Ask dotTechies: What is the best freebie you have ever received?

Freebies are very popular on dotTech; and why shouldn’t they be? Everyone loves saving money thus everyone loves freebies. At this point in dotTech’s life – going to become 2 years old later this year – dozens of freebies have been posted. I am interested in knowing what freebies dotTechies consider to be the *best*. So, for this Ask dotTechies segment, I ask “What is the best freebie you have ever received?” The freebie does not have to be thanks to a dotTech “heads up” – it can be any freebie you received from anywhere. Like the last Ask dotTechies, there is no poll for this thread; rather please share your input via the comments below.

To get the ball rolling, I will share what I consider to be the best freebie I have ever received: WinPatrol Pro. No, I did not win WinPatrol Pro via a giveaway; Bill Pytlovany – the developer of WinPatrol – was kind enough to provide me with a free license because he appreciates the work I do on dotTech. (Maybe in the future dotTech and Bill can team up to sponsor a WinPatrol Pro giveaway, who knows.)

Now, it is your turn – what is the best freebie you have ever received?

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  1. JohnD

    I’ve been thinking on this one for awhile and decided that the best freebie on the open market I have received is xplorer2.  The best I have gotten from dotTech is AnVir Task Manager.   Plus this thread has given me many welcome leads to other freebies, thanks!

  2. ptlf

    My best freebie- SNAGIT.  I use it daily, have tried other screen capture software, but nothing compares.  I only have version 7, (they are up to version 10)  but it still works for me.

  3. Praful Thakkar

    I received many free software from dotTech, GOTD – and the best one I like is AnyBizSoft PDF to Word (one of the 30 licenses were given away and I was one of the winners.)
    Keep up the good work, Ashraf.

  4. summersa

    Well, I have a number:
    – Revo Uninstaller Free – Uninstalls
    – Glary Utilities Pro – General Utilities
    – Sync Back – Backup
    – Free Download Manager – Downloads
    – Avira – Antivirus
    There are a few more but I reckon this is enuff for now.

  5. Skye-hook

    Without a doubt, Paragon Hardisk manager 2010 Suite!
    If you want to be SURE you can recover EASILY & completely from any system failure, including if you can’t boot up- use this! It even has a Recovery Wizard that offers to recover for you at bootup! It works like a dream! It has really saved me! The Paragon backup Ashraf has for free here right now is also excellent! Check the Paragon site, but I THINK that version also has the wizard at bootup. I think.   +Whoever gets the 30 free Suite copies here on dottech is truly lucky! :)
    #2- Online Armor! I can’t imagine what I’ll use in about 10 days when it expires! I don’t know how I lived without it before got it on GOTD.

  6. joa1

    TeamViewer, at,  always free, always available, for personal use… already mentioned it here once on DotTech… thought deserves to be mentioned again as THE BEST FREEBIE ever… there are others of course… this is just a pointer for other DotTechies to check it out and grab it (recently updated to v. 5.xx… truly a MUST HAVE.)

  7. Ami

    Actually there are two.One of them is ashampoo 2010 and the other expert pdf.Two brilliant programmes for me.I can edit docs. and save them using ashampoo.The two best for me by far!!!!

  8. Stephen

    Oh, I forgot my favourite little utility that I use so much I forget its not part of Windows.  I use it at home (WinXP) and at work (Win2000 installed as user).  Pastes the paste buffer as plain text with the shortcut ‘<Windows>V’.  Simply brilliant.

    PureText from

    Probably not of interest from Vista onwards, but I similarly take ClocX for granted at home and work.  It puts up a transparent clock with many options, alarms, etc.

  9. Stephen

    Has to be a security program – imagine how much they would really have to charge without a corporate liscencing income!  Think ZoneAlarm back when MS didn’t bother with firewalls.  Think AVG, AVAST, Spybot S&D, AdAware …

    All taken for granted nowadays.

    Then there’s the free browser you are using now.

    GFI Backup (ex-Titan), IrfanView, Audacity, FastStone Viewer, 7-Zip.

    To nomimate some promo’s, though, I have to look back some time to Evidence Eliminator (like CC), Acronis Partition Manager (ran nicely off floppy disk), XOOM Music Clean (all from cover disks).

    What I’ve never seen (including in OpenOffice) is a decent free database with the useability of Access (for the average home user).  Remember your data is important to you, otherwise you wouldn’t put it in a database (derrr!), so you’ve got to have confidence that it’ll work, back-up, not corrupt your data, and that you’ll be able to cope with version updates for the program, and migrate across PCs and Windows versions (for free).

  10. Orchid

    Hmm….best “freebie”….in programs…It’s difficult to choose just one.  I have several that I use everyday.  One of my favorites ….CapsLock/NumLock Warning is something that has helped me countless times and always used.
    However….”freebies” can also mean other things.  The best one outside of programs is dotTech.  The information, advise, reviews, help, general chat, etc. are all the best and most valuable.  Receiving offers and freebies are just an extremely great perk of being a part here. At least in my opinion.
    Each person that comes here and offers their opinion, help, advise, etc. brings a new dimension to the community here making it even more wonderful.  So in that respect….dotTech is the best “freebie” on my end.

  11. Shi

    I have two best freebies, Ashampoo Burning Studio 2010, use for all my burning instead of Nero. And Anvir Task Manager to get easy access to process that need to be killed and the few extras with it.

  12. Inas

    Actually, I believe all the freebies I’ve received are good & valuable – but then I truly appreciate everything I receive – so it’s difficult for me to pinpoint only one best freebie….and that’s the way it is…. for me.


  13. Karl

    I have a few entries ..
    The one that’s given the most back to me is Paragon Backup software .. you can count on it when you need it.
    I really love WinPatrol because I install and try out software often and it keeps them honest .. I know what changes it’s making to my startup and more.
    Paint.NET is great image editor .. my favorite feature is the clone stamp tool to cleanup images.
    As for system utilities .. I’ve personally got a lot of (safe) mileage out of CCleaner.  I use WinUtilities to help cleanup my friends and family PCs .. install one package that does a lot.

  14. james

    ERUNT  – is a lifesaver  without it i would have had to do full reinstall.

    FastStone Image Viewer – much more than just an image viewer, also check out:-
    FastStone Photo Resizer  –  is also a re-namer
    all  free but well worth a small  donation

  15. Josh

    Saved me from total organ failure a number of times.
    Without a running system, all the other (albeit it excellent programs) would be less than useful. It is not foolproof, but, at the very least, more often than not, it enables you to retrieve your data when Windows fails.
    The other progs are useful and convenient, but the above is certainly essential.

  16. JonE

    The best software freebie of all time; that’s a hard call.  There are so many that I use on a regular basis that I’m happy with, many that have already been named.
    But of all the freebies I have intstalled the one that got me to shell out some cash for the Pro version, I have to admit, is WinPatrol.
    I could certainly name my favorites in categories, but I think one of the most useful freebies I’ve ever used, and still use is AIDA32 and System Information for Windows.

  17. Grant

    Best tip from dottech for a freebie for me has been FastStone Capture. From GAOTD it’s been 1AV Capture.
    Best ‘free’ software I use more than anything is Gimp & now, MyPaint.

  18. Emrys

    I once had a limited version of RadioTracker that had no expire date. I had to do a system restore and lost it. No new free version is available that I know of. Great software for songs and internet radio.

  19. Mike

    OK, a current kinda-freebie offer:

    Norton Internet Security 2010 / Utilities 14.5 / Ghost 15 , free after 2 rebates (1 an upgrade rebate), with free ship; you just end up paying the tax on the original price.

    I must say that I’ve been happy with NIS 2010 (but have had major issues with Utilities in the past, and would not use it again without hesitation).  Norton rebates come though smoothly, based on my many years of submitting them.

  20. Mike

    I attended a free Microsoft half-day program last Fall to introduce Windows 7.  A nice program, at which I was given a Microsoft t-shirt, can opener (I know, but hey–it’s nifty and comes in handy), and a free year’s subscription to Norton Internet Security 2010.  And then afterwards, Microsoft sent me a free 1-year subscription to its TechNet service, allowing me up to 10 free non-expiring licenses for each of its Microsoft products (and the right to download them).  A great way to get copies of earlier Microsoft operating systems in all flavors, Windows 7, and the latest Microsoft Office (2010). 

  21. Aesar

    Like Ashraf, as with many of the DotTech family of users, I work with several disparate programs, and I have come to appreciate both CCleaner and Revo Uninstaller as essential freebie software.

  22. blu

    Time Freeze from Wondershare (still going on, btw…very much like Shadow Defender or the *old* Returnil before it became a bloated mess). Or Norton Security Suite from Comcast. Of course, THAT costs $164/month (the cost of their service) but they throw Norton in for free … aren’t they nice.

  23. Adrian

    “Freebie” is defined as software that normally requires payment that is offered for free, sometimes for limited time/limited licenses. So OpenOffice and other permanently free software are not considered “Freebies”.
    My best freebie ever grabbed was TuneUp Utilities 2010 via a drawing.

  24. Mayank

    Mine Is Alzip 8.0!
    Well It Is There In Dottech. I havn’t Got The Serial Key As It Is Still Not Released But I Have Registered And It’s A Great Compression Tool According To Me.

  25. Bruce Fraser

    Comodo Internet Security (which is always free). It has one of the top 2 or 3 rated firewalls; but what makes it unique is that it is free for business as well as home use.

  26. James

    Free and useful advise … like the countless instances of “how-to” … or wonderful and meaningful reviews on computer topics … or tips etc.
    The list can go on  and on.  

  27. dbrookman

    ERUNT  – backs up registry (all hives).
    Can revert the registry to an earlier good configuration with no problem using ERDNT (both downloaded at the same time).
    If you cannot boot, you can recover using BartsPE and ERDNT.
    Saved my bacon more times than I can count

  28. Siddhartha

    Hi Ashraf! This is my first post on your site, though I visit daily. My favorite freebie ever, has been Paragon Drive Backup Professional 10.
    Its an immensely useful software and its still been given away free on

  29. Dlira

    It’s difficult to mention just one, so here is a small list of my favourites:

    FastStone Capture
    Lupas Rename

    All of these programs are excellent, and I use most of them every day. Selecting one is very difficult, but I would probably go for xplorer2Lite (or possibly FastStone Capture).
    Thanks to Ashraf for very good comments on software!

  30. Yau

    My favourite is the all-in-one photo manager (organize, edit, publish) Zoner’s PhotoStudio (Home edition) offered earlier in Giveawayoftheday.  Paragon’s Hard Disk Manager (I use v8.5) is also very handy and robust multi-purpose suite for hard disk partitioning & image backup.

  31. Mike Brazil

    Well, I’m afraid that the best “freebie” I ever received wasn’t from dotTech. I beta tested Windows 95 and Windows 98 and received a CD of each operating system as well as one of Windows NT. However, the Paragon Hard Disk Manager Suite 2010 that I received from dotTech is probably the best freebie I’ve received in a long, long time. Thanks again, Ashraf!

  32. seahound

    FastoneCapture for Windows Version 5.3 is a marvellous tool I use several times each day.
    RevoUninstaller also comes to mind.
    Then Avira Free AV; Mamutu malware detector; Comodo Firewall; Superantispyware; and Evernote.
    All free, and all excellent.
    Thanks Ashraf for your hard work in bringing these jewels to our attention for free!

  33. Ron

    Microsoft Technet accidentally leaked a promotion that only lasted a few hours. I was given a guest membership that entitled me to download Win 7 Ultimate and 2 serials for free. Since I’d let my old Technet subscription lapse after Vista was released, I went for it. MS caught on in about twelve hours and canceled the subscriptions, but I had my software by then.

  34. chinaguy

    An Asus Eee computer with Windows 7 and Microsoft Office ultimate 2007 pre-installed. Unlimited licenses of both. I don’t know though if it would actually be considered a freebie it was more of a drawing but I got it for free.