My Freeware Picks

This is my list of must-have, totally free Windows software:

  • allTunesfreeware – I use allTunes to download music via AllofMP3. It’s much easier than downloading them one by one, or using a tool like FlashGet.
  • Audacityopen source – A superb program for doing any audio editing. I like to use it to make ringtones for my phone.
  • CDexopen source – Used to rip audio CDs into MP3s on my computer. Sure, I could use Windows Media Player to rip tracks into WMAs, but I prefer the MP3 format ’cause I’m old skool.
  • FastStone Image Viewerfreeware – Simply the best for viewing pictures, bulk image renaming/converting, and removing red-eye from photos.
  • FileZillaopen source – The best FTP program I’ve ever used. Stable, easy, and fast.
  • Firefoxopen source – What can I say – I love open source, so of course I use Firefox. IE7 may have finally started to catch up with tabs and RSS now, but they’re still way behind when compared to the plethora of extensions that Firefox has available.
  • Firetunefreeware – Tweaks the default Firefox settings to run optimally based on your computer and internet connection.
  • Foxit Readerfreeware – Do you get annoyed by how long it takes Adobe Reader to open, just to read a PDF? I know I do, and that’s why I use Foxit – it’s like the Adobe program except way faster, and it lets you do things like type on forms, copy text, and more.
  • Media Player Classicopen source – Sometimes, I just wanna listen to one song, or watch one video. I don’t need the bulkiness of Windows Media Player for something so simple; instead, I use Media Player Classic. With the QuickTime Alternative and Real Alternative codecs installed, I can use Media Player Classic to view and listen to virtually any type of media without installing any other programs, ie QuickTime or Real Player.
  • Photofiltrefreeware – I do all of my photo editing with Photofiltre (aside from red-eye removal, which I can do with FastStone). Photofiltre’s great for cropping, resizing, tinting, coloring, and using effects to distort/change images, but it’s similar enough to MS Paint for beginners and pros alike. For advanced editing, I recommend the open source program GIMP.
  • Programmer’s Notepadopen source – Useful for programmers, obviously, but also a good all-around alternative to Notepad because of it’s tabbed browsing. Programmer’s Notepad features many syntax highlighting methods for tons of languages including C, VB, XML, CSS, Python, SQL, and others.
  • Windows Media Player 11for Windows – I never really liked Windows Media Player (save WMP ala Media Player Classic) until Windows Media Player 11 came out. Since then, it’s become the only music player I use (with one exception – read on). I love the ID3 tag lookup functionality, the ease of navigating through the sleek black interface, and the overall layout between the content and the playlist. My biggest gripe probably lies with the equalizer, which is kinda hard to find; other than that, WMP11 is teh r0×0r and I use it for all of my jukebox needs.
  • Yahoo! Messengerfreeware – It does everything I’d expect an IM program to do and more. Y! Messenger lets you share pictures, swap files, listen to internet radio, and (of course) IM your friends. Plus, Yahoo! has the best smileys, as you see here on my site.
  • Yahoo! Music Jukeboxfreeware – This is the slight exception to my almost exclusive use of Windows Media Player 11. I only use YMJ when listening to new tracks with my Yahoo! Unlimited subscription (which is great, by the way). The crappy thing about the newest YMJ is that they’ve taken away the equalizer – you have to pay for it now. Considering YMJ is just a Windows Media Player overlay, that’s pretty ridiculous, so I stick with WMP whenever possible.
  • Yahoo! Widgetsfreeware – Widgets are neat. The ones I use most are The Weather and System101. Check out widgets for yourself here.
  • ZipGeniusfreeware – Forget Winzip, 7zip, WinRAR, or whatever else you’re using for ZIP files – ZipGenius is where it’s at. (With two turntables and a microphone, no less.)