There are many free utilities available for use with a personal computer that can help improve you computing experience and environment. Many of the free versions are “stripped” down versions of the pay products but provide a great amount of functionality. Listed below are some of the more popular free utilities for a personal computer.
There are several components included in Google Desktop that provide different functionality and services. One utility that is included is the sidebar which is comprised of different gadgets that can be changed to suite your needs. Typical gadgets include local weather, news updates, clock, games and a calendar. There are hundreds of gadgets on Google that can be downloaded and installed to fully customize the sidebar.
Another great feature of Google Desktop is the search functionality. Just as Google indexes the Internet to enable better searching, Google Desktop indexes the data on your system so you can use Google search to locate data. You can customize which data on your computer is indexed by Google. Typically, you would want to index all of you files and email/
Trillian is an instant messenger (IM) client that allows you sign into and send instant messages with a variety of services. This is very useful if you communicate with people that use different IM clients. For example, you can login into both your AOL and MSN accounts via Trillian and send messages using both clients.
In addition, Trillian allows you to organize your open messaging sessions in a window with tabs so you don’t have multiple windows open on your desktop.
CutePDF is a very, basic PDF (portable document format) file creator. After installation you can create PDF files from any document that can be printed. When you are ready to create a PDF you simply select the CutePDF printer driver and print the document. Once you send the document to the printer you will be prompted for a file and name and the location where the file will be saved. Omce done you have a PDF filed!
Ad-Aware allows you to detect and remove any spyware or adware from your system. Though most virus scanning software has the ability to perform this function the software does not always detect adware and spyware as well as a utility specifically designed for that purpose.
I hope these utilities help make your computing experience easier and more friendly!