Saturday, October 22, 2011

Recommended Software

I'm often asked for software recommendations, so I've compiled them here for easy reference.  All of these are free software (in price, and some in licensing as well).

What is Free Software?
Philosophy of the Free Software movement
OpenSource.org
Creative Commons

Browsers:
Firefox
Google Chrome 
Opera (especially recommended if your laptop is tethered to a phone, as the Opera Turbo feature will reduce your data usage)

Recommended Browser Extensions:
Adblock Plus (with Malware and Tracking filters turned on)
Ghostery
HTTPS Everywhere

Office Suite:
LibreOffice - LibreOffice is a complete office suite (word processing, spreadsheet, presentations, etc.) produced using a free open source license.  LibreOffice is based on OpenOffice, the differences being that it has a faster development schedule and more advanced features.
Foxit PDF Reader - Views and creates PDF files, and also allows text editing of a PDF (handy for forms).

Video and Music Players:
VLC Video Player - Plays everything.  All codecs built-in.
TuneIn.com - TuneIn Radio. Anything you want to listen to is here.

Computer Security:
Set up Google DNS, install a free anti-virus for real-time scanning, and run the rest intermittently as on-demand backup security.  In Windows 8/10, the built-in Windows Defender anti-virus provides basic protection, for other versions install Microsoft Security Essentials for basic protection.  Alternately, Panda Free Antivirus is also very good.  A lot of security from viruses and malware simply involves using common sense when installing software and not blindly clicking on buttons on websites.

Google Public DNS
Malwarebytes Anti-Malware
Malwarebytes Anti-Exploit
Panda Free Antivirus
F-Secure Online Virus Scanner and Cleaner

Computer Privacy:
VeraCrypt - Encrypts your hard drive.
StartPage - Secure, privacy-enhanced Google search.
CyberGhostVPN - encrypt and anonymize your Internet connection.
Tor Browser Bundle - Makes your Internet traffic private and untraceable.
StickyPassword - Password manager.
LastPass - Online password manager.
Clipperz - Online anonymous password management.
GuerillaMail - provides disposable temporarily-valid e-mail addresses to avoid spam.
Signal Private Messenger - Encryption for your phone.

Computer Performance:
Classic Shell - restores the Start button to Windows 8.
Glary Utilities
CCleaner

Cloud Storage:
DropBox
Box.net
Google Drive
OneDrive