Windows users often have a given set of software, which, despite possibly not being the best fitting for their systems, they have always used it and do not like to change. For a new computer, this might not be a problem, as it usually comes with enough resources to run the software smoothly, but for older computers, using lightweight applications will lead to a better performance.
So, why keep using this heavy software which take ages to load and supercharges your system? There are usually plenty of lightweight alternatives for bloated software, meaning that you just need to search for them. In this article I will talk about seven applications which can easily be replaced by lighter ones without compromising the functionality you are looking for.
Adobe Reader -> Sumatra PDF
Do not take me wrong: Adobe Reader is actually great, but it takes ages for the application to load and open files. With Sumatra PDF, files are opened in a blink of an eye. This small software has all the basic tools for PDF viewing which makes it perfect for anyone looking for a fast PDF Reader. However, if you need PDF editing tools, then Sumatra PDF is not the best fit. Check out other nice alternatives for Adobe Reader here on Make Tech Easier.
iTunes -> Jaangle
Ever since I found Jaangle a few years ago, I have always been puzzled about the reason why it did not get featured on those “best player” lists. Jaangle is a really lightweight player – it takes no more than 15MB of RAM when playing. I realiize it might not be visually attractive, but to me, it looks good and is 100 percent functional. Given that I have music on all the time, why would I want a heavy player like iTunes eating up all my resources in the background? For the moment, Jaangle’s developers have stopped producing updates, but updates are not needed anyway.
Internet Explorer -> Chrome / Firefox / Opera
I’m sure you saw this one coming. Internet Explorer had some improvements in the latest Windows versions, but it is still way far behind its competitors. Browsers like Chrome, Firefox or Opera are lighter, faster and more customizable, making them obvious choices over Microsoft’s browser.
Nero Burning ROM -> ImgBurn
This is 2014 – why would someone still be stuck with Nero anyway? Do not get me wrong, Nero Burning ROM was an incredible software when it came out, but that was seventeen years ago. Nero could not keep up with the competition, and right now there are several free and better alternatives. ImgBurn is one of them, giving you a simple and yet effective way of burning your CDs/DVDs.
Windows Media Player -> Daum PotPlayer
Windows Media Player is a nice player, but it has not been evolving so much in the past few years in order to be a true competitor for the video player market. Daum PotPlayer, on the other hand, covers a huge spectrum of formats, is fast and lightweight, supports subtitles without great efforts and has lots of keyboard shortcuts which make navigation way easier.
WinRAR / WinZip -> 7-Zip
WinRAR and WinZip were also two very useful tools when they first appeared, and their reign was steady for some years. However, they failed to keep the innovation coming. 7-Zip, though, is a small piece of software that supports several different compression types. Also, it is much faster than WinRAR and WinZip, making it the best compression tool available right now.
Windows Explorer -> TeraCopy
With this item, I am not suggesting that you ditch Windows Explorer for good – just the file copying and moving part. It works well for small and medium files, but bigger files are really painful to copy. TeraCopy is a tiny tool that replaces that part of Windows Explorer and is only activated when you copy or move a file (or multiple files). Not only does it make transfers faster, it also adds some handy features to file transferring – pause and resume transfers, error recovery, interactive file list, and shell integration among others.
What do you think about this list of replacements for Windows software? Let us know in the comments.