Although I like my MacBook, a lot of my professional work is still performed on computers with a Windows operating system - i.e. either Windows XP, Vista or Windows 7. Actually, the Windows operating system is no that bad. The main problem is rather, that most of the programs that are originally packaged with Windows are lousy (Editor, Paint, Explorer) or an annoyance (Internet Explorer) or both (Media Player). And the most basic programs (like a PDF reader) are still not yet included in the standard package (just perhaps added by the manufacturer, and than usually completely outdated).

BTW, the table is sortable into both directions, just click into any header cell.

Icon Name Version Type Description Also under
Adobe Reader 10.1.x freeware PDF viewer - not my favourite, but certain web applications require Adobe + ****
Amaya 11.3 Open Source WYSIWYG web authoring tool by the W3C + ****
AVG free 9.0 freeware Anti-virus software - not as good as the commercial versions, but free - ****
Avidemux 2.5.x Open Source Video Editor, also good for a wide range of container/codec conversions + *****
Bitvise Tunnelier 4.30 free for individual use SSH and SFTP client (SSH file transfer, terminal and tunneling). Has a beautiful interface, is easy to use and maintains very stable connections. - *****
Calibre 0.8.x freeware Program for organising, reading (epub, mobi) and converting ebooks - *****
DesktopOK 2.29 freeware Tool to save and restore the arrangement of icons on the desktop. Particularly useful, if one has to change screen resolutions. - *****
Dropbox 1.0.x free for file space of 2 GB Utility for synchronizing files between computers + *****
Evernote 4.5.x adware (there is also a paid version) Well structured program more making and organising notes (including PDF and images), with synchonisation between different computers (for all current operating systems) + *****
Faststone Capture 7.0 shareware Sophisticated screen capturing tool - *****
FileZilla Client 3.5.x Open Source FTP client - allows also SFTP + *****
Firefox 9.x Open Source Web browser - together with the numerous plug-ins it was simply the best. The current update policy looks a bit desparate to me. + *****
foobar2000 1.1.x freeware Audio player and converter with rather austere GUI - ****
Foxit Reader 3.2.x freeware Alternative PDF viewer. Much faster than Adobe Acrobat, but makes sometimes troubles if integrated in Firefox. - ****
fre:ac 1.0.x Open Source Audio Encoder / CD ripper (formerly Bonk audio encoder) - ****
FreeCommander 2009.02 freeware Not as good as Total Commander - but free - ****
Google Earth 6.0 freeware No need to explain further + *****
Kaspersky Internet Security 2012 commercial Excellent anti-virus software - the price of a subscription per year and computer is just around 12 € (volume discount) - *****
Mp3Tag 2.49 freeware Powerful and comfortable tagger for MP3 files, with various links to online music resources, including Amazon - *****
Notepad ++ 5.9.x Open Source Excellent editor - much better than Window's Notepad - *****
Open Office 3.3.x Open Source Office package, alternative to Microsoft Office + ****
Paint.NET 3.5.x Open Source Advanced graphics file editor - ****
PeaZip 4.2 Open Source File compressing/decompressing program with nice interface. Includes 7-zip. - *****
PDF Creator 0.9.8 Open Source I was using "Jaws PDF Creator" since years. But for free applications, this one is perhaps currenly the best - ****
Quick View Plus 11.0.0 shareware File viewer for hundreds of different file types of all categories, including rather rare types - ****
Skype 5.5.x freeware Famous VoIP and chat program + *****
Stickies 7.1 freeware Sticky notes with many options, much better than the Microsoft version - *****
Total Commander 7.56 shareware File manager - alternative to Explorer - *****
True Crypt 7.1.x Open Source File and drive encryption + *****
VLC media player 1.1.x Open Source Very versatile media player + *****
Web-Recherche 3.1 shareware Unique tool to archive web pages - *****
WinDirStat 1.1.2.x Open Source Shows space used by files and directories, both as listing and graphically - *****
XnView 1.97.x freeware Graphics file viewer and simple editor (+) *****

Note: (+) means, that the OS X version is much more limited.

status: 22.12.2011

Back to Klaus Jacobi's homepage