Getting Started

Installing SilverNote

Installing SilverNote on your computer is easy and the entire process takes about a minute.

Step-by-step instructions:

  1. Download the installer.
  2. If your web browser asks what you would like to do with this file, click "Run" or "Save".
  3. If you saved the file, double-click it to begin installation.
  4. SilverNote will automatically launch when installation is complete.

The entire process usually takes less than a minute. If your computer doesn't have the latest Windows components, it may take a few minutes longer for the installer to download some additional packages.

Once it's up and running, let's see how to create your first notebook... Next

Create a Notebook

The first time you run SilverNote, it asks you to provide a name for your first notebook:

New Notebook dialog

Give it any name you like ("Work", "Book Research", "Hawaii Vacation", "Physics Lectures", etc.) and click OK.

A window then appears containing the new notebook:

Freshly-created notebook

You'll see your notebook's name appear in the window title . Below that is a button for adding new notes, which appear as tabs across the top . Most of the window is taken up by the currently-selected note , which is a large canvas for you to add whatever you like.

You can create as many notebooks as you like by clicking the File menu and selecting "New Notebook..." In that menu you'll also see options to rename, delete, and open other notebooks.

File menu

Now that we've created a notebook, let's start jotting down some notes... Next

Jot Stuff Down

A freshly-created notebook contains a crisp new note, thirsty for information:

Jotting stuff down

SilverNote allows you to add many different kinds of information, the most common being simple text. Enter text in SilverNote like you would in any other application: just click on the note and begin typing. You'll see all the usual tools for changing the appearance of your text, including a handy highlighter tool and a drop-down menu for quickly inserting symbols .

With SilverNote, not only can you enter text but you can also manipulate it in useful ways. For example, consider a bulleted list:

Bulleted list

In the above example I see a minus ("-") sign appear next to a bullet when I move my mouse over that list item. If I click that minus sign, the list item collapses, hiding any detail I may not be interested in at the moment:

Bulleted list (collapsed)

The minus sign then turns to a plus ("+") sign, which I can click to re-expand the list item.

In addition, rearranging list items is as easy as using my mouse to click and drag the list item's bullet:

Bulleted list (collapsed)

To explore other ways of working with lists, just click on a list item's bullet and a full menu of options will pop up.

Many types of information are better captured as drawings rather than text, and the easiest way to draw in SilverNote is using the SmartPencil tool. Click the pencil icon and use your mouse to sketch a few drawings. When you're done, right-click or press any key to go back to entering text. You'll notice that all the lines you draw remain fully editable in case you need to make some changes.

Sketching with SmartPencil)

Now click the button along the right edge of the window . This expands a collection of tools for working with symbols, shapes, and lines. Note that many of these tools are also available as buttons at the top of each note should you find that to be more convenient.

Sketching with SmartPencil)

Finally, before moving on to the next section be sure to check out the Insert menu . Here you'll find options for adding tables, files, screenshots and many other objects.

Now that you've seen some of the basic tools for capturing ideas, let's see how ideas can branch-out from one note to another...Next

Link Notes

SilverNote allows you to capture not just bits of information, but also relationships between that information.

One of the simplest way to do this is to create links between notes. For example, let's say I'm making a list of potential vacation destinations:

Vacation ideas

Perhaps I was just reading an article on how delicious traditional Scottish haggis is, and I don't want to forget that when planning my trip. One way to do this is to select the word "Scotland" in my note, then hold hold down the Ctrl key while clicking on the selected text:

Vacation ideas

First, you'll notice this automatically creates a new note (entitled "Scotland") for me to jot down what I've heard about Haggis:


If I click the "Vacation Ideas" tab to go back to my original note, I see the word "Scotland" has been turned into a hyperlink to the newly-created note:

Vacation ideas

In this way, SilverNote allows you to link information like you would in a wiki (but with just a single mouse click). This offers some interesting ways to organize information, which we'll touch on in the next section.

There are other ways we can link to information (including web pages, files, and existing notes), which you can explore by clicking the Insert menu and selecting "Hyperlink".

Now that you've seen how to link notes, we'll see how to use links (and other tools) to start organizing our notebooks... Next

Get Organized

Sometimes its obvious how information should be organized but often it's not. Therefore, SilverNote gives you flexibility in how your organize your notes. In fact, it's perfectly reasonable to not organize your notes at all and just use SilverNote's powerful search engine to find the information you need.

One way to organize your notebook is to create hyperlinks between notes, as introduced in the previous section. For example, one note could act as a table of contents containing links to other notes:

Table of contents

You can also assign notes to categories, where a category is like a traditional folder except that a note can belong to any number of categories (or none at all). To assign a note to a category, click the Add to dropdown in the upper-right corner of the note:

Add to category

This displays a list of categories to which you can assign the note. This list is initially empty so select "Edit Categories..." to create some categories.

Add to category

In the above example, I created several wedding-related categories and then assigned the current note to "Wedding Venue" and "Caterer". Now when I browse or search my notebook, I'll see my current note show up under both of these categories.

To see this in action, click the button along the left edge of the window. This reveals a hierarchical view of all categories and notes in your notebook:

Wedding categories

From this view you can click-and-drag to move items around the hierarchy, or right-click any item for more options.

Next, we'll see how to use some of SilverNote's powerful search features... Next

Search As You Type

To search your notebook, simply click in the search area at the bottom of your window and begin typing the words you're looking for:

Search your notebook

Search results are shown instantly and continually update as you type:

Search as you type

You can limit your searching to a particular category by clicking on "All Notes" and selecting the category to search, or apply additional date/time filters visible on the left side of the search area.

When you've found the note you're looking for, simply double-click it to open the note in a new tab.


Next Steps

This guide provides an ultra-quick introduction to some of the more commonly-used features of SilverNote. Now take some time to explore it on your own and see how it can help you with school, work, or whatever other projects you have going on.

Thanks, and enjoy using SilverNote!