The Must-Have Windows Apps and Utilities


I’m pretty sure that most linux users must have been introduced to computers using windows before finally reaching enlightenment, i certainly know I was. So here is a little selection of apps and utils that I put together when I was a Windows user. check it out, because there is some pretty cool stuff here. Word of warning, the stuff on here is a little netbook/EEE specific, but still worth a look even if you’re not on that hardware

Launchy
Launchy is a program that allows applications and directories to be accessed with a simple keyboard shortcut.

Call launchy by pressing Alt+Space, start typing an application, press enter

Simply press Alt+Space, and start typing the name of the application or folder, Launchy will usually guess correctly after just two or 3 characters have been typed. If launchy guessed wrong, just select your choice from a drop down (launchy will remember your choices for next time) or press escape to dismiss the active window. Say good bye to the start button forever!

EEECTL
EEECTL is a utility which allows you to overclock, or underclock the CPU of the ASUS EEE PC.

In addition, it also provides a reading of the CPU temperature, allows control of the system fan, and also screen brightness

Fully configurable - you can set your own profiles for clockspeed, fanspeed and screen brightnessThe software can be modified via a .ini file, allowing individual users to set their own parameters. This means custom profiles can be created allowing users to overclock or underclock as much as they want (at their own risk ofcourse).

The program was written for the EEEPC 700 series, but is compatible with all celeron M based EEEs – head over to http://www.eeeuser.com forums for more advice on this program, as well as pre altered .ini files best suited to your model.

Perfect for squeezing a little extra performance or a little extra battery life out of your machine, depending on your needs.

Be warned, some configurations can lead to system instability

Bat Stats
As all netbook users know, battery life is important. with such a portable device, its very common to find yourself a long way from the nearest power outlet. so for this reason, its important to have accurate battery life indicator.

One problem that many laptops suffer from, is the lack of a ‘smart’ battery, often leading to battery indicators being wildly inacurrate.

One program that overcomes this problem is batstats. It works by profiling a battery once (letting it run down from a full charge, timing it, and recording voltage levels each minute). This allows the software to accurately assess your batterys remaining charge in minutes and percentage by cross referencing it against the recorded data.

batstats was written for the EEE PC, but will work just as well on any laptop (so long as a custom battery profile has been created.

Batstats will also act as a ‘low battery alarm’ and ’emergency shutdown’ – meaning you can disable the Windows power management options for this.

batstats1batstatsThe only shortfalling of this program is that, aesthetically, it is somewhat ugly, but the tray icon is fine, and once configured, you shouldnt ever need to open the main program again.

I highly recommend this program to anyone using a ‘dumb’ battery in their netbook.

More of these coming soon.

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