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My Favorite Free Computer Software Programs

Updated on May 29, 2012
Computer Programmer
Computer Programmer | Source

Just thought that I'd share some of my favorite software programs that have indispensable for me. So long as I am using the computer, whether in the office or at home, I would invariably install these programs on the computer. One way or another, they have made my life on the computer much faster, easier, and more efficient. And feel free to share your own favorite programs - if I find them useful, I'd list them here. is a suite of office applications similar to Microsoft Office that includes word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, graphics, databases and more. It is available in many languages, runs on most common operating systems, and can generally read and write to the file formats for other office application suites. It is open source and completely free for any use, personal or commercial.

GIMP is an acronym for GNU Image Manipulation Program. GIMP is a graphic editing program with many advanced features. Many of the common operating systems are supported. The program comes with support for many different types of graphic file formats. And the best thing about it is that it is free.

Gyula’s Navigator
I think many of you will remember a program called Norton Commander from the days of DOS. It was a file manager similar to Windows Explorer. But it opens with 2 windows and you can very easily copy, move, view or delete files from your keyboard. It was my file manager of choice over Windows Explorer.

Well, Gyula’s Navigator is a clone of Norton Commander. The “2 windows” view is still there, retaining the main advantage over Windows Explorer. There are also added features including a built-in file viewer for various graphic and document formats. It is free for personal and education use.

Programmer’s File Editor
This is a text editor a little like Window’s Notepad. But it has features that, in my opinion, ranks it head and shoulders better than Notepad. It is most useful if you are a programmer as you are able to open multiple windows on the same file and thus view different portions of a file. And when you edit the file in one window, the changes are automatically updated onto the other windows.

Even if you are not a programmer, this is a good substitute for Notepad. It features multiple windows, lots of configuration options, keyboard macros and lots of other features. It’s no longer in development and it’s free, so there will be no support. And don’t let the basic website put you off. But don’t worry, I have used the program to develop countless software programs for a good many years so I can vouch for its function and reliability.

Always On Top Maker
This is a tiny little program that will remain resident in memory once you run it. I would recommend that you put it in the Startup folder so that it will automatically run each time you start the computer. Its function is simple. It will make a window “always on top”, or make a window that is “always on top”, not “always on top”. You just need to press CTRL-ALT-T to activate the function.

I find it very useful when I need a small window to always stay on top, while I refer to it and work on my main document. It comes in useful too when you have a window that is always on top by default that you would rather not be. It’s free and the download is a mere 6k!

While it doesn't state on the website, this program can also run on Windows Vista, as cwarden has kindly tested it out on his machine.


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    • wandererh profile image

      David Lim 6 years ago from Singapore

      SopranoRocks - OpenOffice is really as good as Microsoft Office so there is no reason to get the paid version. I still have to get used to GIMP though as I usually have only basic graphic editing chores and Paint is just right for me. :)

    • SopranoRocks profile image

      SopranoRocks 6 years ago from Upper Peninsula, Michigan, USA

      I really needed the first one on my new computer - it doesn't have Office. GIMP is used a lot on Second Life (online computer game) to make objects and clothing for sale; downloaded it last year. Fun once you learn it!

    • wandererh profile image

      David Lim 7 years ago from Singapore

      frogyfish - Do download it and give it a trial run. I find it as good as other paid office suites. :)

    • frogyfish profile image

      frogyfish 7 years ago from Central United States of America

      A great helpful article. Thank you for the tips. I have heard of Open Office before and need to go try it. Thank you for sharing your knowledge!

    • wandererh profile image

      David Lim 7 years ago from Singapore

      cwarden - Thanks for the tip. I'd put it up. :)

    • cwarden profile image

      cwarden 7 years ago from USA

      I wanted to let you know that the software didn't list Windows Vista as an option, but I tried it anyways and it works like a charm! So for anyone with Vista that wants to install it - go ahead! Thanks again :o)

    • wandererh profile image

      David Lim 7 years ago from Singapore

      cwarden - That's a really tiny program and really useful sometimes. :)

    • cwarden profile image

      cwarden 7 years ago from USA

      This is great - Thanks so much! I am installing the Always On Top Maker right now - I really need this program and wasn't even aware there was such a thing!

    • wandererh profile image

      David Lim 7 years ago from Singapore

      That's very kind of you, Hello, hello,. :)

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 7 years ago from London, UK

      These are great programmes and thank for sharing them with us. I shall keep your hub for further references