16. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

16.1. What is Keypirinha

Keypirinha is a fast launcher for keyboard ninjas on Windows.


  • Quickly find and launch plethora of items like applications, files, bookmarks, URLs, sessions (PuTTY, WinSCP, FileZilla), registry keys, ...
  • Launch a search on any configured website or online dictionary
  • Language translations on-the-fly
  • Evaluate mathematical expressions
  • Base conversion of numbers
  • Search your environment variables
  • Launch a copied URL directly (http, mailto, skype, ...)
  • Split a URL and convert its arguments to JSON
  • Switch to a running application by name
  • Hash a string (CRC32, MD5, SHA, ...)
  • Generate random UUIDs, passwords, bytes sequences
  • Naturally associate a keyword to a specific item
  • Machine-specific and/or user-specific configuration
  • And more, see Shipped Packages


  • Freeware, no nag screen, no time limit, no ads
  • Customizable GUI (colors, fonts, toggling and positioning of elements)
  • Lightning fast
  • Fairly small memory footprint
  • Battery friendly
  • File-driven configuration
  • Steep but rewarding learning curve
  • Written in C++, exposes a Python3 API for its plugins

You can think of Keypirinha as an alternative to Launchy and a cousin of Alfred.

See the First steps chapter for more information.

16.2. Why a new Launcher?

There are already existing launchers for Windows out there and we have tried a lot of them before deciding to develop Keypirinha. Including the inspiring Synapse, which unfortunately supports Linux only.

They are either not keyboard-only oriented, not flexible enough, not always extensible, too bloated, too slow or just outdated (implying a broken support for recent platforms).

Keypirinha has been started as a personal project and is not meant to be better than all of them. It offers a recent alternative that is fast, flexible, memory efficient, battery friendly and smart about the search results it provides.

By battery friendly, we mean that with the default configuration and plugins, Keypirinha consumes zero CPU cycle once it has been initialized and when not used (i.e. most of its lifetime).

That being said, by design, its graphical user interface (GUI) is (very) minimalistic and supports functional tweaking only. Also, its learning curve can be more steep, depending on how you want to use it and extend it. That makes Keypirinha quite a niche project, mostly addressed to advanced users.

16.3. So... A replacement to the Start Menu?

Many people who have not tried Keypirinha (or sometimes any other keystroke launcher), tend to think that it’s just about being a replacement to the Start Menu, the system’s Search feature, or even just organized shortcuts and batch scripts.

It would be a mistake to think of Keypirinha as an application launcher only. Keypirinha itself is very generic. It is just a database of items sweetened with a small search engine. In other words, it can launch any kind of task provided by its plugins. May it be a document, a URL, creating an alarm at a given time, launching a web search, directly launching a FileZilla session, switching to a running application using its name, evaluate a mathematical expression inline, ...

Its whole architecture is about being generic, configurable and scriptable (Python3). And its search engine also tries to be smarter and to give better score to tasks that you most likely want to launch given the current search terms and context.

Generally speaking, a launcher like Keypirinha may deeply impact your everyday work-flow.

16.4. Is it open source?

The application itself is distributed as a freeware.
Its official plugins are open source.

16.5. How to support the project?

Keypirinha is distributed for free and you are absolutely not required to participate in any way, so please do not feel that you have to.

However, the application itself and the official packages are the result of several hundreds of hours of development spent by a single person so if you do wish to show your support, please know that it is greatly appreciated and taken as an encouragement for future developments.

There are several ways to support Keypirinha:

16.6. How my donation will be used?

Small donations (10 euros) will probably be spent on coffee to cheer up the developer in his cave. Higher amounts will be spared for:

  • the hosting of the dynamic website and the packages redistribution platform that is planned
  • the domain name
  • a digital certificate for signing Keypirinha‘s binaries
  • some software/hardware used directly in the development of the project

If you wish your donation to go towards something specific, or if you have questions or special enquiries, PM @polyvertex first.

16.7. Where does this weird name come from?!

Keypirinha is a combination from the terms Keyboard and Caipirinha, the brazilian cocktail, which the author really encourages you to try if you haven’t yet!

16.8. Any translation?

Currently, Keypirinha is available in English only and there is no plan to support additional languages in a near future. For now, we prefer to focus on bug fixing and the implementation of functional features.