Installing or re-installing Windows is a tedious and time consuming task. Other than the time spent installing the OS, we still need to restore all our favorite and essential software. Personally, I have a list of utilities and software that I install after installing Windows. Keeping this list made my life easier as it allows me to install everything that is essential without me forgetting anything. I’ll list down all the software and settings that I install after installing Windows. I have also categorized them so that it’s easy for you to select which category is essential for you.
Home Accounting is the most essential task that I do on my computer. All the budget of my home is made on the computer. This ensures that I have a glimpse of every financial aspect of my income and expense. I used to create Microsoft Excel workbooks for this purpose but now I have discovered Personal Finances Free which is perfect for handling home accounts.
Backup And Recovery
Regular backup is very important aspect to look at because it makes sure that you have everything important at your disposal in case of any disaster or corruption. There are a number of backup softwares which perform the backup process differently.
I personally use Syncback Free edition to sync my primary hard drive with the backup hard drive. You can select the backup software according to your needs. Some good softwares include the following:
Although Windows provides a basic compression tool which can read, compress and un-compress zip files, it is not enough in today’s technology world where there are plenty of other compression formats around. While WinRAR is the best paid compression software, I like to have, free softwares like 7-Zip or Haozip which provide similar features for free.
Installing device drivers after installing Windows is an essential step. Although you can download and save all the device drivers for your computer and install the drivers one by one, there are software which can automate the driver backup and restoration/installation steps.
If you use the Internet, then there is a huge list of utilities that have to be installed ranging from browsers to instant messaging clients. Here are a few utilities that I install initially when I install Windows:
- Mozilla Firefox
- Google Chrome
- Windows Live Messenger
- Google Talk
- Yahoo Messenger
- Downthemall for Firefox
- Internet Download Accelerator Free
- Orbit Downloader
An Office suite is a must have in today’s world. Microsoft Office seems to be the obvious choice, provided you are willing to buy a premium for it. If you can’t afford it, you can select from a number of free Office suite which provide similar tools and features as Microsoft Office provides. The free Office suites include the following:
- OpenOffice (most popular alternative to Microsoft Office)
- Go-oo (based on OpenOffice with better support for Microsoft Office file formats)
- NeoOffice (Only for Mac)
- Softmaker Office (Free with limited functionality)
If you want an online Office suite then you can use Google Docs or Zoho.
Windows Media Player is installed by default in Windows. It is the primary audio and video player for me but I install K-Lite Mega Codec pack which extends the functionality of Windows Media Player. In addition to that, I like to use VLC player and Cyberlink PowerDVD as my secondary players.
Last but not least, security is most important if you use the Internet frequently on your computer. You need to have a proper Internet Security suite to save yourself from hackers and viruses. Internet Security Suite can protect the computer from viruses, hackers, spam, spyware and other threats from the Internet. Since Windows 7 comes with a very good basic firewall, I don’t like to over burden my computer with additional Firewall, so I prefer to install only an antivirus which is free and can also protect from spyware in addition to other viruses and malware. Spam is not what I need on my home email. I prefer Avast Antivirus or Avira Antivir as my Antiviruses to protect my computer. Microsoft Security Essential is another great choice.
What is your list of softwares which you install after installing Windows?