Must have freeware programs

Dec 6, 2008   //   by Richard   //   IT  //  Comments Off on Must have freeware programs

Update as of May 27, 2018 – I no longer use a number of the programs listed below, however for reference sake I’ve left this blog post.

Do you use programs that you cannot image living without? Are there programs that you think I would enjoy using? If there are, please share them with us. In the meantime, I have noted a number of freeware programs that I use and you may find useful. I have enclosed a link to the website (click on the name of the program) with a brief description from the software provider.

Must have freeware programs

“SyncBack is our freeware program that helps you easily backup and synchronize your files to: the same drive; a different drive or medium (CDRW, CompactFlash, etc); an FTP server; a Network; or a Zip archive.”

“7-Zip is a file archiver with a high compression ratio.”

“Eraser is an advanced security tool (for Windows), which allows you to completely remove sensitive data from your hard drive by overwriting it several times with carefully selected patterns.”

Family Safety (Update: URL no longer working)
“As a parent, you want to help make your family’s experiences safer and more secure, and you want to provide good guidance. Windows Live Family Safety can help if you are running Windows XP. This download is not required if you are running Windows 7 as it has Parental Controls built in. ”

“Notepad++ is a free (as in “free speech” and also as in “free beer”) source code editor and Notepad replacement that supports several languages.\ Running in the MS Windows environment, its use is governed by GPL License.”

“KeePass is a free open source password manager, which helps you to manage your passwords in a secure way. You can put all your passwords in one database, which is locked with one master key or a key file. So you only have to remember one single master password or select the key file to unlock the whole database. The databases are encrypted using the best and most secure encryption algorithms currently known (AES and Twofish).”

Lupas Rename 2000
“Lupas Rename is a FREEWARE program developed to rename a few or a massive number of files with a lot of features.”

Moffsoft FreeCalc
“Moffsoft FreeCalc is a great replacement for your existing Windows® calculator.”

Mozilla Firefox (Update: You may also want to consider: Vivaldi)
“The award-winning Firefox Web browser has security, speed and new features that will change the way you use the Web. Don’t settle for anything less.”

MWSnap (Update: You may also consider Greenshot)
“MWSnap is a small yet powerful Windows program for snapping (capturing) images from selected parts of the screen.”
“A portable app is a computer program that you can carry around with you on a portable device and use on any Windows computer. When your USB flash drive, portable hard drive, iPod or other portable device is plugged in, you have access to your software and personal data just as you would on your own PC. And when you unplug the device, none of your personal data is left behind.”

“PuTTY is a free implementation of Telnet and SSH for Win32 and Unix platforms, along with an xterm terminal emulator.”

Skype (Update: You may also want to consider Signal)
“Make calls from your computer — free to other people on Skype and cheap to phones and mobiles around the world.”

“SMPlayer intends to be a complete front-end for MPlayer, from basic features like playing videos, DVDs, and VCDs to more advanced features like support for MPlayer filters and more.”

“Powerful protection against spyware, adware, browser hijackers, dialers and other potentially unwanted software. Trusted and effective.”

[Update – Effective December 31, 2010 Microsoft discontinued SteadyState. However, it is still possible to prepare a shared computer using Windows 7 native features and support tools]
“You can’t always prevent problems during a user session, but now you can undo the whole session. Learn how Windows SteadyState can return your computer and hard disk to its exact condition before the user touched it, simply by rebooting.”

TrueCrypt (Update: TrueCrypt is no longer being offered, you may want to consider looking at VeraCrypt)
“TrueCrypt is free open-source disk encryption software for Windows Vista/XP, Mac OS X, and Linux”

I also use the following, but do not classify them as “must haves”.

AVG Free 8.0
“Basic antivirus and antispyware protection for Windows available to download for free. Limited features, no support, for private and non-commercial use only.”

“Cain & Abel is a password recovery tool for Microsoft Operating Systems. It allows easy recovery of various kind of passwords by sniffing the network, cracking encrypted passwords using Dictionary, Brute-Force and Cryptanalysis attacks, recording VoIP conversations, decoding scrambled passwords, recovering wireless network keys, revealing password boxes, uncovering cached passwords and analyzing routing protocols…Be warned that there is the possibility that you will cause damages and/or loss of data using this software and that in no events shall the author be liable for such damages or loss of data.”

“Drupal, an open source content management platform. Equipped with a powerful blend of features, Drupal supports a variety of websites ranging from personal weblogs to large community-driven websites.”

Google Earth
“Google Earth lets you fly anywhere on Earth to view satellite imagery, maps, terrain, 3D buildings and even explore galaxies in the Sky. You can explore rich geographical content, save your toured places and share with others.”

“A fast and easy-to-use calculator that allows to compute message digests, checksums and HMACs for files, as well as for text and hex strings. It offers a choice of 13 of the most popular hash and checksum algorithms for calculations.”

“K9 is an email filtering application that works in conjunction with your regular POP3 email program and automatically classifies incoming emails as spam (junk email) or non-spam without the need for maintaining dozens of rules or constant updates to be downloaded. It uses intelligent statistical analysis that can result in extremely high accuracy over time.”

Mobipocket Reader (Update – is no longer being offered)
“From eBooks and eNews to reference material and desktop documents, Mobipocket Reader gives you access to thousands of titles including current bestsellers, world renowned dictionaries, as well as major enews websites, RSS feeds and weblogs.

Mobipocket Creator (Update – is no longer being offered)
“Whether you need to create personal content to take along with you, distribute or sell ebooks to others, or design more advanced content and applications, the Mobipocket Creator family of products enables to easily create ebooks from a variety of sources to be viewed on all the PDA and smartphone platforms where Mobipocket Reader is supported.”

Opanda IExif Viewer
“Professional EXIF / GPS / IPTC Info Viewer”

“Stunnel is a program that allows you to encrypt arbitrary TCP connections inside SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) available on both Unix and Windows. Stunnel can allow you to secure non-SSL aware daemons and protocols (like POP, IMAP, LDAP, etc) by having Stunnel provide the encryption, requiring no changes to the daemon’s code.”

“Tor is a software project that helps you defend against traffic analysis, a form of network surveillance that threatens personal freedom and privacy, confidential business activities and relationships, and state security.”

VMware Player
“This free desktop virtualization software application makes it easy to operate any virtual machine created by VMware Workstation, VMware Fusion, VMware Server or VMware ESX, as well as Microsoft Virtual Server virtual machines or Microsoft Virtual PC virtual machines.”

“Wireshark is an award-winning network protocol analyzer developed by an international team of networking experts.”

Programs I am currently playing with:

K9 Web Protection (Update: URL no longer working)
“K9 Web Protection is our free Internet filtering and control solution for the home. K9 puts YOU in control of the Internet so you can protect your kids.”

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