Recommended Freeware

Being a die-hard Windows user isn’t so bad, especially when you can get commerical quality applications for absolutely nothing! This page will list some of the programs I use on a daily basis and I will add to it in future to make a more comprehensive list.

Browsing / Internet Related

Firefox – If you have yet to come to the orange side, you are in for a treat. Forget inexplicable crashes, poor page handling and insane privacy policies (I’m looking at you Internet Explorer!) … Firefox does away with them all! Once you’re up and running, grab a copy of Googlepedia and it will revolutionise the way you search forever!

Wireshark – A very powerful protocol analyser that implements the WinPcap driver to capture network traffic.

Security

CCleaner – Cleans up temporary files, logs, browser cache and much more! Absolutely 5* for keeping a fast, clean and manageable PC.

Hacks / Programming etc.

Eclipse – What’s better than finding a feature-rich AND easy-to-use IDE for Java? How about discovering that it supports C++ and PHP development too! Eclipse is a completely free open source IDE that comes packaged with all the tools you need to make your software LIVE!

OllyDbg – My favourite standalone Windows debugger. Massively supported with a huge repertoire of plugins for dealing with compressed EXE files, resource management and Windows API call mapping (to name just a few).

UPX – The Ultimate Packer for eXecutables lives up to its name. Flawless compression for EXE files without any overhead. Also available for linux and DOS.

File System

7-Zip – My preferred free archiving software.

Image Editing

TweakPNG – The PNG file format has long been recognised as the successor to GIF. Curiously however, two of the major internet browsers render them incorrectly. TweakPNG is a simple utility to remove the gAMA chunk, which is responsible for the colour inconsistency.

Disk / USB Tools

MBR Fix – This utility is a disk “Swiss Army Knife” for partition table editing, backup and restoration. Highly recommended to anyone who has had problems with booting Windows after installing a second operating system and need to get their disk MBR repaired.

USB Image Tool – This great tool saved me a a lot of time when trying to clone the data on a USB stick to another identical (but empty) USB stick. It also gives a good indication of whether or not your disk has any bad sectors (i.e. failing to read/write in device mode).

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