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Recommended software that I didn't write (you can find that here, by the way). There's all kind of other stuff here, some useful, some fun. They're all here because I use, or have used them, and find them to be decent. Try them for size. If there are any broken links, drop me a line and let me know. And by the way, you can click on the Top anywhere to return here.

Essential    For web-authors    For programmers    File management    Utilities
  • Ad-Aware - spots spyware, keyloggers, selected traditional Trojans, diallers, malware, browser hijackers and more.
  • AVG Anti-Virus - freeware anti-virus software with all the features of its commercial equivalents.
  • Google Toolbar - not only does this integrate the king of search engines into your browser, it also has a superb pop-up blocker.
  • Spybot Search & Destroy - another excellent anti-spyware program, with the added bonus of a nifty little "knight moves" easter egg game - see if you can find it!
  • ZoneAlarm - not got a firewall on your PC? Are you mad? This is a freeware personal firewall, stopping nasty people doing nasty things to your computer.
  • 1st Page 2006 - a comprehensive freeware web-authoring package. Not WYSIWYG but pretty slinky. I've tried just about every free equivalent I can find, and this is the best. Whilst excessive for many users (try the simpler Markup Processor if that's you), it's pretty impressive for a freebie.
  • SmartFTP - okay, so there are loads of freeware FTP programs out there but this stands out: highly configurable, with a cracking interface, SmartFTP lets you "drag'n'drop" to transfer files.
  • Xenu LinkSleuth - a freeware alternative to WebAnalyzer, Xenu checks all the hyperlinks on a web-page (or pages) to see if they are current, and presents results in a colour-coded format. These can then be printed, or exported to the format of your choice. Makes keeping your site up-to-date a doddle.
  • Icon Collector Graphics Editor - an icon editor offering more features, even in the slightly feature-limited shareware version, than any other editor I've seen.
  • MWSnap - a small but powerful freeware screen capture tool, with a sensible range of capturing options. Handy for producing documentation screenshots.
  • Setup Generator - so you're a programmer who wants to build an installation kit but doesn't want to shell out for InstallShield, Wise or similar? This is for you then - it builds robust setup executables, including configurable dialogue boxes, shortcut and registry key creation, uninstallation support, and so on. And it's completely free!
  • TextPad - a tremendous shareware (uncrippled - it just nags occasionally) text editor with configurable syntax files, so programmers and web-authors can view colour-coded text. Also has the fantastically useful feature of being able to find/replace across all open documents at once.
  • CKRename - excellent, flexible tool for bulk-renaming files. Very handy, with many user-defined options. Freeware.
  • Eraser - even after you delete files on your PC and empty the Recycle Bin they can still be recovered. Eraser is freeware that integrates with Explorer and lets you completely remove all trace of deleted files. Choose the 35-pass cleaning mode and be sure that no-one can retrieve anything once it has been "erased".
  • Files and Folders - another essential utility that lets you review and, in some cases, modify file properties. A must-have if you need to modify a file's datestamp information. Freeware.
  • InfoRapid - a powerful text replacement utility. Search for and replace text in files across a folder, directory or drive. Comes with file type filters and other options. Can save a LOT of time. Freeware
  • Restorer 2000 - you've deleted a file and emptied your Recycle Bin... but now you need the file back. This small program may be able to help! Shareware.
  • STG FolderPrint - a handy tool for producing lists of files in a directory or drive. Lists can then be exported or printed. Highly configurable and invaluable when archiving or trying to clear down old drives. Shareware.
  • CamStudio - open-source project that enables you to record screen activity as an AVI file! Freeware.
  • CD-Burner XP Pro - excellent freeware CD ripper, essentially a clone of Nero's commerical offering.
  • Crap Cleaner - this utility protects you by cleaning up all the unwanted history data on your computer. With one click, it can erase the cache, cookies, history, typed URLs, autocomplete memory, index.dat from your browsers, and Window's temp folder, run history, search history, open/save history, recent documents, even Registry rubblish. Freeware
  • Gimp - as good a graphics/drawing package as you can get without paying - like Paint Shop Pro and Photoshop but better 'cos it's free!
  • SnapGraphics - can't afford Visio? Get this instead - it's free! Old... but good. Win 3.x+ (1.32MB).
  • TMPGenc - convert innumerable video formats to MPEGs. Freeware, of course.
  • WordWeb - fed up with the crap thesauri you get in things like Word? Then try this, it's freeware and even gives you the option to embed it (to a certain extent) in your word-processor. There's also a commercial "pro" version, which allows wildcarded word searches and does anagrams, but the freeware version is enough for most folk.

Page updated 02-Feb-2007 18:09:45 GMT

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