In this article, we share a list of useful software that will make your Windows experience more convenient.
The Windows operating system offers to the user a large set of features. If you need more, there are programs that can extend and enhance its features. For example, when you want to clean up your system, download a video or crop a photo, write a program or text quickly, or recover accidentally deleted files.
We have collected 19 programs that may be useful for any Windows user.
Browser: Google Chrome
This is the most popular program for the PC. After all, it is in the browser that we spend the most time working at the computer.
The leading position in this category of programs is Chrome. It has a number of advantages:
- Supports a huge number of useful extensions that complement the standard features of the browser: blocking ads, storing passwords, translating, downloading videos, and others.
- Cross-platform, it synchronizes user data between different devices.
In addition, the developers are promptly implementing support for all modern technologies. And that’s why it’s worth choosing Google Chrome as your browser.
Alternative: Firefox, Opera, Microsoft Edge.
Office suite: LibreOffice
If you work with presentations, spreadsheets, and word processing, you’ll need an office suite. As an alternative to Microsoft applications, you can use the Google suite of online services. But if you’re looking for a program that allows you to work in comfort without the internet, LibreOffice is worth a look.
LibreOffice is free for private, educational, or commercial use.
- LibreOffice Writer is a word-processing program and visual HTML editor.
- LibreOffice Calc is a spreadsheet program.
- LibreOffice Draw is a program for creating and editing vector graphics.
- LibreOffice Impress is a presentation preparation program.
- LibreOffice Base is a mechanism for connecting to external databases and an integrated database system HSQLDB.
- LibreOffice Math is a mathematical formula editor.
Alternative: Google services (“Documents”, “Tables”, “Presentations”).
Remote connectivity software: Teamviewer
Teamviewer is a remote access tool that allows you to connect to other computers. You can remotely access other computers and share files via Teamviewer. The software enables secure remote access to any device, regardless of platform, at any time and from any location. TeamViewer can be used to connect to computers, smartphones, and servers. With Teamviewer, you can collaborate online, participate in meetings, communicate with others, etc.
Screen capture tool: ShareX
ShareX is one of the best free screen capture tools. It offers users a variety of screen capture options. ShareX has a built-in image editor that you can use to edit screenshots. After taking a screenshot in ShareX, there are several options for further actions with the image:
- edit in the editor,
- add a watermark,
- copy to clipboard,
- save to file,
- upload to a server, etc.
Working with the application is easy and comfortable thanks to its intuitive interface.
File preview: QuickLook
QuickLook is similar to the Mac preview in its capabilities. If it is installed on a PC, the user can select the file they want without having to open its contents. QuickLook works with music and video, text, PDF and HTML files, ZIP archives, and many other formats. QuickLook is great for quick browsing, copying, or working with large files.
Alternative: Eye of GNOME
Text Editor: Notepad++
Notepad++ is a handy, open-source text editor. It supports marcdown markup and a large number of programming languages. This makes it great not only for journalists and copywriters but also considered to be one of the best tools for programmers.
Notepad++ is easy to use. That’s if you look at it as an advanced notepad that can handle multiple TXT files at once and save every change. At the same time, it’s a sophisticated and deep code editor with plugins and clear customization.
Alternative: Sublime Text.
Secure and confidential internet access: NordVPN
NordVPN gives you the ability to connect to over 5,000 fast VPN servers in 60 countries. This software does not track, collect or transmit data. You can enjoy a fast connection without buffering. NordVPN does not store session information, bandwidth used, IP addresses, traffic data or session details. Offers 24/7 product support.
Alternative: ExpressVPN, Surfshark VPN
Download software: uTorrent
This browser is not suitable for downloading large programs, videos, or other large files:
- The loading process can stop at any time.
- Have to start the download process all over again if you get disconnected;
- Slow download speeds.
There are applications that are fast at downloading files of any size and are not afraid of connection problems. A good example is uTorrent. It combines these features in one package:
- small size;
- high speed;
- a lot of features to customize your downloads.
It provides fast downloads by automatically adjusting the traffic parameters depending on your network and internet connection.
The only drawback is the ads that are built in.
Media player: VLC
Windows Media Player works with the basic formats, but may not be able to handle some videos. VLC media player is worth a try as an alternative.
VLC media is one of the best free media players. It is a simple but powerful player that supports nearly all major video and audio file formats, DVDs, Audio CDs, VCDs, as well as video streaming. Understands most codecs without additional packages – MPEG-2, MPEG-4, H.264, MKV, WebM, WMV, MP3. Completely free – no spyware, no ads, and no user tracking.
Alternative: GOM Player.
Music player: MusicBee
Users use the most popular audio players to listen to music tracks on their computers. Usually, you only need to choose a player that supports the main file formats and has a user-friendly interface.
For such purposes, we recommend MusicBee – a beautiful and simple, yet fast and feature-rich music player. The program runs quickly and does not load the system. MusicBee can play podcasts and web radio, import tracks from iTunes, and synchronize music between devices. Equipped with a powerful equalizer and plugins for new features.
Graphic Editor: GIMP
A graphics editor is an indispensable tool for working with images. For professionals, there are Photoshop and similar programs. But for the tasks of the common user, it is perfect for GIMP. It has essentially fewer features than professional applications, but it doesn’t require a very powerful computer.
GIMP works with the most common image formats. This quick and easy-to-use editor can crop, resize, retouch and make changes to your image.
Cloud Drive: Dropbox
Storing useful information in the cloud has become an everyday occurrence. Dropbox offers an app for all major devices (Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android), so you can take your files anywhere and work with them on computers with any OS. You have 2GB of free storage at your disposal.
With Dropbox, you can keep important files safe in one place with shared access. Back up your files in the cloud, share your photos, videos, etc.
This cloud has Paper built in, which allows you to work with your documents right inside Dropbox. You can also connect Trello, Slack, Zoom, Canva, and many other third-party services to the drive for project management as well as teamwork.
The free space that Dropbox provides can be expanded: for each friend you invite who installs the app on their computer, you get a bonus of 500 MB.
Alternative: OneDrive, Google Drive, pCloud
PDF reading and editing tool: Foxit Reader
Open a PDF file for reading in any modern browser. If you do not only want to view the document but also edit it – make marks, add comments, or convert it to another format – you need a special PDF editor. For example Foxit Reader. This is free software for reading digital documents in PDF format.
Foxit Reader is a feature-rich program:
- with a wide range of features;
- high start-up speed;
- friendly and intuitive user interface;
- ability to copy formatted text.
Alternative: Sumatra PDF.
OS cleaner: CCleaner
Using a computer is accompanied by an accumulation of “junk” in the system. This affects its performance: speed is reduced and errors occur. If you frequently download software or useless files from the internet, your storage space can fill up pretty quickly. If this happens, you should use CCleaner, an operating system cleaning software.
CCleaner is an all-in-one, simple and effective operating system cleaner. It frees up space on your hard drive, removes temporary files from your browser and other programs, and also cleans up your Windows registry. CCleaner works semi-automatically and does not require long setup times.
CCleaner is one of the best programs for cleaning your computer from junk, temporary files, cache files, and other unused files.
Alternatives: BleachBit, Advanced PC Cleanup
Uninstaller: iObit Uninstaller Free
The standard way of uninstalling software is not always effective. Uninstalling some applications may leave their files on your computer, or some utilities may refuse to leave the hard disk at all. For this reason, there are special utilities that erase programs without leaving any residue behind.
One of the best uninstallers is iObit Uninstaller Free. It quickly scans your system for installed programs and allows you to remove unwanted software, including browser extensions. Allows batch uninstallation of applications.
It is free, but sometimes displays ads.
Alternatives: Wise Program Uninstaller, Geek Uninstaller, Revo Uninstaller Free.
Adware cleaner: Malwarebytes AdwCleaner
There is a category of malware called Adware. When they get on your computer, they can open unwanted websites or display ad banners. Getting rid of them can be very difficult. Special programs are available to deal with them.
A good example is AdwCleaner from Malwarebytes. It has proven to be an easy and effective way to clean your PC of adware junk. Malwarebytes AdwCleaner uses innovative technology specifically designed to detect and destroy objects stealthily infiltrating your computer. Such a tool is always good to have on hand.
What tasks does this program perform?
- Removes adware and unwanted programs
- Removes unnecessary toolbars and preinstalled programs
- Checks your computer in seconds.
Uses very few RAM and CPU resources and requires no installation. Simply download the software file, open it and click the ‘Scan’ button. It’s very simple.
Alternatives: Avast Free Antivirus, TotalAV Antivirus
Disk Space Analyzer: TreeSize Free
If you’re running out of disk space, TreeSize Free can tell you which files are taking up the most space. It lists all of your folders and documents, sorting by size. So you can use TreeSize Free to free up space quickly.
Alternatives: WizTree, WinDirStat
Password manager: Bitwarden
Bitwarden is the most robust open-source password management application available. The application is available for both desktop and mobile operating systems. With Bitwarden you can generate strong passwords for each account and the app can remember them all.
Bitwarden locks all your passwords with one master password. It is the only one you need to remember.
Alternative: Dashlane, KeePass
Data recovery tool: Recuva
What to do if you have accidentally deleted an important file? Data recovery tools come in handy when you need them. Recuva can help. Recuva allows you to quickly restore deleted files from flash drives, memory cards, hard drives with Windows-compatible file systems (FAT32, NTFS), and other storage devices.
The utility scans the selected area and displays the results, including the path, name, file type, and expected recovery forecast. Thanks to the simple menu, you can quickly get to grips with the interface.
The program is available in a paid and a free version.
Alternative: Puran File Recovery, PhotoRec 7.
Is it dangerous to install a third-party program in Windows?
Some programs can damage your operating system. They may hide viruses or bugs. There are some third-party applications that do not have applications to uninstall. They may pose a threat to your system. Therefore, they should be ignored.
What precautions should you take when installing software on Windows?
- Only download the program from a reputable website.
- Check whether your computer has enough memory or not.
- Check the removal options before installing them.
- Read reviews of the software on the internet or consult an expert.
We’ve tried to put together this list with a variety of needs in mind to boost your computer’s performance, get creative, make your everyday tasks easier, and increase your computer’s efficiency. Choose software that’s right for you! And be aware of safety rules when installing software on your computer.