Good FREE programs everyone should know about


Post good programs that you use regularly and think everyone should know about.

Some guidelines:
If you can't read this and follow along, then don't bother posting. I will delete your post for not following the guidelines.
  1. Only post free or open source programs, not free trials. There is one exception to this rule; a trial is acceptable if it's true shareware, meaning you you don't lose functionality after the trial period ends. An example of this would be mIRC.
  2. Include a link to the program and a brief description. Please try to use good descriptions.
  3. Try to keep conversation in this thread relevant to the topic, and any programs posted in it. If you get off topic I will delete your post.
That should be about it, lets make this a helpful thread. I'll be adding all the programs and descriptions to the wiki once this thread dies out.


Tray it!
TrayIt! allows to save precious Taskbar space for minimized windows. For each application which applies TrayIt! it creates a small icon in the System Tray. (System Tray area is located near the Clock). When application's window is minimized this icon represents the application on the Taskbar instead of the regular "minimized rectangle".

It is particularly useful for background tasks you typically keep running on your PC all day long like your favorite E-mail client, Real Player, etc.
Make a window roll into its title bar, send it to the back or make it stay on top. Minimize, maximize or close all visible windows, including minimizing to the tray area. Make a window translucent on Windows 2000 or above. WinRoll is lovingly hand-crafted in 100% pure assembly language to give the fastest response and the smallest memory footprint.
Stroke It
System wide mouse gestures for Windows.
PDF Speed Up
Speeds up loading PDF files in Adobe reader. This will keep your browser from crashing when opening a PDF file.
Foobar 2000
By far my favorite audio player for Windows. It's highly customizable, more stable than Winamp, takes up hardly any memory at all and supports almost all common audio formats by default.
Foobar2000 is an advanced audio player for the Windows platform. Some of the basic features include ReplayGain support, low memory footprint and native support for several popular audio formats.
Here's a screenshot of my setup:

Miranda IM
Miranda IM is a multi protocol instant messenger client.No bloat, it's Easy and Small! Miranda IM is designed to be resource efficient and easy to use. It uses very little memory and requires no installation. Just unzip and run! This also makes it ideal for users that want to run their messenger client from a removable storage such as an USB memory stick. It can even be stored on a floppy disc if not too many plugins are used. Supports ICQ, AIM, MSN, Jabber, Yahoo, Gadu-Gadu, Tlen, Netsend and other protocols.
Restore files which are deleted from the recycle bin or deleted while holding down the Shift key by mistake.
Conversely, this program has another function that makes it almost impossible to restore all deleted files.
You can use it after deletion of confidential documents, embarrassing files and so on.
Sequoia View
Ever wondered why your hard disk is full? Or what directory is taking up most of the space? When using conventional disk browsing tools, such as Windows Explorer, these questions may be hard to answer. With SequoiaView however, they can be answered almost immediately. SequoiaView uses a visualization technique called cushion treemaps to provide you with a single picture of the entire contents of your hard drive. You can use it to locate those large files that you haven't accessed in one year, or to quickly locate the largest picture files on your drive. The screenshots below give a first impression of the original cushion treemaps:

That's all I can think of for now, I'll try to come up with some more later.


Angel of Death
AVG Virus Protection Program ~This prog found bugs that Nortons missed. I have uesed it and have since limited a lot of the problems i was having on my computer. It simple and easy to use and affordable since it is free.

FreeZip I happen to like this better then winzip :)


Hella Constipated
WinRAR -

Compressor/Decompressor for RAR/ZIP/LZH/Tarball/ACE/SIT/Everything else under the sun

Descent Manager Tools - Perfect for Red Faction and FreeSpace 1/2 file extraction/modding -

(Currently Descent Network is down)

WinAmp -

I've been using it since Version 2, but Version 3 sucked. The new Version 5 however, rocks.

ZDaemon -

Play Doom 1/2 Online - FOR FREE! No Doom files needed; it has a "GETWAD" utility that automatically gets the files you need from the Interwebnetz.

DoomsDay Engine/JDoom/JHexen/JHeretic

The premier single player Win32 Doom experience. OpenGL and Direct3D 8 accelerated, new effects such as colored lighting (That was the cat's ass back in the old Quake II days!), translucency, dynamic lighting, and 3D enemies can be enabled - or disabled, for the 0ld sch00l experience.


gettare il sangue
Junglizm: Hi, thanks for not reading. That comment has now been removed.

P.S. Norton's definitions and heuristics suck.


avast will delete your viruses on contact, and has many features for your little deely-bobs on your computer.

if u want a more detailed explanation click this

assuming the rest of you know about Spybot, Ad-aware, etc. i will show you the E-PROMPTER

with the e-prompter, you can check on all of your email accounts simultaneously.

thanks for the other programs i will give them a whirl. :thumbsup:


7 Zip
Replacement for Winzip and Winrar.

Mozilla Thunderbird
Exponentially better than Outlook Express, and more secure.
Thunderbird makes emailing safer, faster, and easier than ever before with the industry's best implementations of features such as intelligent spam filters, built-in RSS reader, quick search, and much more.
FileZilla is a fast and reliable FTP client and server with lots of useful features and an intuitive interface.

The programs below probably aren't for everyone, but I get a lot of use out of them.

Debian Linux
It's Linux, what more can I say. It's one of the more mature and robust distros out there, and has an awesome portage system. :thumbsup:

Open BSD
In my opinion, the best OS choice for any server.
Only one remote hole in the default install, in more than 8 years!

The OpenBSD project produces a FREE, multi-platform 4.4BSD-based UNIX-like operating system. Our efforts emphasize portability, standardization, correctness, proactive security and integrated cryptography. OpenBSD supports binary emulation of most programs from SVR4 (Solaris), FreeBSD, Linux, BSD/OS, SunOS and HP-UX.
For when you have to use Windows, but want Linux functionality.
# Cygwin is a Linux-like environment for Windows. It consists of two parts: A DLL (cygwin1.dll) which acts as a Linux API emulation layer providing substantial Linux API functionality.
# A collection of tools, which provide Linux look and feel.
wget for Windows
A Windows port of GNU wget, which is a very useful command line download manager. Never trust your browser with huge downloads!

For people who are scared of the command line.
WackGet is a download manager for Windows. It maintains a queue of files and downloads them (using wget) in the order you specify.
Xchat SilverX
XChat is an IRC (chat) program for Windows and UNIX (Linux/BSD) operating systems. I.R.C. is Internet Relay Chat, see for more information about IRC in general.
Putty SSH
PuTTY is a free implementation of Telnet and SSH for Win32 and Unix platforms, along with an xterm terminal emulator.
Portable Firefox
A slimmed down, albeit fully functional, version of Firefox 1.0.2 that can run from a USB flash drive.

Extensions Mirror
THE best place for finding Firefox extensions. They always have the most up to date versions.

Active Python

Active State's interpreter/IDE for my favorite scripting language; Python!

ConTEXT is a small, fast and powerful text editor, developed mainly to serve as secondary tool for software developers. After years and years searching for suitable Windows text editor, I haven't found any of them to completely satisfy my needs, so I wrote my own.


Banned - What an Asshat!
I would like to see some free kids programs that can be downloaded and installed in a non-internet based computer, because my kids are not allowed internet. Thanks.


What Apple ripped off to be the basis of their OS-X Widgets.
Konfabulator is a JavaScript runtime engine for Windows and Mac OS X that lets you run little files called Widgets that can do pretty much whatever you want them to. Widgets can be alarm clocks, calculators, can tell you your WiFi signal strength, will fetch the latest stock quotes for your preferred symbols, and even give your current local weather.

What sets Konfabulator apart from other scripting applications is that it takes full advantage of today's advanced graphics. This allows Widgets to blend fluidly into your desktop without the constraints of traditional window borders. Toss in some sliding and fading, and these little guys are right at home in Windows XP and Mac OS X.


Funnier than a 5th grader

DVD Decrypter is a highly versatile VOB-ripping utility. The software takes advantage of both the DeCSS Plus and VobDec algorithms for looking up and decrypting the CSS encryption. DVD Decrypter is also multi-angle aware, and capable of removing the Macrovision scrambling key, as well as the region code during the ripping process.

The link above takes you to a site that you can download the program from. Sorry, I was unable to find their official site.

This is a nice guide for DVDDecrypter. DVDDecrypter Guide


DVD Shrink is a versatile freeware tool for fitting a DVD-Video disc on a single DVD-R.

DVD Shrink is capable of both re-authoring and re-encoding the movie. It features an intuitive user interface which makes it easy to choose what to keep, and what to lose.

DVD Shrinks allow the user to select compression level for each video track separately to obtain the desired disc size (which is usually below 4.38GB). It has a built-in decrypter, so there is no need to rip the DVD files on HDD first. The software is capable of producing either an ISO image of the ripped DVD, or a VIDEO_TS folder for further processing, viewing or burning.


µTorrent is an efficient and feature rich BitTorrent client for Windows sporting a very small footprint. It was designed to use as little cpu, memory and space as possible while offering all the functionality expected from advanced clients.
Arctic Torrent
A minimal BitTorrent client. It wont have all the pretty features that other Torrent apps have, but focuses on low memory and cpu usage. Because it was written in C++, you dont get the high memory requirements of Java or high CPU usage of Python.
Paint.NET is image and photo manipulation software designed to be used on computers that run Windows 2000, XP, or Server 2003. It started development at Washington State University as an undergraduate senior design project mentored by Microsoft, and is currently being maintained by some of the alumni that originally worked on it. It is meant to be a free replacement for the MS Paint software that comes with the Windows operating system. The programming languages used to create Paint.NET is C#. Some C++ is used for extending the Windows shell to present thumbnails for our native file format.

Paint.NET has many of the powerful features that expensive commercial applications have, including the ability to use layers. We welcome any suggestions, and provide the source code for final releases under the MIT License. Please explore this website, download the software and try out many of the things you would do on those other expensive or complicated applications.
It's pretty nice for editing files quickly, but suffers from .NET lag (written in C#) after extended or heavy use.

VideoLAN Player
VLC (initially VideoLAN Client) is a highly portable multimedia player for various audio and video formats (MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, DivX, mp3, ogg, ...) as well as DVDs, VCDs, and various streaming protocols. It can also be used as a server to stream in unicast or multicast in IPv4 or IPv6 on a high-bandwidth network.
MediaPlayer Classic / Quicktime Alternative
My video player of choice
Media Player Classic is an extremely light-weight media player for Windows. It looks just like the good-old Media Player v6.4, but has lots of nice extra features. MPC has, for instance, a built in DVD player with real-time zoom, support for AVI subtitles, QuickTime and RealVideo support (requires QT and/or Real player), and lots more. Definitely a great replacement for the huge and clumsy Microsoft Media Players.
GrabIt, one of the easiest binary Usenet downloader in the world. With GrabIt you can search and download MP3 files, pictures, movies, software, games and more on USENET news servers, without downloading gigabytes if headers. The program features NZB file support, automatic batch downloading of multiple binaries at once, advanced error checking, filter options, multiple server support and more. You can also choose to save the downloaded files with a custom prefix and resume broken downloads. It can even shut down your computer for you when all downloads are completed. All features are controlled from an easy and intuitive interface.
For those not comfortable with wget or command line applications.
HTTrack is a free (GPL, libre/free software) and easy-to-use offline browser utility.

It allows you to download a World Wide Web site from the Internet to a local directory, building recursively all directories, getting HTML, images, and other files from the server to your computer. HTTrack arranges the original site's relative link-structure. Simply open a page of the "mirrored" website in your browser, and you can browse the site from link to link, as if you were viewing it online. HTTrack can also update an existing mirrored site, and resume interrupted downloads. HTTrack is fully configurable, and has an integrated help system.

WinHTTrack is the Windows 9x/NT/2000/XP release of HTTrack, and WebHTTrack the Linux/Unix/BSD relea
SpiderZilla is intended to be a Netscape/Mozilla/Firebird extension for offline browsing. Basically, it is only a front-end for the opensource command line program HTTrack Website Copier . "It allows you to download a World Wide website from the Internet to a local directory,building recursively all structures, getting html, images, and other files from the server to your computer. Links are rebuiltrelatively so that you can freely browse to the local site (works with any browser). You can mirror several sites together so that you can jump from one to another. You can, also, update an existing mirror site, or resume an interrupted download"- HTTrack description . Run SpiderZilla by Tools > "Download this site"
SciTE is a SCIntilla based Text Editor. Originally built to demonstrate Scintilla, it has grown to be a generally useful editor with facilities for building and running programs. It is best used for jobs with simple configurations - I use it for building test and demonstration programs as well as SciTE and Scintilla, themselves.
WinTeX XP is your TeX* / LaTeX* editor with MS Office look and feel. It combines the strengths of TeX* with the usability of Word.

WinTeX is especially optimized for using it together with MikTeX but can also be used as a shell with any other LaTeX software (see CTAN LaTeX software for other TeX compilers and packages).
EverNote Corporation's mission is to give users the ability to instantly create, organize and find any notes or content - and to make this information accessible at any time, in any place.

Built on a new metaphor for note management, our flagship product, EverNote 1.0, provides a single place where users can easily record, categorize and instantly find any type of content, including Web clips, images, emails, text and handwritten notes.
TiddlyWiki / GTD TiddlyWiki
Simple, Ruby-based, client side Wikis for use as a personal notebook. They come with the server required to run the application. GTD is a modification of the former.
Welcome to TiddlyWiki, an experimental MicroContent WikiWikiWeb built by JeremyRuston. It's written in HTML, CSS and JavaScript to run on any modern browser without needing any ServerSide logic. It allows anyone to create personal SelfContained hypertext documents that can be posted to any WebServer, sent by email or kept on a USB thumb drive to make a WikiOnAStick. This is revision 1.2.35 of TiddlyWiki, and is published under an OpenSourceLicense.



An awesome Unix/Windows audio editor, good for complex editing, or just a quick task. It also converts mp3/WAV/Ogg/aup on the fly. Compact size and interface, but still filled with filters and editig features. :thumbsup:


Both of these are programs to automatically find, par check and unrar Usenet downloads.

What I use; it's simple and works pretty well.

An application created to automate the testing of usenet downloads which have PAR2 verification filesets available. It can also extract RAR files if instructed to do so.


Man. Nature. Technology.

Ethereal is a FREE network traffic analyzer/packet sniffer. It requires WinPcap packet capture library before it will run. Link for Pcap is on Ethereal website; Download and install WinPcap first if you're running Windoze, then run and install Ethereal.
takes a little brainpower to interpret results; most of you losers are on your own, there.

have fun. :D


stomping through the forest like a tiny dinosaurus
Jung, how did you get your foobar that way with the picture and all? I have foobar please tell? :happysad:


Stardust said:
Jung, how did you get your foobar that way with the picture and all? I have foobar please tell? :happysad:
With some plug-ins. In the image I'm using quite a few, but they all depend on foo_ui_columns so install that first. The album art panel is foo_uie_albumart, the album list is foo_uie_albumlist and the formatting string I'm using is olight. Another one you might be interested in foo_uie_volume. You can find everything you need here - the plug-ins go in your Foobar directory in the components folder.

There are other plug-ins in that directory but they all require custom formatting strings to work. I do have the necessary code there as well, if you know where it goes.

Das Ami


The most full-featured Internet power tool on the market, Opera includes pop-up blocking, tabbed browsing, integrated searches, and advanced functions like Opera's groundbreaking E-mail program, RSS Newsfeeds and IRC chat. And because we know that our users have different needs, you can customize the look and content of your Opera browser with a few clicks of the mouse.

It also has a better security system than Firefox. ;)
(Blocks any XSS / Browser Hijacking scripts)

Arton alpha

sword wielding maniac
maxthon a good IE (based on IE) substitue, tabbed browsing, popup and spyware block lots of plugins including a form of ad blocking websites read it as IE but it has none of the security holes, works well for sites that don't support firefox it also tells you how fast you are downloading a site, your Ip address (not sure why) and how much free memory your system has