5 free programs for your PC

Everyone loves a free program; I know I do. Free software’s fun, but just because it’s free doesn’t mean it’s not useful as well. Just think about Firefox or AVG; they’re just as capable as their commercial rivals and in many cases, better. Every few weeks I’ll be listing some of the best freeware on the web, but today I thought we’d start with some basics everyone will find useful. 😉

5) Pidgin
Developer: Pidgin Community
Pidgin is an IM client that can log into AIM, ICQ, MSN and Yahoo simultaneously, allowing users to chat to friends on different networks without having multiple windows open. It fully supports file transfer and away status between networks and is similar to the better-known Trillian, but with better functionality.

4) DeleteOnClick
Developer: 2BrightSparks
When you delete a file in Trash, you don’t actually erase the file from your computer; it just allows the data to be overwritten. DeleteOnClick completely removes files in one click, rendering the data unrecoverable. It’s simple to use and highly recommended for people wanting to protect their credit card and security details.

3) Foxit Reader
Developer: Foxit Software
Foxit Reader is an alternative PDF reader. It’s a small file, launches quickly and doesn’t connect online without the users’ permission. It also has annotation tools and a text converter to convert a PDF into simple text.

2) OpenOffice
Developer: Sun Microsystems
OpenOffice is an alternative office suite to Microsoft Office with much the same functionality and appearance. In release since 2001, it’s fully compatible with Microsoft file formats and is available across all major platforms. It features the key office applications (word processor, spreadsheet, presentation manager and drawing program) and is a great alternative for anyone looking to update their office software or wanting to try out other options.

1) Google Desktop
Developer: Google

Google Desktop lets you search your computer like you search the web. Search for email, files, music, photos and web history with just a few clicks. The Quick Search Box adds even more functionality; double-click ctrl and type just a few letters to find and launch anything you could want on your computer. You can also add Google Gadgets to customize your desktop, letting you see the latest weather, email, photos and news at a glance.

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2 thoughts on “5 free programs for your PC

  1. Open office is great. I have it on my Vista and Ubuntu partitions. I have KOffice on my Fedora partition, but I don’t like it very much. I refuse to pay the outrageous prices MS is charging for Office.

    I don’t know about the Windows version of Pigdin (I should look into it), but the Linux version also support the Jabber protocol which Google Talk uses.

    CJ: Pidgin for Windows certainly does cover Jabber. *hits head* How could I have forgotten Jabber? I think Pidgin does just about everything I’ve ever seen, bar Skype-compatibility… but maybe that’s asking too much. 😉

    I love OpenOffice as well. It means I can get away without having to buy MS Office; I just wait every 3 or 4 years to upgrade to a new computer which comes with it (or at least Word). I had heard it doesn’t run quite as well on Macs, but maybe that was before Intel.

  2. I’ve just converted from Trillian/Google Talk to Pigdin. So instead of 2 programs chewing up memory, I have one And I personally like Pigdin’s interface better than Trillian’s.

    Now if Pidgin could get Skype’s protocol into it… I”d be in IM heaven 🙂

    CJ: I agree, I much prefer Pidgin’s interface to Trillian’s… it just seems smoother. The only advantage Trillian really has now is the SkyLlian plugin for Skype. Ah well, maybe one day there’ll be one for Pidgin too. Until then, we can dream! 😀

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