25 must-have softwares for a new install

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I recently had to configure all my tools after a fresh Windows re-installation. This went well and quick as I keep up to date a list of my favourites tools. This way, I just need to go through my list and I know I have most of the things I will need to work. Next step would be to automate those installation but it will be for another article !

I though it was the occasion to make a list of the most useful ones.

So here it is !

Browsers

Those two are the main one I use for my everyday web browsing and basic testing. Of course, when needed, I switch to other ones like Safari, Edge...

  • Chrome
  • Firefox

Utilities

Perfect to capture your screen (image and video) and edit the screenshot to add information on it.

I think it won't be convenient to introduce 7-Zip any more... But for every compression job, he'll be there !

A nice tool to manage the light coming from your screen. It will adapt it to the time of day and the kind of light you should have on your room.

Please don't tell me you keep your passwords and secrets on a piece of paper somewhere near your desk... Use a password manager like KeePass (local) or Dashlane (synchronized)

I use this to have a look at LDAP directories, search for entries. Very useful if you manage some running corporate applications and you sometimes want to check groups and accounts to help people around you.

I think I'm on the best team when it comes to store all kind of "for later" files. This application helps me finding what is taking space on my disk and manage it.

Communication

Nothing big to say here, we all need to communicate with colleagues and other people. My big regret is to have like 4 or 5 application for that depending on who my interlocutor is !

  • MS Teams / Amazon Chime / G Suite...

Of course ! What would we do without it ?

For me the best visual tool to work with Git. It can save a lot of time when you are stressed or trying to solve some git weird issues.

Always have a Python install on your computer ! Think about the number of little things you could automate in your daily life ! If you are interested to know more, check this nice resource: Automate the boring stuff

If you are building APIs, those two tools should be on your disk ! Insomnia is light and very quick to use whereas Postman is a little bit more complex but allows you to create collections, share them with your team, document it, and a lot of other features

Database access

Here it depends on your database system preference but let's admit that it is always useful to have some of those already installed on your machine !

Edition

I always switch between VS and VSCode depending on the work I do. I mainly use VS for back-end and VSCode for front but it more a habit than anything else !

While VS and VSC are great tools, I feel very comfortable writing quick notes with notepad++. It is like my virtual notebook.

Sofwares I open when I don't use online editors like Diagrams

Used by my team for every design related stuff.

Terminal / transfers

I use those to open remote connections when I'm not using simple RDP or ssh solutions. They are useful to store configurations and organize your assets.

This is a simple command line with useful linux-like commands. But you could also use Windows integrated Bash shell or just Power-Shell if you feel more comfortable with it.

Use the client part to connect to ftp/sftp servers to transfer and retrieve files. You can save your servers configurations and share them with your team.

Conclusion

This is the list of the main tools I use in my everyday work. If I have some free time, I often start by installing them all so I'll be ready when I need them.

Anyway, use the tools that suit you ! Save your configurations somewhere a make a list like this so you don't spend too much time when your next Windows installation will come !

I hope this article was useful for you. Don't hesitate to give me your feedback on these tools or to suggest me other ones.

You can share this on the comment section bellow or contact me directly on my Twitter !

Sandeep Panda's photo

Interesting list. Thanks for sharing. I suggest adding General Programming tag since this post is generic in nature and applicable to most devs. Also, helps with more visibility.

Flolight's photo

Thank you for the advice, good suggestion indeed !

Deactivated User's photo

Cool list!

Definitely pick up VLC Media Player since Windows doesn't come with any great media players built-in. (imo)

You might be able to forego Flux if you're happy with Windows 10's built-in Night Light functionality which seems to do the trick, but lacks some of the custom light settings.

Screenshot 2020-10-29 014256.jpg

Also, definitely recommend the new Windows Terminal if you use WSL and / or PowerShell. Incredibly customisable and you can grab it in the Windows Store.

Flolight's photo

Oh yes thank you ! I also use VLC outside of work, I like it. I like the personalization provided by f.lux but for quick config indeed the Windows 10 feature is great ! And a big yes for the Windows Terminal ! Although I'm not sure it will be available yet for the corporate W10 version I'm using... I will check that... Currently, I use also ISE for Powershell.