Home Ideas The Best Raycast Extensions for Practically Anything

The Best Raycast Extensions for Practically Anything

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Raycast, which is free for individual users, is my favorite Spotlight replacement. This is an application you can launch with a simple keyboard shortcut to see a simple text box. Type a few characters to do just about anything. There’s plenty of functionality built in—you can launch any application just by beginning to type its name and hitting “Enter,” for example, or you can type a URL and hit “Enter” to open it in your default browser. You can also search for files or toggle various system settings.

That functionality alone would make Raycast worth installing. The truly great thing about Raycast, however, is the plugins. Now, Raycast is far from the first launcher app to offer plugins, but the application is unique for offering a built-in store that allows you to add these plugins in just a few keystrokes. Just type “Store,” hit “Enter,” and you can browse the collection. Failing that, you can browse the Raycast store online.

There are a lot of really useful tools here, and which ones are best is going to vary depending on your workflow. Here are the most useful sorts of plugins I’ve found.

Search your notes

The Raycast window is shown here searching through all of my beer recipes, which are stored in OneNote

Credit: Justin Pot

I brew beer and mostly store my recipes in OneNote. I’m also a big Obsidian user—my personal journal and work life both live there. Raycast makes it easy to search these and other note-taking applications. There are extensions for Apple Notes, OneNote, Obsidian, and even Bear. All of these allow you to search your notes right in Raycast and preview them right there. If you want to open the note, no problem: Just hit enter. It is so great being able to quickly find and pull up such information.

Quickly grab passwords

The Bitwarden extension can search your vault. It can also generate random passwords.

Credit: Justin Pot

Modern password managers integrate well in the browser but it can be annoying to pull up passwords when you’re not browsing. The Raycast extensions for Bitwarden, 1Password, Dashlane, and KeePassXC all make it easy to copy any password in a couple of keystrokes. Just open the plugin, type the password you’re looking for, and hit enter.

You can take this even further and quickly grab two-factor authentication codes. There’s an extension for Authy, which notably still works even though that application no longer offers a desktop app. There’s also an extension that can grab 2FA codes from iMessage, meaning you won’t have to open up your messages just to copy and paste a code. Both work really well.

Control music

I'm searching for

Credit: Justin Pot

I usually know which album I want to listen to next. The Raycast extension for Spotify allows me to quickly type the name of an album and play it. It also works for playlists, artists, and songs. I love being able to quickly start any music without having to fuss around in the Spotify user interface. There’s a similar extension for Apple Music, if that’s your go-to player.

Read Wikipedia

I'm reading the Wikipedia article for Lifehacker in a Raycast window.

Credit: Justin Pot

Wikipedia is an excellent starting point for researching basically anything. The Wikipedia extension for Raycast allows you to search for a page and even read it, all without moving your hands from the keyboard. You can also open the article in your default browser by hitting enter.

Eject drives

Raycast here shows a list of the currently mounted hard drives

Credit: Justin Pot

Ejecting a drive on the Mac means opening the Finder and clicking the eject button in the left-hand sidebar. It’s annoyingly slow. The extension Single Disk Eject shows you all currently connected external drives and allows you to disconnect by hitting Enter. It’s great.

Keep your Mac awake

A menu bar icon, which is shaped like a coffee mug, offers to keep the Mac awake.

Credit: Justin Pot

There are no end to the number of Mac applications that do nothing but keep your Mac awake. The extension Coffee offers this without the need to install an application. You can trigger it from Raycast or you can enable a menu bar icon if you prefer.

So much more

I could go on for a long time. Here’s a few more quick highlights:

  • System monitor lets you quickly look over CPU, memory, and disk use.

  • MyIP shows you your current IP address.

  • Speedtest lets you quickly test your internet connection speed.

  • Shell allows you to run any Terminal command without actually opening the Terminal.

This is just a start: There are so many more tools. I recommend checking out the store to get a better idea of what you can do.

Source: LifeHacker.com