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Author Topic: fully free software utilities for biz use - discussion  (Read 34779 times)
Steven Avery
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« on: June 17, 2009, 07:33:49 AM »

Hi Folks,

============================================

List moved to:

http://www.donationcoder....m/index.php?topic=18955.0
fully-free software for biz - the lists !


==============================================

 Goal - freeware and donationware (and maybe some super-inexpensive-ware) utilities for a biz environment.  That can be installed and may be helpful to the network admin and many can stay for the users themselves.

 The DonationCoder programs may apply, we can discuss which ones and how that works in the thread.  I'll leave that to the experts.

  Here are a few that immediately come to mind. I am especially interested in programs that :
 1) Might be picked up for use by the users, or
 2) Will help the network admin when he works on the puter

 ** = added to original post from thread info ... naahh .. too many, taken out.

================================

 Please do not get too concern where you post, although in a light sense now this one is meant more for the free-wheeling discussion, the new one is the reasonably orderly list and new suggestions.

Shalom,
Steven
« Last Edit: June 28, 2009, 02:46:26 PM by Steven Avery » Logged
tomos
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« Reply #1 on: June 17, 2009, 08:42:01 AM »

See Any freeware alternatives to Faststone MaxView? for an attempt to find free for work image viewer (no real success I think)

Might be considered veering very off-topic so I'll put these fonts in a spoiler

[edit] in my usual skim the post style I missed the 'utitities' in the title and first paragraph embarassed [/edit]
« Last Edit: June 18, 2009, 08:17:59 AM by tomos » Logged

Tom
tomos
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« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2009, 09:14:31 AM »

btw I forgot to say nice idea for a thread Steven Thmbsup

I also asked here before about a 'fully-free' Anti-Virus without success . .
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Tom
Steven Avery
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« Reply #3 on: June 17, 2009, 09:34:30 AM »

Hi Folks,

On Wilders we were discussing firewalls and three were said to have free versions for biz use. (I have not checked.)

Filseclab
PC Tools
Comodo  

The first two were of some interest to me (not Comodo) however PC Tools I think was bought by Symantec so its situation could easily change in the months ahead.

The anti-virus question is a good one, it is true that there might not be a good, free biz one of substance.  Then we could look for any that are both effective and quite inexpensive.  Might as well allow some other bases.  Similar questions with malware removal and HIPS (including startup managers).

=========================

Oh, this thread is not just for biz use, it can apply to multi-puter home usage.  Clearly the same ones that are ok for biz use are likely okay for your combo of family and test usage.  Although you might have more options, since the "non-commercial" use freeware programs may allow unlimited.  (And your preferred shareware may allow multi-home-and-laptop-puters.)At least you know the programs on this thread should be a good starting point of safety.  
That is the main point here, good programs that can be installed .. anywhere .. without $ and copyright and license and ethics backwash.  Secondarily, economic and effective programs in a biz environment (granted you have a whole nother realm there of centralized administration products available, but that is off this range).

Shalom,
Steven
« Last Edit: June 26, 2009, 05:57:11 AM by Steven Avery » Logged
Lashiec
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« Reply #4 on: June 17, 2009, 09:55:26 AM »

btw I forgot to say nice idea for a thread Steven Thmbsup

I also asked here before about a 'fully-free' Anti-Virus without success . .

I assume only ClamAV can be used everywhere. Not as full featured as avast! or AntiVir, but better than nothing.
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Steven Avery
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« Reply #5 on: June 17, 2009, 10:04:44 AM »

Hi Folks,

These two are definitely biz utility related.

WinDirStat (thanks Lashiec for the emphasis)
http://windirstat.info/
"WinDirStat is free software published under the GNU General Public License."

Free Disk Usage Analyzer
http://www.extensoft.com/?p=free_disk_analyzer
"We are so confident that you will love our products, we hope that you will buy the full Extensions package sooner or later, or simply get more use out of Windows and be more happy using it. So enjoy some our individual Extensions absolutely free."
http://www.extensoft.com/?p=home

These are two very fine disk space analyzers that seem to be fully freeware, this is a field were there may be some other goodies.

=======================================================

Extensoft has a couple of individual freeware products, so far that sounds like biz usage ok.
    * Video Converter
    * Screen Capturer
    * Disk Analyzer
    * Extended Task Manager

Video Converter is a specialty app, Screen Capturer I will add to the list above, and Extended Task Manager similarly I will mention above next to DTaskManager.

================================================

Tomos, thanks, I've been wondering about this for awhile, so today I figgered we could hash some of this out here.

Shalom,
Steven
« Last Edit: June 18, 2009, 10:02:20 AM by Steven Avery » Logged
40hz
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« Reply #6 on: June 17, 2009, 12:49:34 PM »

I'd like to put in a a good word for PuTTY. (www.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~sgtatham/putty/)

PuTTY is a very capable SSH/Telnet/Rlogin client for machines running under NIX or Win32.

If you're responsible for IT support, sometimes the only way to access a balky networked device is through the old (but very capable) SSH/Telnet protocol.



If the above screenshot means anything to you, you'll probably want to get a copy of this great app. PuTTY is free for personal and commercial use.

There is also a no-install portable version available for Windows users. Keep a copy handy on a USB key for those times when you're in a hurry; only have a low bandwidth connection; or some network device's GUI refuses to respond. Highly Recommended! thumbs up thumbs up

Portable PuTTY info & download link: http://portableapps.com/a...s/internet/putty_portable

Cool Tool!  Cool

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40hz
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« Reply #7 on: June 17, 2009, 01:05:20 PM »

@Steve-  Question: how are we defining "super inexpensive" in this thread?

Should it be by absolute dollars, or as a compared to competing products?

There are some excellent business and technical apps that aren't what many people would call cheap in the absolute sense. Many of them fall in the $50-$200 range. But they're often hundreds, and occasionally, thousands of dollars less than competing products. So in a relative sense they are. (Kinda like getting a Ferrari for the price of a Mini Cooper.)

I'm guessing these should be saved for a separate thread?

 smiley

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Steven Avery
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« Reply #8 on: June 17, 2009, 01:40:40 PM »

Hi Folks,

Naah.. share away on this thread.  We can congeal lists laters if we want.  Let cut-and-paste and a new HTML endeavor be our friend.  The idea here is mostly to assist anybody who has to think about working on 5-10-25 or more PCs. An emphasis on full-freebies but not to exclusion.

btw,  I am learning recently how some PC folks are simply very appreciative when you help clean up and check and give some new tools .. while others holla thru the roof !

Super-bargains go well with super-inexpensive, if there is some super-tool that costs $300 or more and helps for the whole group we might as well share it here, if it is gonna save multi-hours of time and make help good decisions.  I have been pretty surprised about the strength of some network tools, like ManageEngine Desktop Central which seems to be free for up to 10 PCs.  (It works on larger networks but you pick 10 to analyze .. something like that.) Then there are tools like LanSweeper and all these inventory tools.  NirSoft has one NetResView which is neat, shows all the permissions and such.

Throughout though we can also keep an eye on determining which utilities are really free free free, category by category .. e.g. if I was gonna put a fully-free startup program on 15 puters, what is available ?  Dunno, have to check.  That is good stuff to know, a real peace-of-mind when you know no boundaries are stretccchhed.

Shalom,
Steven
« Last Edit: June 17, 2009, 01:42:21 PM by Steven Avery » Logged
Steven Avery
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« Reply #9 on: June 17, 2009, 11:42:02 PM »

Hi Folks,

Programs: Freeware for Commercial Use - Genadij Trimailov
http://tridydotnet.blogsp...e-for-commercial-use.html

7-Zip (file compression utility)
Audacity (sound editor)
AVS DVD Player (dvd player)
CamStudio (screen recorder)
CD Burner XP Pro (cd/dvd burning utility)
ClCl (multiple clipboard management)
Comodo Firewall (firewall)
FreeLauchBar (quick launch replacement)
fSekrit (text encryption in a small exe file) >>
ImgBurn (iso image burning utility)
K-Lite Codec Pack(pack of video codecs)
Media Player Classic (a part of K-Lite Codec Pack)
Notepad++ (notepad replacement)
Paint .NET (image editor) Get Paint.NET!
Screenshot Pilot (screen capture utility)
SlowView (image viewer)
Traffic Meter (monitor the amount of traffic) >>
True Crypt (virtual encrypted hard drive)
UltraVNC (remote desktop control utility)
Virtual Clone Drive (virtual cd/dvd drive)

ImgBurn and CD Burner XP Pro are good to know. ClCl needs a spin, also SlowView (image viewer). Those are the ones that fit more into a general utility package, although the whole list is helpful.

Shalom,
Steven Avery
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MilesAhead
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« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2009, 12:08:01 AM »

You'll have to winnow these 2 lists as some freeware may not be free for business use, but there must be some in here.  The emphasis is on freeware that works on the particular OS, so there's quite a bit of overlap:

http://www.vistax64.com/s...-software-list-vista.html

http://www.sevenforums.co...programs-windows-7-a.html
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Steven Avery
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« Reply #11 on: June 18, 2009, 07:11:20 AM »

Hi Folks,

Fully free and excellent are the Piriform products.  In a biz environment CCleaner could be on every puter (it would be nice to disable the registry cleaner though if you are letting others use the program).  Defraggler I like (main issue for me in biz might be whether the super big PST files would ever be done without an overnight run and how to handle that).  Recuva is also available, although you might only install it "on demand". Although it might be handy to have it at the ready installed.

I'll add CCleaner  and Defraggler at time laters on the top post :-).  At this time they are category leaders for fully freeware.

From their forums.
"Yes ccleaner is free for both home and commercial use"

And you remember to untick the tool bar on install.  No trickery involved, simple to do and see.

JavaRa and PureRa added above, Q-Dir moved to top part of post.

Shalom,
Steven
« Last Edit: June 18, 2009, 09:20:18 AM by Steven Avery » Logged
rjbull
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« Reply #12 on: June 18, 2009, 08:34:02 AM »

TED Notepad - excellent Notepad-replacement editor with vast number of features
NoteTab Light - good tabbed interface multi-file editor with "clipbook" support, useful for boilerplate text, etc.
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Steven Avery
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« Reply #13 on: June 18, 2009, 09:51:35 AM »

Hi Folks,

Thanks, rjbull and 40hz, I'll plan on adding a notepad and remote access section to the top post later.

Cobian Backup
http://www.educ.umu.se/~cobian/cobianbackup.htm
"The program is freeware even for commercial use." - Luis Cobian in webforum

There probably will end up being three to five in the backup section that qualify, also the cloud backup possibility comes to play.

Added above, also the open source FileZilla added, there may be a couple of other fully free excellent FTP clients. Also Everything and Locate32 and Stickies and Smart Defrag and Revo Uninstaller and Keynote-NF added.

ZSoft Uninstaller not available in this way.
"I'm bound to the license agreement of Delphi 6 Personal which says that I can't use it for commercial purposes. I don't really know if that means that I can't allow others to use what I create commercially either, but to be on the safe side, I'm not going to..."

Personally to me it does not sound like allowing businesses to use the product is a commercial purpose for the developer, however the decision is his to make.

Shalom,
Steven
« Last Edit: June 18, 2009, 04:44:39 PM by Steven Avery » Logged
40hz
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« Reply #14 on: June 18, 2009, 05:17:16 PM »

If you need a free accounting package, look no further than to the folks over at Microsoft.
(Yes, I know. Try not to faint!  Grin)

Microsoft has a very capable small business accounting package called Microsoft® Office Accounting Express which is offered as a free download. ( www.ideawins.com/Default.aspx )

I was a little skeptical when I heard about this. I was wondering if it was extremely crippled like Intuit's Simple Start Free Edition of Quickbooks is. Much to my surprise, it wasn't. The Professional edition of Office Accounting does pack many additional features. But they're nothing that most small businesses would need.

Product version comparison link: www.ideawins.com/Compare.aspx

For once, I'm amazed at just how much $0 can get you from Microsoft.



 Cool
« Last Edit: June 18, 2009, 10:25:25 PM by 40hz » Logged

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« Reply #15 on: June 19, 2009, 06:09:05 AM »

For a small footprint & completely portable file search check out X-Find from Xteq. I use it for (all sorts of thing but mainly) searching server logs (that can be upwards of 1GB) for a specific entry or event and finding which .inc & .lib files have API X in them (They're not always documented that well).

It's ideal for field work where installing a typical desktop search app on a clients server is ill advised.
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PhilB66
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« Reply #16 on: June 19, 2009, 06:45:45 AM »

For a small footprint & completely portable file search check out X-Find from Xteq.

Writes settings to the registry at:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Xteq Systems\X-Find\1.0
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Xteq Systems\X-Find
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steeladept
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« Reply #17 on: June 19, 2009, 07:20:54 AM »

Great thread idea.  I know there are MANY out there in the freeware/Open Source world, but a couple that I use that can be very usable to end users are (in no particular order):

  • ScreenshotCaptor from right here at DC (though the end user must register here and download the key themselves - hope to bring in more DC'ers that way - before I will install it for them). It is nice because it can be set up to use without installation, but I don't tell the users that or they might try it without us tracking where it is - not that it is THAT BAD, but the company really feels the need to know ALL software on the PC's.
  • BGInfo - a great little utility from Systernals.
  • CD Burner XP - already mentioned, so I won't continue.
  • BIRT - An Open source BI software package not unlike Cognos Impromptu or Crystal Reports (though admittedly not quite as easy as Crystal Reports is)
  • IE New Window Maximizer - Just like it says, automatically maximizes IE windows.
  • PuTTY - Already mentioned, so I won't continue.
  • JKDefrag - It is licensed under GNU public license and is also portable.
  • TaskbarShuffle - Rearrange your taskbar buttons!
  • FolderSize - Figure out how big your folders are in explorer. From Source Forge.
  • SpaceMonger v1.4 - Similar to a visual version of FolderSize (well at the root level anyway).  Version 1.4 is still available from the archive area of the web site.  Version 2.x is commercial, and is $20-$25 (US currency) per seat.  While it is definitely worth supporting, that seems a little steep for what amounts to a visual disk sizer type niche product.  That said, I have yet to try version 2  embarassed.  Awaiting response from vendor to verify it is free for business use
  • Other obvious ones - software like Acrobat reader, flash, etc...  Okay, these probably shouldn't be here because they are so obvious, but since I was going through a quick inventory of business friendly freeware.... Wink

Whew, that was a lot more than I expected.  Hope that helps...
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Steven Avery
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« Reply #18 on: June 19, 2009, 10:14:24 AM »

Hi Folks,

Thanks, good refs.

# BGInfo  
# CD Burner XP  
# JKDefrag

And X-Find.

Added above with others in their categories. And yes, there are some cases where the "last freeware version" can be excellent here.  And I see that SpaceMonger 2.x has some network functions, so let us know about the 1.4 license when the reply comes.

I'm gonna check my notes on Auslogics "last freeware version" of their very pleasant defragger, and maybe skim down that excellent LFV site.  However in most cases we would have to find out the situation by research, reading the license with the install and/or writing the author (as with SpaceMonger).  Keep in mind that they really are likely bound by the license included with the software install although as a courtesy we would tend to defer to whatever is their current expressed view (they own the software, they could go to the effort to change the license).  Also in general we will favor current version, so an LFV alternative will have to have some real strong points.

And I'm already rethinking some of my daily usage, ready to pick up some of these programs that I have not been using.

Shalom,
Steven Avery
« Last Edit: June 19, 2009, 10:18:23 AM by Steven Avery » Logged
wraith808
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« Reply #19 on: June 19, 2009, 10:31:27 AM »

<snip />

Nice list... but no love for DC apps in there?
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Steven Avery
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« Reply #20 on: June 19, 2009, 10:37:18 AM »

Hi Folks,

The DC apps are coming.  I simply am less familiar with most, a few are a bit techie, some we have not yet done the category (e.g. Process Tamer, which is a definite).  Screenshot Captor I am putting in as we speak ! Also Clipboard Help+Spell .

So I was largely waiting for folks to write little blurbs :-). Blurbs that fit the context of the discussion and categories.

Also they may (like Nirsoft and Sysinternals) do best in their own special section, while a few of the most universally powerful and obvious are interspersed :-) .

Shalom,
Steven
« Last Edit: June 19, 2009, 10:43:38 AM by Steven Avery » Logged
steeladept
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« Reply #21 on: June 19, 2009, 10:42:12 AM »

Doh!  Totally forgot about Process Tamer.  It is so good I forget about it until I am missing it!   Kiss

That said, PT and SC are the two I use religiously. I try to use and like FARR, I really do, but I just don't ever seem to *need* it, so I don't use it enough to show it off for my users.

For personal use, I also use GridMove a lot lately.  Didn't really find a use for it until recently in my own workflow though.  Now...Let's just say it has saved me A LOT of aggravation.  Can't really say for business use that I would put it out there though - at least not yet.  I am only finding very specialized uses for it and those limit my knowledge of it beyond some rather basic uses.  Not that that would stop me from recommending it...
« Last Edit: June 19, 2009, 10:45:20 AM by steeladept » Logged
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« Reply #22 on: June 19, 2009, 11:38:48 AM »

For a small footprint & completely portable file search check out X-Find from Xteq.

Writes settings to the registry at:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Xteq Systems\X-Find\1.0
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Xteq Systems\X-Find

Which makes your point what exactly?
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« Reply #23 on: June 19, 2009, 11:57:05 AM »

For a small footprint & completely portable file search check out X-Find from Xteq.

Writes settings to the registry at:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Xteq Systems\X-Find\1.0
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Xteq Systems\X-Find

Which makes your point what exactly?

He may mean if it writes to the registry then it is not a completely portable application cause it leaves its footprints behind in the registry.
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Carroll - HamRadioUSA
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« Reply #24 on: June 19, 2009, 01:35:02 PM »

Hm... Seems a rather narrow misuse of the term (.ini fan?). I was speaking more to its ability to run on any MS OS without any bloated runtime requirement nonsense...along the lines of the original PE format specification (don't need stuff, just run). Storing window size/position info (neatly in a single key) in HKCU is hardly catastrophic.
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