user preferences were unsaveable, COL [it's like LOL, only Cry Out Loud!
And, if anybody cares, none of them can attach notes to only one app or folder. either. I know it's freeware and i shouldn't kvetch, but this is less than impressive.

Can't help you with the color combo preference, marni, but "Stickies" WILL attach notes to a particular single file or webpage. It's a bit of a process: when you have typed your note, right-click in the grey "subject" are (you don't need to add a subject), select "On Top," then click on "Attach." You will see a list of all open folders, docs, and web pages. Click on the one you want to attach the note to and you are done.

If you choose an open folder to attach the note to, the note will be visible INSIDE the folder, along with the contents of that folder...NOT on the OUTSIDE of the folder when it is not open, Sorry, qt3dot14, yours is a good idea for an app, maybe someone will write it!

Anyway, the note sticks to its position relative to the window. It disappears when you close the file, web page, or folder. You can change note color, font size, font face (basic Windows fonts), add a highlight...not too bad for a free program!

Has anybody tried Memento?
It's a small program, simple, lightweight(just 345 kB). However it's does support Rich Text Formatting

The stickies reviewed by the writer of this article seems to have reviewed Stickies v 7.

Stickies v 8 is now out and you can very much add images to text notes. In addition, the new Stacked stickies feature absolutely blows all other sticky notes softwares out of the water.

If PNote gets 4 stars, Stickies v 8.0 and above should get atleast 7

Addition using the execrable win 8.1

I need a sticky notes program that will work on the taskbar and does not have adverts.

i cant believe no one has asked this question or hasnt needed this feature already, so here goes:

i need a sticky note that can attach to the OUTSIDE of a windows folder so that when i hover over the folder the note can tell me what's inside the folder without me having to open the folder.

i do a ton of copy-writing and advertising with a substantial amount of versions which are obviously similar in content, title and version number.

as it is now i have to open each folder to see exactly whats in the folder. once or twice a day this is no big deal. but to see inside the folders hundreds of time a day is a time killer to have to open and close folders all day long.

does anyone know of a sticky program that would allow me to attach a sticky to the outside of a folder and see the note when i hovered over the folder?

thanx for any suggestions.

"FileNotes" by JMSoftware might be useful to you.

It's a bit basic and no-frills and hasn't been updated in years but it works fine in x86 Windows 7.

It doesn't operate on mouse-hover though, instead it adds a context menu item to folders and files that lets you open and edit a note specific to that folder or file.

A drawback is that the note window isn't resizable, so long names can get a bit untidy. Also it won't automatically show you what's in the folder ... you would have to generate such a list yourself to copy-paste into the note, but that's easily done and you can edit the folder note directly too.

A couple of screenies -

and the download page -

Alternatively you could use the native Windows ability to add comments to folders and files.

I can't think of anything else at the moment that would do what you want ... QTTabBar comes to mind (mouse-over pop-out submenus) but that only comes as part of an Explorer shell enhancement which contains a whole load of stuff that might be superfluous to your needs.

A recent product I saw recommended elsewhere is GloboNote. Its free and Java based so will run on any platform with Java 6+

was using 7 sticky for a short time but found some bugs. like I could not put more than a few hyperlinks in a note before it started not recognizing the links. otherwise seemed to work well.