Essential Free Software For A New Build

Recently one of my hard drives decided to die on me, unfortunately it happened to be the one with the operating system on. After getting a new drive (Samsung Evo 840) and installing a fresh copy of windows 7 professional I had no idea where to start, it’s been so long since I started from scratch. Therefore I decided to compile a list of ‘essential’ pieces of software I couldn’t live without, here it is:

1) Avast Anti-Virus Software (

This piece of software is the best free anti-virus I have come across. It has a very quick and easy install and gives you a justified sense of security along with a ‘Everything is good’ message every time you hover over the tray icon. It even speaks to you if you want!


2) Chrome (

No matter what browser you prefer there is no disputing that chrome is fast and easy to use, therefore making it the perfect basis for getting everything we need.

3) 7-Zip (

Space is valuable these days and more and more software companies are compressing there installers for faster download speeds and decreased bandwidth usage. For that reason it’s important to have software that is able to de-compress these packages. 7-Zip is my tool of choic for this.


4) VLC Media Player (

Media is stored in all different formats now, and there comes a point where windows media player just can’t hack it anymore. That’s when VLC comes in. Straight from the download it will support and play a huge variety of file types and with an active community it’s rare that you will find a file that won’t play.

 5)  Dropbox (

Whilst most of you may be saying “but that’s an online service”, and you’d be right, however it’s software allows instantaneous syncing of files and folders from within windows explorer. This makes it much quicker to keep folder structures and still have them on the cloud.

6)*** Spotify (

If you enjoy music as much as I do this is a must have so that you can have your tunes on in the background while installing all of this software. A premium membership is a mere £10 a month and gives you access to millions of songs!

*** = Not essential but makes for a happier user

This should get most people by however I will be writing one for developers and one for designers in the near future.