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Freeware Rebooted

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The time has finally come to reboot the freeware thread!

After six years I think its safe to assume that many of us have changed our minds on the software that we consider to be the best. biggrin.gif

The old freeware thread can be found here:




In order to keep this thread useful I purpose a new posting method this time around. When recommending a program I suggest you do it in this format:


-Program name (bold)

-Link to program

-Short description of what the program does

-Reason you like above others/discussion of the program


This way we can keep the thread neat and tidy. I also ask that you try not to post the same programs as everyone else, if you see something in someone's list you can still post about it if you have something else to say about it, but there's not really any reason to have 50 people recommend firefox. It just makes more stuff for people to have to sift through for something new. Also remember that in order for you post not to be deleted the program must be FREE, VIRUS FREE, and USEFUL.


Of course, just like the first thread I will start off with what I use:



Windows Live Essentials(Windows Vista, Windows 7)


- http://explore.live....ntials?os=other

-A free suite of programs from microsoft that includes Windows live mail, photo gallery, and movie maker(among many others).

-The before listed three are the ones I use on a daily basis and I would argue that they are the best in class for the various tasks that they accomplish.

I use windows live mail to access my live mail(hotmail account) and it offers free pop3 access that synchs changes with the server so I get the same experience whether I use the client or the web page to check my mail. Movie maker is not the same thing you remember from windows xp, it actually works!tongue.gif I use this program to edit the HD videos I shoot with my Kodak ZI8 camera(1080P) and its very simple to use and manipulate videos so that you can get exactly what you want. Movie Maker is also great for creating photo slide shows to send to family members.(add music, transitions, ect).



More to come, this was just to get the ball rolling. Hopefully this thread will last another 6 years!

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AftenGUI - WAV To AC3 Encoder:

* Download: http://www.digital-d...e/AftenGUI.html

* Description: AftenGUI is a graphical user interface for Aften, the open source A/52 (AC3) encoder. A video encoding related tool. It very easily encodes PCM WAV audio to AC3 audio ("Dolby Digital") for use in Xvid, DivX, etc.

* Reason I Like It: It encodes very fast, and I prefer AC3 audio over MP3 in Xvid/DivX encodes I do of my favourite TV shows/movies, etc. Just make sure you use at the least 192 KBPS!



* Download: http://www.videohelp.../PX3_AC3_to_WAV

* Description: PX3'S AC3 to WAV is a real easy one click AC3 to WAV convertor. Also has built in normalization for low audio AC3.

* Reason I Like It: If needing to change the volume or do proper fades of a video's audio like TV shows, etc., you can output an AC3 to a PCM WAV which any wave editor such as Audacity Portable can then edit.



* Download: http://www.foobar2000.org/

* Description: Foobar2000 is an advanced freeware audio player for the Windows platform. Some of the basic features include full Unicode support, ReplayGain support and native support for several popular audio formats.

* Reason I Like It: It plays all of the audio formats I use with a no fuss interface, and doesn't use allot of resources. It can easily be expanded via plugins/components if needed.



* Download: http://www.mp3tag.de/

* Description: Mp3tag is a powerful and yet easy-to-use tool to edit metadata of common audio formats where it supports ID3v1, ID3v2.3, ID3v2.4, iTunes MP4, WMA, Vorbis Comments and APE Tags.

* Reason I Like It: It can edit and tag all of the audio formats I use quickly and easily. It can also download album art and embed it into the music files which can then be shown in playback software and hardware players.



* Download: http://tinyspell.numerit.com/

* Description: A small utility that allows you to easily and quickly check and correct the spelling in any Windows application.

* Reason I Like It: It's a small sized spelling checker which loads very fast to check a handful of words, and beats opening up Microsoft Word for a simple spell check.


Tomahawk PDF+ Freeware Version:

* Download: http://www.nativewin...e/tpdfplus.html

* Description: A free PDF creation tool which is similar in functionality to using Microsoft Word therefore you'll instantly know how to use it. Remember to also get the free spell checking dictionary add-on which is a separate download!

* Reason I Like It: Allows for very easily making PDF documents with full control over what's being done. Just make sure when attaching images in a PDF to only use lossless bitmap *.bmp since it will auto-convert them to a lossy format.

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Revo Uninstaller

Download: http://www.revouninstaller.com/revo_uninstaller_free_download.html

Revo Uninstaller helps you to uninstall software and remove unwanted programs installed on your computer easily! Even if you have problems uninstalling and cannot uninstall them from "Windows Add or Remove Programs" control panel applet.Revo Uninstaller is a much faster and more powerful alternative to "Windows Add or Remove Programs" applet! It has very powerful features to uninstall and remove programs.



Download: http://www.skype.com/intl/en-us/home

Skype is software for calling other people on their computers or phones. Download Skype and start calling for free all over the world. The calls have excellent sound quality and are highly secure with end-to-end encryption. You don't even need to configure your firewall or router or any other networking gear. Additionally it doesn't just work on Windows. Skype is also for Mac OS X, Linux and PDAs using Pocket PC, with a native look and feel for each platform. Talking, sending instant messages or even file transfers work between different platforms like a charm.



Download: http://www.utorrent.com/

?Torrent is a small and incredibly popular BitTorrent client. Most of the features present in other BitTorrent clients are present in ?Torrent, including bandwidth prioritization, scheduling, RSS auto-downloading and Mainline DHT (compatible with BitComet). Additionally, ?Torrent supports the Protocol Encryption joint specification (compatible with Azureus and above, BitComet 0.63 and above) and peer exchange.



Download: http://www.getpaint.net/

Paint.NET is an image and photo manipulation application. Every feature and user interface element was designed to be immediately intuitive and quickly learnable without assistance. In order to handle multiple images easily, Paint.NET uses a tabbed document interface. The tabs display a live thumbnail of the image instead of a text description. This makes navigation very simple and fast.





Download: http://notepad-plus-plus.org/

Notepad++ is a free source code editor and Notepad replacement that supports several languages. Running in the MS Windows environment, its use is governed by GPL License. Based on a powerful editing component Scintilla, Notepad++ is written in C++ and uses pure Win32 API and STL which ensures a higher execution speed and smaller program size. By optimizing as many routines as possible without losing user friendliness, Notepad++ is trying to reduce the world carbon dioxide emissions. When using less CPU power, the PC can throttle down and reduce power consumption, resulting in a greener environment.



Download: http://audacity.sourceforge.net/

Audacity is a free, easy-to-use audio editor and recorder for Windows, Mac OS X, GNU/Linux and other operating systems.



Download: http://www.digsby.com/

Digsby provides you with IM, email and Social networks in one easy to use application. Instant Messaging - Digsby is a multiprotocol IM client that lets you chat with all your friends on AIM, MSN, Yahoo, ICQ, Google Talk, and Jabber with one simple to manage buddy list. Email Notifications - Digsby is an email notification tool that alerts you of new email and lets you perform actions such as 'Delete' or 'Report Spam' with just one click. Social Networking - Digsby is a social networking tool that alerts you of events like new messages and gives you a live Newsfeed of what your friends are up to.


Daemon Tools Lite

Download: http://www.daemon-tools.cc/eng/downloads

With DAEMON Tools you can back up your physical CD/DVD/HD DVD/Blu-ray discs into "virtual discs" or so called "disc image" files, which run directly on your hard drive. You can also work with images created by other burning programs! DAEMON Tools supports variety of image types. Use CD/DVD image converter to have one format images in your Image Catalog!



Download: http://www.7-zip.org/

7-Zip is a file archiver with a high compression ratio.



Download: http://www.videolan.org/vlc/

VLC media player is a highly portable multimedia player for various audio and video formats as well as DVDs, VCDs, and various streaming protocols without external codec or program. It can also be used as a server to stream in unicast or multicast in IPv4 or IPv6 on a high-bandwidth network.

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O&O Defrag Free Edition




This is a reduced version compared to the Pro version, but for private purposes well.



Free Studio




With this free software you can convert video and audio files between different formats and to iPod, PSP, iPhone, BlackBerry and all popular mobile phones and devices; burn and rip DVDs and audio CDs; upload and download YouTube videos and music to your computer, iPod, PSP, iPhone and BlackBerry; perform basic editing of audio and video files as well as record videos and make snapshots.



Eusing Free Registry Cleaner 2.8.1




Platform: Windows 9x/Me/NT/2000/XP/2003/Vista/7


Eusing Free Registry Cleaner is a free registry repair software that allows you to safely clean and repair registry problems with a few simple mouse clicks. The Windows Registry is a crucial part of your PC's operation system.



PageDefrag v2.32 70 KB




Platform: Windows NT4/2000/XP/Server2003


Windows manages unfortunately not to create a one contiguous pagefile. This problem can be solved with that little program :D


PageDefrag uses advanced techniques to provide you what commercial defragmenters cannot: the ability for you to see how fragmented your paging files and Registry hives are, and to defragment them.

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Free Studio




With this free software you can convert video and audio files between different formats and to iPod, PSP, iPhone, BlackBerry and all popular mobile phones and devices; burn and rip DVDs and audio CDs; upload and download YouTube videos and music to your computer, iPod, PSP, iPhone and BlackBerry; perform basic editing of audio and video files as well as record videos and make snapshots.

Is what's written on the SnapFiles.com download page about it true or not?


SnapFiles.com quote (source: http://www.snapfiles...freestudio.html)

Caution: While this a a very good suite of free audio and video tools' date=' DVDVideoSoft is somewhat notorious for trying to sneak their sponsored browser toolbar onto your system. It will be offered to you each time you exit one of their tools, and you can only opt-out by closing the Window (without clicking Next).[/color']


Well evidently it is actually true, it's too sneaky for me to even bother trying, see the SnapFiles.com user reviews about it here: http://www.snapfiles...ree-studio.html

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Provides instant screen grabbing and image uploading.


This tool really speaks for itself. Don't know how i managed before stumbling across this little application. The time and effort it saves is amazing.

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I've really begun to like this (I think it is an Adobe Air program so Air might be required)


What is Sendoid?


Sendoid is an on-demand peer to peer transfer system. It makes transferring any size file between two people as simple as clicking a link!


Where do my files go?


Directly to the recipient. The peer link provided after selecting a file connects the recipient directly to your machine. Files never touch or pass through our servers.


Is Sendoid secure?


Sendoid offers security via a 128bit AES encryption algorithm, link obfuscation, and an optional user-set password at the end-point.


Always be cautious when transmitting highly sensitive data over a connection you do not control.


Are there size limits?


Sendoid's web interface limits total transfer size based on the resource availability of your local machine. This tends to be somewhere between 600MB and 1gb. Don't worry, we'll warn you if you try to send or receive a file that is too larg

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  • 2 weeks later...

Rot13 is an encrypter / decrypter. It is well described by Hazelnut as


... Rot13 is a Caesar-cypher encryption that replaces each English letter with the one 13 places forward or back along the alphabet. Microsoft uses this method to hide reg entries...

There is a little standalone ROT13 app that requires no installation HERE.

You can copy those gibberish registry entries & paste them in the open gui, and it will decrypt them.

Be careful. The registry is unforgiving.

Alan_B also found an online site that does that HERE.

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Classic Shell -> http://classicshell.sourceforge.net/

Description: Vista + 7 start menu replacement.

Reason liked: Classic Shell search does better than Windows search box. Run box launches the REAL run box. Start menu navigation is easier, & is very customizable.


Abiword -> http://www.filehippo.com/download_abiword/

Description: Multiple document editor

Reason liked: Can open word from Windows 95/98/ME/2000/XP/Vista/7. Even Windows word can't do that!


IMGBurn -> http://www.filehippo.com/download_imgburn/

Description: Create & burn disk images

Reason liked: Easy to create ISO or burn ISO images


InfraRecorder -> http://www.filehippo.com/download_infrarecorder_32/

Description: Burns CD/DVD data + audio + video disks

Reason liked: Very simple. Very small compared to Nero/Roxio, & just works great.


Rainlendar -> http://www.filehippo.com/download_rainlendar/

Description: Calendar with reminders

Reason liked: Small, cool way to remind yourself.


Unknown Devices -> http://www.halfdone.com/ukd/

Description: Gives hardware string to help users locate missing drivers to unknown devices

Reason liked: Makes finding drivers easier


Free File Sync -> http://www.freewarefiles.com/FreeFileSync_program_45264.html

Description: Sync drives

Reason liked: Makes it easier to find missing or identical files


KM Player -> http://www.filehippo.com/download_kmplayer/

Description: Play audio + Video

Reason liked: Plays many formats. Has WMP11 skins. Easy to loop sections of videos.


Free OCR -> http://www.freewarefiles.com/Free-OCR_program_34315.html

Description: Optical Character Recognition

Reason liked: Does what it says & is simple to use


Free Kapture -> http://www.freewarefiles.com/FreeKapture_program_32165.html

Description: Scanner controller

Reason liked: Easy, simple scanner control interface.


Win2Flash -> http://wintoflash.com/download/en/

Description: Create bootable flash drives

Reason liked: Can use flash drives to install Windows from


Picture 2 -> http://sites.google.com/site/neotechni/Home/programs (look for Picture2.zip)

Description: XP Image viewer clone

Reason liked: Supports Gif animations, mouse wheel actions, & works in Windows 7. Very simple to use.


Extract Now -> http://www.extractnow.com/

Description: Multi-archive extractor

Reason liked: Unzips all the formats I use, & gives every archive it's own folder to none of them get overwritten if they have the same name. Rar, zip, 7z, & more.


Unlocker -> http://www.filehippo.com/download_unlocker/

Description: Unlocks locked files

Reason liked: Can delete locked files, or files that Windows has trouble with.


Haihaisoft PDF -> http://www.haihaisoft.com/PDF_Reader_download.aspx

Description: Reads PDF files

Reason liked: Very small & good PDF reader that doesn't have ads


Hott Notes -> http://www.hottnotes.com/downloadFile.php?file=HottNotes4.1Setup.exe

Description: Desktop notes

Reason liked: Really cool looking notes that can do many things


Driver Magician Lite -> http://www.drivermagician.com/Lite.htm

Description: Backup drivers

Reason liked: Backup drivers before formatting a drive. Especially handy on older systems that no longer have drivers for download on the web.


Double Driver -> http://www.freewarefiles.com/Double-Driver_program_16074.html

Description: Backup Drivers

Reason liked: Use in addition to DML, because sometimes a driver backup program will miss a file & having 2 backups can save your hide.


Qlock World Clock -> http://www.qlock.com/download/ (download free version)

Description: Clocks for nearly any time zone or country on your desktop

Reason liked: Great if you talk to people in other countries, & need to know what time it is over there.


Easy Image Modifier -> http://www.inspire-soft.net/software/easy-image-modifier

Description: Easily modify your images

Reason liked: Makes modifying images really easy.


Easy Timer -> http://www.inspire-soft.net/software/easy-timer

Description: Timer

Reason liked: Really nice looking timer for whatever project you may need it for.


MP3 Quality Modifier -> http://www.inspire-soft.net/software/mp3-quality-modifier

Description: Change MP3 bitrate

Reason liked: So easy to use!


Screenshoter -> http://www.inspire-soft.net/software/screenshoter

Description: Screen Snapshot taker

Reason liked: Very easy, good features


Best Practice -> http://www.softpedia.com/get/Multimedia/Audio/Other-AUDIO-Tools/BestPractice.shtml

Description: Audio time stretcher

Reason liked: Easily strip vocals from music to practice. Karaoke, anyone?


Image Tuner -> http://www.freewarefiles.com/screenshot.php?programid=65164

Description: Batch resize, rename, convert, & watermark images

Reason liked: Makes working with large numbers of photos very easy


Types -> http://izt.name/soft/types/

Description: Manage program associations, icons, context menus

Reason liked: Another windows chore made easier!

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  • 4 weeks later...


New Link


"Peek" by Martin Lubich helps you view the contents of binary files. Its light and runs quick, doesn't gum up the registry, uninstalls from add/remove. Its about 12 kb zipped and about 26 kb extracted. The zip file contains information and installation instructions. Adds a right click option to the shell context menu. I've used it for several years, no problems.

It was mentioned in the old freeware forum, but the author now hosts a link on his own site, so this is updated. I like it because it is so easy. Just right click on a file and select Peek from the context menu and you can see what's in there.


Would be interested to see if it works with vista or win 7, only have xp here. Anyone want to check it?

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Maybe I did something wrong but it didn't even seem to install on my win7. When I went to uninstall it it said "not found" and prompted me to remove it from the list.


Thanks for trying. I just unstalled it and reinstalled it using the included instructions, and it worked OK.


Maybe some other kind soul will try it, but then again maybe it just isn't for anything after wxp. sad.gif


Edited 19 jan 2012:

There is some indication on Martin Lubich's site that he may try to dig out his old source code and rework PEEK to run on newer systems. No promises, but maybe.

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  • 3 weeks later...

PDF-XChange Viewer.




Author says:

"Those wishing to View/Modify or perform simple editing of PDF files on their Windows PC's now have a FREE alternative to the Adobe Reader! The PDF-XChange Viewer is smaller, faster and more feature rich than any other FREE PDF Reader/Viewer/Editor available. This version also allows users to try the extended functionality offered by the PDF-XChange Viewer 'PRO' in evaluation mode - for free. "


I have used it for about a year now, just for the typewriter function, which allows you to fill in the blanks in PDF forms and save the form.

It will open pdf files you encounter on the 'net.

Free at last from adobe reader. :)



- I just install it for each use under Powershadow, so its gone after restart. The forms created are saved to usb.

- Don't think (??) the free version expires, not sure because I have not yet permanently installed it.

- So I do not know what the long term effects would be but it works well the way I use it.

- I untick the option to install the live update feature and languages.

- Wants to install ask toolbar and reset your default search but you can uncheck that.


picture: th_XChange_Viewer_ASK.jpg

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PDF-XChange Viewer.


I prefer the Portable version which is unzipped in a partition I created for portable software.

I think it has the ability to be added to the context menu, but I keep my portables out of the registry.

I prefer to launch PDF-*** and then drag/drop my chosen file (of group of files) onto its window.


I updated in June 2010 and see no indication it will expire. It just keeps on working.

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I prefer the Portable version which is unzipped in a partition I created for portable software.

I think it has the ability to be added to the context menu, but I keep my portables out of the registry.

I prefer to launch PDF-*** and then drag/drop my chosen file (of group of files) onto its window.


I updated in June 2010 and see no indication it will expire. It just keeps on working.


Had never tried that. Works well, but some features are a bit less easy to use.


However since removing acrobat, I need a permanent replacement, something that will open a pdf encountered on the net and also serve as a default pdf viewer.


That typewriter feature is nice, but I'm not yet fully committed to PDF-XChange Viewer, soooo, any suggestions?

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A few years ago I clicked on a link which resulted in Firefox opening and displaying a PDF from a site in Australia.

That seized all Firefox attention - no other TABS could be used until the PDF was transferred - underwater snail mail would have been faster.


I no longer allow Firefox to open a PDF - any PDF gets downloaded whilst I visit other sites.

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I no longer allow Firefox to open a PDF - any PDF gets downloaded whilst I visit other sites.

That's what I've always did since ridding my system of Adobe Reader many years ago, plus it's much safer since you can malware scan the PDF before ever opening it.

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  • 2 months later...
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Inno Setup Unpacker Explorer



Website: http://innounp.sourceforge.net/

Download: http://sourceforge.n.../innounp/files/

Supports: Microsoft Windows 98 and newer




Inno Setup is a popular program for making software installations. Unfortunately, there is no official unpacker - the only method of getting the files out of the self-extracting executable is to run it. That's now been solved by Inno Setup Unpacker!




Inno Setup v2.0.8 through v5.4.2. So it will work with ancient versions released umpteen years ago to modern versions released recently.



Inno Setup Unpacker Explorer is the frontend/GUI for the backend CLI program Inno Setup Unpacker, if you don't like using CLI programs get the frontend/GUI.



How to setup and update:

  1. Download and Install Inno Setup Unpacker Explorer.
    Note that it does NOT create any files outside of the folder where its installed, and it does NOT create any registry settings.
  2. Download an UnRAR Inno Setup Unpacker into the folder where Inno Setup Unpacker Explorer is installed to update the backend CLI program from the outdated 2005 version to the most recent version.


There is one bug in Inno Setup Unpacker Explorer, and that is the "Settings" button in it does NOT function.



My Thoughts:

I've been looking for something like this for years, and have finally found it! This should really come in handy to help with determining if setup files (compiled by Inno Setup) that you download contain any extra stuff we don't need, such as; browsers, malware, toolbars, etc., since some antivirus software can't fully scan inside of Inno Setup installers.

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  • 2 months later...

Is what's written on the SnapFiles.com download page about it true or not?


SnapFiles.com quote (source: http://www.snapfiles...freestudio.html)



Well evidently it is actually true, it's too sneaky for me to even bother trying, see the SnapFiles.com user reviews about it here: http://www.snapfiles...ree-studio.html


This one was listed in Hazelnut's post about the 150 best freewares of 2011, here:


FWIW, I just installed the latest version of the suite, ver 5.3.3.

link: http://www.dvdvideos...eo-software.htm


Found out these things:

- It did offer to install toolbars while installing, but they can be unchecked.

- It is a huge installation, lots of changes & adds at least 6 BHOs

- It requires IMAPI_XP_SRV2003_x86,

- - It offers to download it, and I did but I didn't install it and the conversions still worked.

- - is IMAPI just for burning DVDs or something?

- It phones home at installation. (I just disconnected from the 'net first & let it happen.)

- It did not try to install anything each time I closed part or all of the app.

- It is a resource hog. (Seems like most video apps are??)

- it seems versatile, but slow. It converted lots of stuff to lots of other stuff. :P


I don't remember that ver 5.3.2, in the original link by Hazel, did that toolbar thing either.

But the same caution was given on the 150 Best page (near the bottom):


"... with so many tools and features there comes some catches as well ... it enforces user to install DVDFreeSoft toolbar in IE & Firefox each time after a conversion gets completed. However, you can click Exit button to prevent the plug-in installation. ..."


Maybe I am missing something, but the only negative thing I've seen is that it uses lots of CPU & RAM. Maybe they got their act together and stopped with the toolbar thing.

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System Explorer

link: http://systemexplorer.net/

Its a system viewer and manager, and, err, explorer.

Has a portable version and an installer, and a version which is for W2K.

It phones home at install. :(

I tried the portable version, works OK. The little "+" sign (in the top right corner of the first picture) opens up lots of options.

They have a pretty good database of file explanations, and it will connect from the portable app to get information.

Looks cool. Big plus, that is. :)


Picture 1: th_SystemExplorer1.jpg Picture 2 (looks cool): th_SystemExplorer2.jpg

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  • 5 months later...
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Paint.NET Effects


License: Freeware

Website: http://users.telenet...risvandermotten



Paint.NET Effects adds into Paint.NET many new useful effects.



* Drop Shadow.

* Duotones.

* Monochromes.

* Blurs.

* Color Accent.

* FadeEdge.

* Gradient.

* Gridlines.

* Object Align.



The features it offers are nice but I've noticed every now and then that it can cause Paint.NET to crash.

Edited by Andavari
Added Warning
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Greenfish Icon Editor Pro


License: Freeware

Download: http://www.snapfiles...iconeditor.html



Greenfish Icon Editor Pro (GFIE Pro) is a powerful icon, cursor, animation, icon library and image editor.



* Open and save in ICO, CUR, PNG, XPM, BMP and JPEG formats.

* Create icons up to 256x256 @ 32-bit.

* Create Vista compatible PNG compressed icons.

* Sophisticated selecting tools like marquee, lasso and magic wand, as in a professional photo editor.

* Create and test cursors.

* Extract icons and cursors from executable files.

* Dynamic color depth: you do not have to specify it explicitly, Greenfish Icon Editor will determine it for you.

* Drawing lots of kinds of gradients.

* Lots of filters including Hue shift, Remove matte and Drop shadow.

* Sample icons are included.


My Thoughts:

It's really a robust and good freeware icon editor, so much I'm dumping the old last freeware version of IcoFX in favour of Greenfish Icon Editor Pro.

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  • 4 weeks later...
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License: Freeware

Supported OSes: Microsoft Windows, and MAC

Website: http://www.implbits.com/









HashTab is a Windows shell extension that allows you to calculate file hashes directly from Windows Explorer. The program adds a new tab to the Properties dialog of each file, allowing you to quickly copy a hash value or compare it to verify file integrity.


HashTab supports a wide variety of hash algorithms, including; MD5, SHA1, SHA2, RipeMD, HAVAL and Whirlpool.


My Thoughts:

One of the best freeware file hashing/checksum tools I've ever used. HashTab will be replacing two other file hashing tools I have installed.

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