best freeware

The BEST freeware I've found.

page 1

There are a lot of *really* neat/cool, FREE programs out there, on the WWW. Here I'm telling everyone which are my favorites. If you have favorites, PLEASE let me know the details, and I may add them here. I list ONLY programs which are FREEware and are super-easy to use.

SPYWARE: If you worry that a program might contain "Spyware" check it at SpyChecker before you download it. Or try

Sometimes a program which is FREEware is succeeded by a newer version which is NOT freeware. For that reason, when you download a really good program, KEEP the original file just in case. Once you have downloaded a newer version, have used it for at least a month and are sure it is 100% freeware and not time-limited, then delete the original download. I have a folder called "Downloads" where I keep these and in it is a text file done in Notepad where I make a note of the filename, where it came from, when and what it does. Sure works for me!

1. Irfanview:

Irfanview427 Kb (version 3.12)

The author (a student in Austria, named Irfan Skiljan) is constantly improving this program. IrfanView is a very fast graphic tool for Windows. Probably this is the program I use more than any other. I like it so much that I made my own website about IrfanView; it lives at There is an Irfanviewusers group at Yahoo! Groups; for more information on that, visit

2. Buttonz & Tilez:

freeware 2,817Kb

Written by Bjorn Ischo in Germany. Buttonz & Tilez is a powerful software package for web authors. There are two applications in this package, Buttonz! , which renders buttons of various size and shape, and Tilez! which generates seamless textures using a procedural approach. In Tilez! can choose more than 20 basic texture types, all of which can be modified to suit your needs. Additionally, textures can be combined in layers to produce more complex ones. You can even import images to include them in a texture as a layer. Buttonz! offers a wide range of button shapes and effects, as well as the batch rendering of several similar buttons with different captions. The button faces can either be filled with a texture, an imported image or a gradient. The author's email address is

3. Freecards:

freeware 100Kb

FREECARDS lets you create customized, multimedia greeting cards on your IBM PC or compatible computer running MS-Windows. Your greeting cards can contain text, animated pictures, and sound (MIDI music and WAVE sound).You create the cards as executable files. When you send them to another PC, they expand, are displayed, and disappear automatically. Images must be BMP format and since the result is an .EXE file, you don't send them to Mac users.

4. EXIF Viewer:

freeware 469Kb ZIP file

EXIF viewer is a simple image viewer application for photos taken with digital cameras. It's capable of reading EXIF information embedded in photos as well as a little thumbnail. Because small thumbnail is already present in most photos displaying it is really fast. EXIF viewer can also provide detailed information about photos (shutter speed, aperture, etc.) and conveniently list them for comparison purposes. EXIF viewer also displays image histogram. It also features copying and moving and deleting of selected photos. A single photograph can be displayed in separate window or in a full screen mode. I use this to remove all the "data" from pictures before uploading them to a website or emailing them to make the file size smaller and transmission faster. Note that Irfanview (Number 1 above) can show the EXIF and also the IPTC info.

5. Toono:

freeware 353Kb ZIP file

By clicking on buttons, you can change the various parts of the face and make some really funny faces. They now have a second version of it, using a picture of Santa Claus.

6. Fractal Maker:

freeware 433Kb EXE file

This allows you to make all kinds of fractals. A really neat little program. If you like it, you are asked to make a $20 donation to the charity mentioned in the HELP file

7. Likse HTML Viewer:

freeware 453Kb ZIP file

A stand-alone reader of Internet files writen in HTML (Hypertext Markup Language). So small you can put it on a diskette. (remember those?)

8. Virtual Magnifying Glass:

freeware 453Kb ZIP file

This program shows a magnifying glass lens that follows the mouse movement. You can move the lens around the screen to view magnification of any screen area. To close the lens, click left mouse button. You can stretch the glass vertically and horizontally. Really cool!

9. VicMan's Photo Editor:

freeware 453Kb ZIP file

This is the free version of VicMan's Photo Editor; you can make nice buttons with it and apply effects to photos.

10. Spectroscope:

freeware 204Kb EXE file

If you make websites, you will find this a blessing. This is a tool for using safe colors on the www. BUT..... note that Comodo indicated that this software included the virus "TrojWare.Win32.Exploit.Nuker.36@28371024."

11. Mortgage Manager:

freeware 204Kb EXE file

This is a realy simple, versatile and easy-to-use Mortgage calculator. Also available at The only problem with it is that once you start running it, you cannot exit or stop it. You have to click "Continue" to the final screen. Not a big problem. See also item 57 on page 2 for more calculators.

12. PowerSearcher:

freeware 3093Kb ZIP file

If you make websites, you will find this a blessing. This one is not for beginners; I had some difficulty with it. BUT, it can be a VERY handy tool and it might be wise to grab it for when you really need it. Finding a file in a large number of HTML files could be a very major but very important job. When I switched my ISP years ago I had to change "" to "" in a large number of files and long after I was done and had uploaded the files, I picked up on numerous instances where I had missed the correction. Here, your tool would have been VERY useful.

Power Searcher is an advanced file search and print utility that can find files by full or partial name, size, date, attributes, or contents. You can specify whether you want to find just files, just folders, or both. File contents can be searched for multiple keywords and the lines where the keywords/phrases are found can be viewed at a glance without having to open each file. Power Searcher also comes with a built-in hex viewer that allows you to take a peek at the contents of binary files, an option to add folder to a favorites list, the ability to save searches, and more. Search results can be printed as file listings and also exported to a comma delimited format.

Craig" helped me with it. He said: "Try using the 'Whole document' option as it appears you are searching thru files that are not pure text. The 'Line Only' method of searching is used when you know the files you are searching thru are text only. For files that have been created in Microsoft word or other applications (which gets compressed) you have to use the 'Whole document' option....following on from that, the only way that ANY search program could find text in a compressed file is to know what program originally compressed it and use the same algorithm to Uncompress it before doing the search. This would probably not be possible as only the company that made the word processing/text editing package would know the algorithm to uncompress the file and you would need the algorithm for every text editing package out there to allow a search on those types of files. Also I notice that your tolerance level is just 5 bytes!! Just read the help files and you will see what the tolerance is used for. This was defaulted at 5Mb at should be kept so for the average search.

I did find another SEARCH and REPLACE tool; it is listed on page 3 at #63.

13. Firefox Browser:

No picture required; by now everyone knows that FIREFOX is the best browser available on Planet Earth and it is FREE. If you want to be safer than Microsoft's Internet Explorer allows you to be, then be sure to get this tool.

14. Tyler:

freeware 319Kb ZIP file

This is a software package which takes an "unlimited" number of photo snapshots and puts them together to form a larger picture. NOTE: This URL is no longer working; if you know the new one, please tell me; thanks!

15. sTile, formerly known as Harmwave:

freeware 307Kb ZIP file

A really neat little program you can use to make your own seamless backgrounds for your webpages. Comes complete with various textures etc.

16. Convert:

freeware 168Kb ZIP file

This little program will convert from *any* measurement of *anything* into any other measurement that you can imagine. Really terrific!

17. Clipboard Magic:

freeware 618Kb EXE file

I've searched the WWW long and hard for the ultimate Clipboard Extender. Everyone needs a Windows Clipboard extender; saves a LOT of typing. This one does a very nice job, is small, fast and easy to use. In Dec. 2006, I had some problem with it so I downloaded the newest one, version 4.014. NOTE: if it won't "archive" your clips (i.e. remember/save them) then shut down Clipboard Magic and restart it.

18. Harddisk Search and Stats:

freeware 600Kb ZIP file

This is a very handy tool for finding things on your hard disk. I *thought* I might have a TXT file somewhere on my HD, and wanted to get rid of it. I knew, from a print-out, that it contained the words "Frostbow Home Inventory." It searched the HD and found all the occurrences of that text. It offers 3 kinds of search: by filename, by file type or for text INSIDE a file.

19. HTML Shrinker:

freeware 40Kb ZIP file

This handy utility will take any HTML file and shrink it by removing unneeded tags etc. You can specify what to leave or what to remove. I have used it to reduce some of my files, making them faster to download and to save space on my ISP's computer. Harald Heim has done a great job on this and he continues to look for ways to make it better. If you make websites, you really *must* have this one! Harald calls this one "Linkware." I found that I prefer to leave any "end-of-line" tags in place, making HTML files easier to edit later. Harald is from Nuernberg, Bavaria, Germany. Version 1.07 was released Feb. 5, 2000. If you don't already have VB5 Runtime Files installed, you'll have to download the larger version, 1.4MB. THANKS, HARALD!

20. Ultimate Paint:

freeware 1,917Kb ZIP file

Ultimate Paint is a paint program. Its main purpose is to draw and edit graphics, although there are several additional built-in photo-processing functions and effects. It has a very flexible brush handling method which encourages creative drawing. You may also find it useful to touch existing drawings and photographs. All pictures are handled 24 bit (true color). Version 1.91f is freeware. It has a LOT of filters/features/effects which you can apply to your pictures.

21. Terragen:

freeware 2,482Kb ZIP file

This is an absolutely fantastic program, still under construction. For the time being, there is, I believe, a free version. With this, you can draw "original" landscape scenes like a professional artist!! I have made a few and some of them live at When you download it, be sure to get also, the "" file and the "" file. Also, get the Brooksbank Tutorial. This one is addictive!

22. FolderSize:

freeware 174Kb EXE file

This program scans a selected drive or folder and reports the size of all the folders in it. The size can be viewed in bytes, in percentage of total space or as a bar graph. This is a stand-alone program; no installer, DLLs nor registry entries. To get rid of it, simply delete the EXE file. Great if you are going to burn a CD but want to make sure of the total memory needed by the current folders and all its sub-folders. See also #73 on page 3.

23. DCEnhancer for Photos:

freeware 525Kb ZIP file

Digital Camera Enhancer does the hard job of noise reducing, skin smoothing and automatic balance control for you. The program works best if you have bad light condition (indoor, shadows etc..) and your image is somehow off. So if some of your images are already fine, you won't see much difference. One thing makes DCEnhancer different from other tools - reducing the noise and skin smoothing algorithm. It makes DCE ideal for making cool portraits and close-ups! And, yeah; THAT is Jennifer, alright!

24. LookDisk tool:

freeware 655Kb EXE file

LookDisk is multi-functional disk tool that you can use to search for files using various parameters. You can search for text in any files, find duplicate files (by name or content) and also get an overall view of your disks and space usage. Additional features include several advanced filtering options, use of external viewers, and more. The list of found files can be saved or printed. LookDisk can handle large files without using lots of system resources. This one is very good for finding, for example, if a certain (image) file is being used in any of my websites. I searched, for example, for "bearhead.gif" in all my website folders: C:\websites and it worked fine. See also items 12 and 63.

25. TreePad PIM:

freeware 427Kb ZIP file

TreePad is a personal database program, a powerful information organizer, Personal Information Manager and outline text editor. It is ideal for storing notes, emails, URLs. It features extended search, edit, export and import options. Supports non-western fonts. Has a "Windows Explorer" type gui.

26. RenameFiles:

freeware 140Kb ZIP file

This little program will enable you to change the names in any folder, all at once, or only selected files in different folders, in almost any way you want. Very configurable. Easy. Written by Jan Falke. This is one everyone should have; a "necessary tool." It seems Jan's website is gone; you should be able to download it from this site though:

27. Color Picker:

freeware 45Kb ZIP file. Color Picker takes and displays a Color Picker in which you pick your colors it then takes and converts it to the format used in the Body tags in HTML version 3. It will then optionally transfer it to the clipboard so that you can easily place it in the HTML file you are working on.

NOTE: THIS item seems to be no longer available. The link has gone bad as so many do. Sorry to see it go. If you REALLY need it badly, email me; I can send you a copy, a 96Kb .exe file.

An alternative might be "Absolute Color Picker 3" from:

28. Microsoft GIF Animator:

freeware 1,026Kb ZIP file Another tool for making your own animated GIF images. This one is VERY easy to use. I can not find this one on Microsoft's website any longer but there are lots of sites where you can download it. I tried it with Windows XP and SP2 and it worked just fine.

29. DeKnop Button-Maker:

freeware 511Kb ZIP file

Sam Francke in Holland is making this VERY excellent button-making tool. VERY configurable; has options most of the others do not have, for spectacular buttons. Sam keeps making this program better all the time. GOOD stuff. With this, you'll never need another button-maker.

30. Color Code Pro:

freeware 226Kb ZIP file

This is one of the most useful utilities for any web designer. It is a program that will retrieve a color of your choice on screen, and return the HTML, RGB, and Delphi color codes. All you have to do is drag your cursor around the screen, and drop it over the color you want get the color codes for, and that can easily be transported into your image editor of choice, html editor, or Delphi!

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