This is my site for links to Genuine Free Stuff as well as some useful advice. I use most of these programs regularly. It's good gear. It's all worth having.

** April 2014. Major revamp and update for relevance happening, especially now that support for Windows XP has ended, and now that we all are addicted to our Android phones. A lot of old stuff is going.

This post in particular started this whole website...

I have been building and using computers since about the Ice Age, from DOS 3 through to Windows 7.
I have been mucking about with mobile phones for quite some time, using Symbian S60 and then Android.

Press F8 at boot to start in safe mode - Windows XP and 7
To see the details of you computer, download, install and run 'Speccy' - shows Operating System, Firewall, Anti-virus and hardware.
If you think you have a virus, start here 'Free Online Virus Scan'. Try any or all, and be patient.

April 5, 2014

Free Software for Windows XP and Windows 7 PCs - April 2014

This page is a summary of all the cool free software I have found and tried myself.
Each heading is the link to that site to download the software. Go nuts.

April 2014. This was my second ever post for this website. It's time for a revamp and to check relevance of some of this Genuine Free Stuff.

Please note that support for Windows XP ends April 8, 2014.
See these links to Microsoft if you haven't made the move to Windows 7 yet.

http://support.microsoft.com/ph/1173/en-au and this one too
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-gb/eos

7-Zip for zipping and unzipping files.
http://www.7-zip.org/

"7-Zip is a file archiver with a high compression ratio."
running on my computer



Audacity. The Free, Cross-Platform Sound Editor.
http://audacity.sourceforge.net/

"Audacity is free, open source software for recording and editing sounds. It is available for Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows, GNU/Linux, and other operating systems."running on my computer



Autoruns
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb963902.aspx

"This utility, which has the most comprehensive knowledge of auto-starting locations of any startup monitor, shows you what programs are configured to run during system bootup or login, and shows you the entries in the order Windows processes them.
These programs include ones in your startup folder, Run, RunOnce, and other Registry keys.
You can configure
Autoruns to show other locations, including Explorer shell extensions, toolbars, browser helper objects, Winlogon notifications, auto-start services, and much more.Autoruns goes way beyond the MSConfig utility bundled with Windows Me  and XP."

running on my computer



Belarc Advisor 
http://www.belarc.com/free_download.html

"The Belarc Advisor builds a detailed profile of your installed software and hardware, missing Microsoft hotfixes, anti-virus status, CIS (Center for Internet Security) benchmarks, and displays the results in your Web browser."


running on my computer - this is pretty cool. It gives a breakdown of all the hardware and software on your computer. A truly essential look at exactly what's going on under the hood.






BootRacer 1.0
http://www.softpedia.com/get/System/System-Miscellaneous/BootRacer.shtml

This one is fun. Install and customise and reboot and race the clock.
** April 2014 - still valid if you run XP. My boot time in Windows 7 is a few unnoticeable seconds - one good reason to make the move.

"The BootRacer application was designed to be a small tool that will allow you to check your Windows boot speed.
Race your Windows boot using BootRacer and check your boot rating. If your computer boot time less than one minute you will get Excellent rating! Otherwise you need to speed up your Windows boot!"
running on my computer



Celestia - updated to SourceForge April 2014
http://sourceforge.net/projects/celestia/

"The free space simulation that lets you explore our universe in three dimensions.
Celestia runs on Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X
."
Words don't do it justice. this is a cool piece of free software. You can get lost in it for hours.
The picture doesn't do it justice either. You can put on spaceships from Star Wars or Star Trek and all sorts of cool things. I have the Death Star orbiting Earth's Moon.
running on my computer





DVD Fab Decrypter -updated April 2014 to Softpedia.
http://www.softpedia.com/get/CD-DVD-Tools/CD-DVD-Rip-Other-Tools/DVDFab-HD-Decrypter.shtml

"DVDFab HD Decrypter 5.1.0.0 (October 10, 2008)
DVDFab HD Decrypter is a simple version of DVDFab Platinum.
It copies entire DVD movie to hard disk, and removes all the protections (CSS, RC, RCE, APS, UOPs and Sony ARccOS) while copying.
It also comes with full HD-DVD and Blu-ray support (Removes AACS)."
running on my computer



End It All  - updated April 2014
http://www.docsdownloads.com/enditall-1.htm

"EndItAll is an ultra powerful Windows process killer than attempts to rid your system of those files that have either frozen your system or simply refuse to budge.
However, unlike Windows very basic process manager, it also indicates to what programs each process relates to which stops you shutting down anything essential which for me, is the real beauty of this program.
"
running on my computer. This is a very useful program to kill annoying programs, before you then go hunting them to uninstall them. Be warned, this is a powerful program.



FastStone Image Viewer
http://www.faststone.org/

******** The only free program I have found that will save a .JPG as a .PDF

"An image browser, converter and editor that supports all major graphic formats."running on my computer



FileHippo.com Update Checker 
http://www.filehippo.com/updatechecker/

"The Update Checker will scan your computer for installed software, check the versions and then send this information to FileHippo.com to see if there are any newer releases.
These are then neatly displayed in your browser for you to download."

running on my computer - this is a pretty cool free program to help you keep other free programs up to date. I would call this an essential program.



FLV player.  link updated April 2014.
http://flv-player.us/?src=mdv

"FLV Player is a standalone utility to play Adobe Flash Video (FLV and H.264 / MPEG-4) files with."
Combine this with Firefox DownloadHelper to save and watch YouTube videos **April 2014  - redundant now due to the many changes to Firefox and YouTube. The program still works though.

running on my computer



Google Earth - link updated April 2014
http://www.google.com/earth/

running on my computer. This is a must-have program.




  Hamsin Clipboard
http://www.iisr-cnc.com/hamsin/

A three-in-one easy-to-use clipboard extension utility that allows:
   - tracking clipboard history of the last ten clips which can be later
      returned back to the clipboard or directly pasted into applications,
   - pasting several copied clips automatically one after another or merged together,
   - saving favorite or commonly used clips for future pasting.

Here it is running on my computer.


Inkscape
http://www.inkscape.org/en/

"An Open Source vector graphics editor, with capabilities similar to Illustrator, CorelDraw, or Xara X, using the W3C standard Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) file format.
Inkscape supports many advanced SVG features (markers, clones, alpha blending, etc.) and great care is taken in designing a streamlined interface.
It is very easy to edit nodes, perform complex path operations, trace bitmaps and much more. We also aim to maintain a thriving user and developer community by using open, community-oriented development."
running on my computer




Magical Jelly Bean Keyfinder. Seriously.
** April 2014- still good for Windows 7
http://www.softpedia.com/get/System/System-Miscellaneous/Magical-Jelly-Bean-Keyfinder.shtml

The MJBKF will retrieve your Windows product key from your registry, for example.



"The Magical Jelly Bean Keyfinder is a freeware utility that retrieves your Product Key used to install windows from your registry.

Magical Jelly Bean Keyfinder will work on any system of the following type: Windows 95, 98, ME, 2000, XP, Server 2003, Windows Vista, Office XP, Office 2003, and Office 2007.
It now has the options to copy the key to clipboard, save it to a text file, or print it for safekeeping."

mpTrim -
http://www.mptrim.com/

"mpTrim is a simple and easy to use MP3 editor. Use it to improve your MP3 collection."
This is useful for making ring tones for your mobile phone.


Microsoft Office Live Workspace - now OneDrive.
**April 2014 - old, old, old. Sorry about that. This has all migrated to Microsoft OneDrive
https://onedrive.live.com/about/en-gb/

No screen shots as I don't use this... but I might sample it.

Microsoft Virtual PC -link updated April 2014.
http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=24439

Woo Hoo. This is a nifty program. Free too.
Thanks to Cory down at Infinity Computer for showing me this one. He's a top bloke.

"Save time and money as Virtual PC allows you to maintain the compatibility of legacy and custom applications during migration to new operating systems and increases the efficiency of support, development, and training staffs.

With Microsoft® Virtual PC 2007, you can create and run one or more virtual machines, each with its own operating system, on a single computer. This provides you with the flexibility to use different operating systems on one physical computer. "

Running on my computer. I am setting up a Virtual PC for running old DOS games. Sigh, yes it's true.



I use this to play old legacy games like Duke Nukem 3D which require specific sound cards and video cards.

Open Office .
http://www.openoffice.org/

This is an essential download. It's all free. If you are having any troubles with or can't afford Microsoft Word and Excel, grab this for free instead.
"OpenOffice.org 3
is the leading open-source office software suite for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, graphics, databases and more."


"It is available in many languages and works on all common computers.
It stores all your data in an international open standard format and can also read and write files from other common office software packages.
It can be downloaded and used completely free of charge for any purpose."


Opera Web Browser
http://www.opera.com/

"Opera is the only Web browser that comes complete with everything you need to be productive, safe and fast online."

running on my computer - I had to resort to Opera when I was trying to write a Blog on the MMC website using WordPress. I had compatibility issues between WordPress, and Firefox and IE7 web browsers. Opera came to my rescue.




Partition Logic.
http://partitionlogic.org.uk/about/index.php

This is a very handy program for partitioning you hard drive.
It's a good idea to partition your hard drive on your PC.
It's a good idea to keep the C drive for all your programs, and then pick an arbitrary letter, say the Q drive (Get Smart agent Q) for all of My Documents. When you Backup Your PC NOW, you can back up just the drive that you want to. This will save you space and time on that big external hard drive.
If you have just bought yourself a nice new PC, but didn't think to partition your hard drive, then grab yourself Partition Logic to do the job.

"Partition Logic is a free hard disk partitioning and data management tool. It can create, delete, erase, format, defragment, resize, copy, and move partitions and modify their attributes. It can copy entire hard disks from one to another.

Partition Logic is free software, available under the terms of the GNU General Public License. It is based on the Visopsys operating system. It boots from a CD or floppy disk and runs as a standalone system, independent of your regular operating system.

Partition Logic is intended to become a free alternative to such commercial programs as Partition Magic, Drive Image, and Norton Ghost."

Process Explorer -  April 2014 - still very valid.
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb896653.aspx

"Ever wondered which program has a particular file or directory open? Now you can find out. Process Explorer shows you information about which handles and DLLs processes have opened or loaded.
The Process Explorer display consists of two sub-windows.
The top window always shows a list of the currently active processes, including the names of their owning accounts, whereas the information displayed in the bottom window depends on the mode that Process Explorer is in: if it is in handle mode you'll see the handles that the process selected in the top window has opened; if Process Explorer is in DLL mode you'll see the DLLs and memory-mapped files that the process has loaded.
Process Explorer
also has a powerful search capability that will quickly show you which processes have particular handles opened or DLLs loaded."

running on my computer - a massively useful program to see exactly what is running. I use this quite a bit. I often run a check using this nifty program, just to see what's running.



Quick Startup. By Glarysoft .
http://www.glarysoft.com/quick-startup/
** April 2014 - still very valid. I use this a fair bit on my Windows 7 PC.

Here's my latest find. It's a free start-up clean-up program called Quick Sartup.

"Quick StartUp organizes applications that auto-run using Registry, Startup folders in the Start menu and Win.ini file.

Do you have a ton of programs that start automatically each time Windows starts? Surely you are not using all of them right away, so there is no sense waiting for all of them to load and to start at the hourglass. Quick Startup allows you inspect, edit, temporary disable or delete such programs.

When you select a startup entry in the list, Quick StartUp displays detailed information on the program in the Details box at the bottom of the window.

You can easily determine whether or not you wish to have the program started on the basis of the Product name and Company. If you have never heard of the company or the product, then the entry is probably not needed.

Click the check box in front of an entry to clear it, and the program will no longer be started the next time you start Windows. In this way, you can find out for certain whether the entry is needed."
Running on my computer. This is a brilliant program for keeping your boot clean and fast.




If you click the link at the very bottom that says "More Information", it will take you to an online library of most known programs and how relevant they are to your start-up.



Go get it. It's essential stuff.

QuickTime 
http://www.apple.com/quicktime/download/

"Create an immersive, interactive experience for your customers using a variety of media types and formats beyond just audio and video.
The QuickTime file format is a track-based, container-like format that enables you to combine almost any media (audio, video, still images, text, VR, chapters and even alternate languages) in a single movie.
What’s more, you can automate your digital media workflow on both Mac and Windows with AppleScript and Automator support.
"

running on my computer - it pays to keep these free programs up to date.

RealPlayer - link updated April 2014
http://www.real.com.au/#choice

"Key Features
Support all major formats
1 click download & record of web videos
Limited audio & video control
Limited Access to Movie Library 200+ movies & TV series
Ads-supported viewing."

running on my computer - it pays to keep these free programs up to date.
** You can use this to then create a playlist of downloaded YouTube videos.



Revo Uninstaller- link updated April 2014
http://www.revouninstaller.com/revo_uninstaller_free_download.html

"Revo Uninstaller helps you to uninstall software and remove unwanted programs installed on your computer even if you have problems uninstalling and cannot uninstall them from "Windows Add or Remove Programs" control panel applet.
Revo Uninstaller is a much faster and more powerful alternative to "Windows Add or Remove Programs" applet!
With its advanced and fast algorithm, Revo Uninstaller analyzes an application's data before uninstall and scans after you uninstall an application.
After the program's regular uninstaller runs, you can remove additional unnecessary files, folders and registry keys that are usually left over on your computer.
Even if you have a broken installation, Revo Uninstaller scans for an application's data on your hard disk drives and in the Windows registry and shows all found files, folders and registry keys so you can delete them."

Running on my computer. Ya gotta have this if you need to dig a pesky program out of the registry. This tool is the gear. Have a look at that pic below. Nothing else I know of will let me 
tick all the registry items to remove. Go get it.




Sib Icon Editor .
http://www.sibcode.com/icon-editor/index.htm

"Sib Icon Editor is a free icon utility for Windows.
It allows to create and edit icon images and manage icon files and libraries.
"

running on my computer. I use this a bit for editing PNG files. I used it to make my GFSL icon.


Softpedia
http://www.softpedia.com/

A wonderful site for searching for free software.
You will find lots of good things here.


Stickies - yellow sticky notes.
http://www.zhornsoftware.co.uk/stickies/
  • Once on screen, stickies will remain where placed until closed, even through reboots
  • Stickies appearance can be customised; fonts, colours and buttons may be changed, and styles saved. Stickies can be resized.
  • Stickies can snap to each other and to the sides of the screen to keep them neatly lined up
  • Stickies can be attached to a web site, document or folder so they only show when it's on screen
  • Stickies can be hidden for a certain period, until a specified date and time, or to wake every day, week or month, to act as reminders.
  • Stickies can have alarms set to ensure you notice them at a point you choose
  • Stickies works with Windows Vista
  • Stickies is small and simple, it writes to a single text file, and does not alter the registry
  • ...and Stickies is completely free!
running on my computer. This is very handy. Donate the man a few bucks. You lucky Mac users should have this installed anyway.



TreeSize Free .
http://www.jam-software.com/freeware/index.shtml

** April 2014 - still very valid. Even with a terabyte drive, it's good to know just how much stuff you have accumulated and maybe need to delete.

"Every hard disk is too small if you just wait long enough.
TreeSize Free tells you where precious space has gone to.
TreeSize Free can be started from the context menu of a folder or drive and shows you the size of this folder, including its subfolders.
You can expand this folder in Explorer-like style and you will see the size of every subfolder. Scanning is done in a thread, so you can already see results while TreeSize Free is working.
The space, which is wasted by the file system, can be displayed and the results can be printed in a report.
"
running on my computer - a very useful program to see where all that space has gone
Give it time to run. There is a tiny status bar at top left that is easy to miss.





Windows in a box 2.0
** April 2014 - still very valid if you are running XP.
http://www.softpedia.com/get/Windows-Widgets/System-Utilities/Windows-in-a-box.shtml

"Access all the features of windows xp on your desktop.
Ever get tired of searching for a setting inside the control panel?"
running on my computer. I use this a little bit when I am digging in the guts of my operating system.


"Inside Windows XP are hundreds of settings that require endless clicking through the Operating System that can get really frustrating. Windows in a box was designed to eliminate all that.

Sits on your desktop, easy to navigate, and puts an end to all the frustration of endless searching for settings.
Spyware, Adware and Malware free. Requires little memory to run, and nothing to install."

ZMatrix.. The coolest piece of software ever. EVER.
http://zmatrix.sourceforge.net/index.html#Download

"ZMatrix is an animated desktop background which displays streaming characters in a style similar to what was used in the movie 'The Matrix'." This is dead cool.
running on my computer



Now there's a of of free stuff to keep your busy for a while.
Cheers. Si.
Post a Comment