28 months ago
So I've noticed a lot of discussion about benchmarking software as a result of the new CPUs being released recently (I'm finishing up a build myself after a many year break from the hobby), and websites like https://ninite.com/ and others are starting to group a lot of the major programs together, but there's still a ton of good PC programs that aren't included, and I want to give a starting point for collecting some of those good programs.
What other (ex.: not on ninite or is already super popular) good programs do you use/recommend to others?
Even if your program is similar to another suggestion, still include it to give options. I'd expect most here to use Windows, so note if your recommendation is for Linux/iOS.
Skip most of the common benchmarking/monitoring software (ex.: prime95, Furmark, memtest86, the various CPU and GPU monitoring/OC programs, though I could make a list if there's interest) and hardware-specific software/drivers (ex.: NZXT CAM, Razer Synapse, CUE, etc.) since they're well known.
- Only recommend software you have used yourself, and following the forum rules, do not give shortened links. If any of this doesn't follow the forum rules, let me know.
- Try to link to the developer's main website unless there is no other option (ex.: not shady/questionable download sites/hosts).
For myself, on my boot drive:
A very powerful scripting tool within Windows for automation, key assignments, and a lot more.
CrystalDiskInfo and CrystalDiskMark: https://crystalmark.info/software/index-e.html
Already fairly well known, but they're good utilities to benchmark and monitor your drives.
A simple and effective extended clipboard, useful to recall previous clipboard entries.
On my secondary drive:
Pretty much everyone knows of it, but just in case.
Open Broadcast Studio (OBS): https://obsproject.com/
I'm surprised it's not on ninite yet since many use it, but OBS a very popular recording and streaming program.
I haven't used it that much yet, but it seems to be the main free video editing software out there (free version is limited to 720p).
Equalizer APO: https://sourceforge.net/projects/equalizerapo/ System-wide audio equalization; really useful for equalizing music from Youtube and others.
Color adaptation based on the time of day, useful for night-time blue light removal.
Creates a bootable USB installer, and is able to make multiple installers on one USB drive.
I haven't used it much since I mainly use AHK, but it's a simple keyboard shortcut program if you don't want to dive into AHK.
DesktopInfo151 (based on Conky for Linux): http://www.glenn.delahoy.com/software/
Was last updated in 2014, but I find it a really lightweight and straightforward panel to see your system at a glance.
I haven't had a big need to use it much, but it's a pretty well known fan controller software.
Just in case, one of the main free 3D modeling programs out there.
So, what do you use?
- Don't auto-update - the recent compromise of CCleaner is a good reminder to not auto-update applications, and only update when you need to.
- Only install what you need -
- If you have multiple drives, install the operating system and critical programs on one (SSD preferred), then anything else on the others. Example
- Create a system restore - I don't have much experience with Windows' restore function since I'm so used to just wiping the whole drive periodically on my old machines, but a less extreme and probably faster alternative to that is to create and save a system restore point - one system restore point right after loading Windows before loading other programs/drivers, and another right when you've installed your base applications and the system is running smoothly.
- Backup! Whether it's an SSD or HDD, drives do fail, whether from age or malfunction. There are a few online options to backup your data (Google Drive, Dropbox, OneDrive, etc.), and with a backup program like Synkron or similar, you can automate the process to save your files automatically.
- SSD management is different from HDD management - SSDs do not need to be defragmented
- Smaller specific programs vs. large combined programs -
|WinDirStat||Disk usage statistics viewer and cleanup tool||https://windirstat.net/|
|ImgBurn||Lightweight CD/DVD/Blu-ray burning application||http://www.imgburn.com/|
|Vysor||View and control Android devices from Windows||https://www.vysor.io/|
|CrystalDiskInfo/Mark||HDD/SSD utility software and disk benchmark software||https://crystalmark.info/software/index-e.html|
|CLCL||Clipboard caching utility||http://www.nakka.com/soft/clcl/index_eng.html|
|GParted||Partition editor for managing disk partitions||https://gparted.sourceforge.io/|
|AutoHotKey||Automation (and more) scripting language||https://www.autohotkey.com/|
|Equalizer APO||Parametric/graphic equalizer for Windows||https://sourceforge.net/projects/equalizerapo/|
|f.lux||Adjusts screen colors based on time of day||https://justgetflux.com/|
|WinSetupFromUSB||Install Windows from USB, multiboot, etc.||http://www.winsetupfromusb.com/downloads/|
|Clavier+||Allows creating keyboard shortcuts||http://utilfr42.free.fr/util/Clavier.php|
|Benchmarking||Stress testing components of a computer|
|prime95||CPU stress testing (and used for the Mersenne Prime Search)||https://www.mersenne.org/download/|
|FurMark||GPU Stress Test OpenGL Benchmark||http://ozone3d.net/benchmarks/fur/|
|memtest86||Memory testing and diagnostic utility||https://www.memtest86.com/|
|UserBenchmark||Speed testing components with online comparison||http://www.userbenchmark.com/|
|Montoring/Overclocking||Monitoring, adjusting, and/or overclocking components|
|MSI Afterburner||Graphics card overclocking utility||https://www.msi.com/page/afterburner|
|NZXT CAM||General monitoring utility, some overclocking||https://camwebapp.com/|
|Ryzen Master||Official Ryzen monitoring/overclocking utility||http://www.amd.com/en/technologies/ryzen-master|
|Open Hardware Monitor||Lightweight monitoring utility||http://openhardwaremonitor.org/|
|CPUID||System information and hardware monitoring||https://www.cpuid.com/|
|HWiNFO||System information utility||https://www.hwinfo.com/|
|Rainmeter||Desktop customization tool||https://www.rainmeter.net/|
|SpeedFan||Fan controller and monitor||http://www.almico.com/speedfan.php|
|Core Temp||CPU temperature monitor||http://www.alcpu.com/CoreTemp/|
|DesktopInfo151||Lightweight desktop info tool||http://www.glenn.delahoy.com/software/|
|Cleaning||File system cleaning|
|CCleaner||System cleaner, startups control, etc.||https://www.ccleaner.com/|
|BleachBit||Focusing just on cleaning||https://www.bleachbit.org/|
|Office Suites||Document/Spreadsheet/Slideshow Creation|
|Compression||File compression for faster file transfer and/or space savings|
|Online Storage||Cloud/remote file storage|
|Messaging||Text, voice, and/or video messaging|
|Network and Connection|
|Windows Defender only!||Explanation referenced from Allan_M_Systems:||PCPP Thread|
|Editors||Creation, editing, recording, converting, etc.|
|Paint dot Net||...||https://www.getpaint.net/|
|Open Broadcast Software||...||https://obsproject.com/|