There are plenty of user-interface enhancements for Windows, including tools to display useful information on the desktop background, automatically resize windows, mount network drives via ssh and write disk images, and each has its place – more on those in a later post.
To begin with, I present a list of what I would consider essential tools for a system running Windows 7 or Windows 8:
- Google Chrome – Google’s web browser is fast and has a clean and simple interface
- 7-zip – an archive utility able to handle ‘zip’ and ‘7z’ files as well as ‘tar’ and ‘gz’ format archives.
- Treesize – the free version of this utility can scan a disk to show how much space is used by each directory
- PuTTY – login via command line, network port forwarding and many other operations via telnet, SSH and serial
- Cyberduck – connect to FTP (File Transfer Protocol), SFTP (SSH Secure File Transfer), WebDAV (Web-based Distributed Authoring and Versioning), Amazon S3, Google Cloud Storage and Rackspace Cloud Files.
- Paint.Net – free image and photo editing software
- IrfanView – Simple image displaying application
- CCleaner – tool for cleaning your Windows PC
- Malware Bytes – free anti-malware software to detect and remove all traces of malware including worms, trojans, rootkits, rogues, dialers, spyware and more.
- Microsoft Security Essentials – Microsoft Security Essentials can help guard against viruses, spyware, and other malicious software.