Manage your passwords with the new RoboForm 7

The latest version of this powerful password manager throws in a new look and feel, support for Google Chrome, and offers an annual subscription to install it on multiple PCs.

Lance Whitney/CNET

Managing the passwords for all the Web sites you use is a neverending challenge, but one tool that can help is RoboForm. Siber Systems recently upgraded its popular password manager to version 7 with a variety of new features and enhancements.

For those of you not familiar with the product, RoboForm lets you create, save, and use a different strong password for any Web site where you need to log in. Instead of you having to juggle dozens of different accounts, RoboForm does it for you, automatically filling in your username, password, and other details at each site.

The new version offers a cleaner, simpler look and feel to its menus and toolbars and in the RoboForm Editor where you can browse, rename, delete, and modify all of your Web site accounts. Previous versions of RoboForm directly supported only Internet Explorer and Firefox. Version 7 now fully works in Google Chrome and Opera 10 (but not yet 11).

RoboForm 7 now offers a bookmark feature, letting you use and synchronize the same bookmarks across multiple browsers and PCs. A new multiple login feature lets you connect to several commonly used Web sites in one shot.

I run RoboForm on several PCs, so in the past I've had to buy a separate license for each one. But now the company offers a new option called RoboForm Everywhere, which lets you install the software on as many PCs as you'd like for one annual subscription. This feature stores your passwords on RoboForm's cloud-based system where they can sync with your various PCs.

Beyond the pros, I did find a few cons with the new version.

The integration with Chrome didn't always work smoothly. My customized Google home page includes modules and gadgets for different Web sites and accounts. In IE and Firefox, RoboForm is able to see and log me in to each module separately. But using Chrome, RoboForm couldn't detect the fields for username and password in each individual module, preventing me from logging in to those sites.

RoboForm will run on the Mac, though it supports Firefox and Chrome for the Mac only through the use of extensions that are more limited in functionality compared with the full program.

Finally, I wish Siber didn't require RoboForm Everywhere to store account credentials in the cloud. I'd prefer not to keep all my passwords on one lone server and just be able to sync them locally among my different PCs.

Siber offers a free version of RoboForm but limits you to just 10 login accounts. The full Pro Desktop version will set you back $29.95, while RoboForm Everywhere costs $19.95 per year ($9.95 the first year). Overall, RoboForm 7 is a solid upgrade to an already effective product and a good way to make sure your passwords are secure and easy to use.

 

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