travel postcards, practical advice, images and snippets of randomness

Software

Further down the page you will find links to software sites and in the main, free downloads.

I can’t recommend strongly enough the LibreOffice suite below, this is an open source product and is free to download and use. The suite comprises a word processor, spreadsheet, drawing, presentation and even an HTML editor.

I have been using this for many years now and it is being increasingly adopted by governments and city authorities wishing to break away from the stranglehold of charged for software.

If you buy a new PC, spend the money on the components and use the free software here to make it work.

Its easy to install and will be immediately familiar to you if you have used other office applications – spell checkers are available in several languages – download separately.

One stop shop for much of what appears below – very handy for when you have a new PC – Nitenite Easy PC Setup

Image manipulation and viewing

FastStone – The FastStone image viewer is a great tool for viewing your PC photos, but its much more than just a viewer; it can resize, crop, red eye fix and lots more – great application and free.
Of all the image editors listed here, this is the best one for the casual user who just needs to view and possibly make minor adjustments.
Make a donation if you like it – well worth the recommended $15 donation.

GIMP – Image manipulation software

Raw Therapee – RAW image processor – works well with JPEG too

IrfanView – Image manipulator

Pixlr – On line Image Editor

Inkscape – Vector graphics editor, if you need to ask you don’t need it…

Photomatix – for HDR creation/ manipulation

Video Compression – Compresses video files for web use

VideoLAN – will play almost any video file as well as other media

Office Tools

LibreOffice – fully featured Office software suite, highly recommended

PC Tools

AOMEI Partition Manager – PC companies sometimes deliver machines with the main disk partitioned, this can waste disk space and make the machine look full. This tool can combine partitions etc.

7 Zip – Zip and unzip tool

Syncovery – Synchronisation tool – ideal if you back up to external drives

Other Utilities

UKTV Proxy – watch UK TV whilst abroad, you will need a valid UK TV licence as well.

Torch Browser – facilitates downloads, based on Chrome

Winamp music player seems to have been left to die – which is sad because it was a great player and music library manager – I’m now using Foobar and if you want to rip CDs you will need a converter, get the LAME MP3 Encoder 3.99.5 here

Other Utilities – for Apple victims

If you are sick of iTunes with all its restrictions and syncing issues you could consider these alternatives (and they won’t erase your original files):

For CD Ripping try Freerip

For loading files to your Ipod etc try Podtrans

You may never go back…

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