Portable Applications – A Convenient Necessity

Have you found yourself using a computer that doesn’t have the applications you need or is locked down to the point where you can’t install anything?

I’ve come across this a few times and more often than not they have an Internet connection that is rather slow making application downloads agonising.

For a while now, I’ve loaded up my trusty Patriot Xporter XT 16GB USB stick with a suite of application from PortableApps. I figured that since I had oodles of space that I would set aside some space for application that I might need to use every so often.

So that got me thinking about what apps I would need to install.

Given that I do quite a bit of coding at work (XHTML, CSS, XML and SQL), Notepad++ Portable is very handy for its automatic colour coding and tabbed interface to make navigation between files much easier. It’s also far quicker than the Windows notepad application  awhen working with larger files.

Then I realised that at work, we’re still stuck on Internet Explorer 6 (not to mention Windows XP which makes me want to cry). My browser of choice is Firefox and I really appreciate the tabbed browsing plus the various add-ons you can install such as NoScript (great for blocking unwanted Flash and JavaScript elements) and AdBlock Plus (ads begone!). I also use another add-on called Xmarks which syncs my bookmarks and stored usernames and passwords across all of my Firefox installations.

I also face the dilemma of having to keep track of so many personal and corporate username and password combinations. To help manage this problem, I use KeePass Password Safe Portable. It is highly configurable and allows you to define shortcut keys, generate random passwords whilst encrypting its database using a range of encryption algorithms (including AES and Twofish) to keep this sensitive information safe.

Also, as a “just in case” I have also installed the OpenOffice.org Portable application suite if I ever end up on a computer without Microsoft Office on it.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg but you can browse all of the applications here of which some might take your fancy. I like to think of portable applications like an American Express card – don’t leave home without them!

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  1. […] in an earlier blog post, Portable Applications – a Convenient Necessity, I wrote about some of the benefits of portable applications and some of the ones that I like to […]

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