Get yourself a new computer recently? Here’s what I recommend doing before you start using it:
Head on over to Ninite.com. This site lets you pick from popular free applications and gives you an installer that downloads and installs your selected programs without you having to do anything. The programs that I recommend are:
- Web Browsers: Chrome
Google Chrome is becoming a memory hog, but I can’t get myself to switch to Mozilla Firefox, as I keep having issues with it. If you’ve got more that 4 GB of RAM, you should be fine.
- Media: VLC and iTunes (only if you have an iPhone/iPod)
VLC is the only media player you’ll ever need (except for playing Blu-Rays).
- Runtimes: .NET, Silverlight (for Netflix), and Java (only if you need it)
Avoid Java if you can, as it has security vulnerabilities almost every month. At a bare minimum, disable it in your web browser.
- Documents: Foxit Reader
Foxit Reader is a fast, easy-to-use, and secure PDF viewer. The latest version will even let you create PDFs.
- Developer Tools: Notepad++
An outstanding text editor. I use it for coding and looking at all kinds of files. You may not need this one, but if you are a power user, you’ll want it.
- Other: Steam (assuming you’re a gamer)
- Utilities: TeamViewer (if I give you tech support) and Classic Start (only if you’re running Windows 8)
I use TeamViewer to remotely access my friends’ and family’s computers when they need tech support. If you’re one of these, then download it.
Classic Start brings the Start Button back to Windows 8.
- Compression: 7-Zip
While I am a die-hard WinRAR fan, this is the next best thing and is free.
I am currently loving BitDefender Free, which is light on resources and works very well. Download and install.