Cool PC Apps: The Top 50 PC Applications for Freelancers
Poor PC freelance users, we never get the love we deserve! So to help rectify that, I took some time to round up the best 50 PC apps that freelancers can use in their business, in no particular order. Everything from time tracking apps and online storage apps, to anti-virus apps and instant messaging apps, well-known favorites to new-comers in beta, we got a comprehensive list of PC applications to help you organize your digital workflow.
Toggle is a great time tracking tool that helps you keep track of your time during projects. It is mostly a web app, however it has a downloadable desktop app that allows you to use their time clock easily without having their website up and running. And the best part? It is free!
Dropbox allows you to share files with others who also have Dropbox. I use it for one of my clients and it makes life alot easier than uploading the files and sending a link. Dropbox has a desktop application that puts a folder on your computer, so it acts just like your “My Documents” folder, and automatically syncs for you.
Klok is a nice application to help keep track of the time you spend on client work. Klok costs $15.99 for one license and requires Adobe Air to power it. I tried out Klok before they switched to a paid version, and I must say, the interface is very nice!
6. Mozilla Firefox
7. Mozilla Thunderbird
9. Adobe Creative Suite 5
I think this may be a given for the majority of us freelancers, however, the Adobe Creative Suite does exist for Windows. It includes such programs as Photoshop, Acrobat, Illustrator, and many more depending on which suite you purchase.
10. Intuit Quickbooks
A great tool to help you manage your business, Quickbooks has everything from invoicing to financial record keeping. They have several different products to chose from, and offer a free trial as well.
Take notes, manage your paperflow, and keep an inspiration journal with Evernote. A companion to manage all of those notes and napkin drawings right on your desktop. Evernote also features apps for your phone for on-the-go note management.
Unfortunately (and when you least expect it), viruses can hit your computer and cause great frustration and lost of time to take care of. Avast! is a great anti-virus solution to help keep your computer healthy. They even offer a free version if you want to try it out.
13. Google Talk
For all the Google lovers, Google Talk is the desktop equivalent to Google Chat found in Gmail. Chat with friends, family, and even clients and prospects with Google Talk, without ever having to open a browser. Another great feature of Google Talk is an email alert that alerts you when you get an email, which I find very handy!
The most popular browser for Apple comes to Windows! Safari is an excellent browser with a little Mac love. Great addition to your list of browsers, especially for all the web developers and web designers who need to test their sites in all browsers.
A convenient way to access your files from anywhere and to backup your files, SugarSync is an online backup service that features a desktop download to ease in management and phone apps to allow for access of your files anywhere.
17. Microsoft Office
Microsoft Office features such apps as Word (word processing), Excel (spreadsheets), and PowerPoint (presentations) and all of your basics to manage and run your business and increase your productivity.
McAfee is one of the leading anti-virus apps for Windows machines. With features like real-time scanning and up to three computer licenses, McAfee can help keep your computer safe from attacks and viruses.
21. Adobe Reader
22. Microsoft Outlook
Microsoft Outlook (now part of the Office suite) is a nice email client that helps you stay on top of your overflowing inbox. Stay organized, find messages easier, and reply quicker are many advantages to Microsoft Outlook.
A new app for me (and I plan to try it out), F.lux is made to help monitor the brightest of your screen depending on the time of day. Set how bright you want your computer to be depending on your usage, and save your eyes!
24. Windows Live Messenger
26. Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware
This app was a life-saver recently when viruses hit my computer hard. One of the best free scanners out there, Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware will scan your computer for viruses and malware that sometimes other anti-virus programs won’t catch. After the scan, it will print you a report of what it found and take care of all the dirty work in getting rid of any infections.
An interesting app to surely solve some productivity issues, BubblesHQ takes any website and makes it a convenient desktop app. I used it with much ease for managing my Gmail inbox and online CRM, and it was very nice not having to have a browser open all the time.
A simple application to help you keep track of your time, Tick is there to help you account for all of your billable hours. Tick stores all of your information online so you never lose your time spent!
Think that just because you had a Windows machine you couldn’t get all the loveliness that is iTunes? Think again. iTunes has a Windows app so that you can listen to your favorite jams and rock out while you are working on client work.
Another great anti-virus software, Kaspersky will keep your computer free of viruses and infections so that you can focus on your freelancing work. They feature a free trial to test drive their software as well.
31. Yahoo! Messenger
Yahoo! Messenger is one of the most popular and widely-used instant messaging apps in use today. Chat with friends and family, video chat with prospects, and check your friends’ statuses all inside the convenient desktop application.
32. Active@ File Recovery
It has happened to all of us I am sure, something happens and we lose our files, be it on our hard drives, portable hard drives, CDs/DVDs, or jump drives. Active@ File Recovery is an app that lets you recover your files so you can get back to work again.
Never lose an important file again because of your computer crashing. Carbonite is a great online application that also features a desktop app to help you manage your files and store them safely online.
37. AOL Instant Messenger
AOL Instant Messenger (AIM for short) is one of the longest-standing instant messaging apps out there. Chat with all of your buddies, and now use your Facebook account as a login and chat with your Facebook friends though AIM as well.
Whenever you need a simple FTP client, SmartFTP steps up to the plate. For whatever needs you have to upload files to your server, SmartFTP is a great free app to help you upload and download files on your server.
Another great financial management app from Intuit, Quicken allows for you to manage every facet of your personal finances and freelance finances in an easy to use application. Quicken allows for budgeting, setting financial goals, and keeping on top of your debt obligations all in one easy to use app.
Manage your social media life with Twhirl. Everything from Twitter to Facebook to Friendfeed, Twhirl makes it easy to stay on top of your social media in an application that fits right on your desktop, using Adobe Air to power it.
44. AVG Anti-Virus
45. PDF Creator
For those that don’t want to invest in expensive PDF software, PDF Creator is a great open-source program that allows for the creation of PDFs. Create PDFs to your heart is content for all of your business’ needs.
An open-source FTP client, FileZilla is great if you need a simple FTP solution. Upload files to your server, or set up a FTP client for one of your clients with an easy to use application for Windows.
Need an all-in-one instant messenger? Well Pidgin (like the bird) is to the rescue! Pidgin is an universal instant messaging app that will allow you to log in to all of your accounts, and manage them all of them from one place.
CintaNotes is a personal note keeper. Keep all of your notes organized with this free desktop application and get rid of your post-it notes! CintaNotes features fast searching and the ability to run it on your flash drive, so you can take it anywhere!