dotTech Picks: The best of the best software/apps/services of 2010

2010 is coming to an end; dotTech has reviewed and featured dozens upon dozens of programs/apps/services in the past twelve months. It is now time to recap the best ones.

The following list – in no particular order – contains shareware and freeware programs for Windows, websites/services, and apps for iOS and Android; and it only contains software/services/apps talked about in 2010 – it does not list the many great programs that have been discussed on dotTech in previous years.

The best of the best of 2010

Shareware (Windows)

  • ArtStudio – Brilliant program that allows users to animate images with little to no graphical knowledge or skill.
  • WinUtilities Professional Edition- Despite any misgivings between YL Computing and dotTech, WinUtilities is a terrific jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none utility.
  • EASEUS Partition Master Professional – Very nice partition management tool that does more than format your partitions, without forcing you to download a 100+ MB program.
  • SIW Pro – Need a system diagnostic/information tool? SIW is for you. Has a freeware version, also.
  • FILEminimizer Office – It will cost you a good chunk of your paycheck, but a very handy tool for compressing PowerPoint, Word, and Excel files.
  • Tabbles – Absolutely brilliant file tagging/organization tool. Has a limited free version.
  • Magnifying Glass Pro – A magnifying glass program that does more than zoom in/out.
  • Process Lasso Pro – Install Process Lasso and let it worry about your rogue-CPU-using program problems. Has a free version that has some limited features but still has the basic core functionality.
  • Paragon Drive Backup Professional – Although now discontinued and replaced by Paragon Backup & Recovery Home/Suite Editions, Paragon Drive Backup Professional was (is) an excellent tool to backup your files with.

Freeware (Windows)

  • FILEminimizer Pictures – A program that allow users to easily and quickly compress images.
  • WinUtilities Free Edition – The freeware version of WinUtilities Professional Edition, while not as good as Pro, it still an excellent tool.
  • AdBlock Plus and other adblocking tools/methods – While ads may be the lifeline of many websites, some users may want to block them and these tools allow you to do exactly that.
  • Wubi – What to try Linux without going through the hassle of dual-booting and installation? Wubi is a Linux installer for Windows.
  • League of Legends – A free, micro-transaction funded game that is attractive to novices and hard core gamers alike.
  • EASEUS Partition Master Home – Freeware version of the Pro edition; has everything but the boot disc.
  • iPrint – Save paper by easily printing multiple pages to one sheet.
    • (dotTech talked about iPrint on December 25, 2009 – close enough to 2010 to be included in this list.)
  • IOGraph – Creates cool graphics based on how you use your mouse.
  • AxCrypt and TrueCrypt – The two best encryption utilities available on the market today.
  • YoWindow – View the weather, in style.
  • Teamviewer – Without a doubt one of the best tools to use to share/control computers remotely.
  • Lazarus – A Firefox and Chrome add-on that allows users to recover from oh **** moments where we fill out a form.
  • Virtual CloneDrive – Dead simple, malware free image mounting/unmounting tool.
  • CCEnhancer (aka CCleaner Enhancer) – Takes a brilliant tool (CCleaner) and makes it that much better.
  • NirLauncher – A wet dream for users who enjoy NirSoft and SysInternals utilities.
  • Avira/avast!/AVG/Microsoft Security Essentials – Four of the best free anti-malware programs available.
  • XBoot – Thoughtful program that allows users to create multi-ISO bootable media.
  • Rainlendar – Brilliant multi-platform task management application
  • Freemake Video Converter & Downloader – Two great utilities that allow users to do more than just convert and download videos.
  • Paragon Go Virtual – Although it doesn’t have as many features as Paragon Virtualization Manager, Paragon Go Virtual is a very useful tool that can be used to virtualize your computer.
  • Outpost Security Suite Free – A much awaited update to one of the best free firewalls out there.
  • CleanMem Mini Monitor – A small yet handy add-on to CleanMem, a terrific memory cleaning utility.

Websites/web services

  • Dropbox – The file uploading/backing up/sharing/etc. service to use.
  • Startup Applications List – Database of over 20,000 startup programs makes it an invaluable source for research
  • DownForEveryoneOrJustMe.com – Extremely useful website that allows users to get a second opinion on if a website is down or not.
    • (dotTech talked about DownForEveryoneOrJustMe.com on December 25, 2009 – close enough to 2010 to be included in this list.)

Android Apps

  • AdFree Android – Simple but genius app that lets users block advertisements on their Android device. Requires root.

iOS Apps

  • BargainBin – Handy iOS app that allows users to save money on Apple Store apps.

Conclusion

While there have been many quality software, apps, and services talked about on dotTech in 2010, the above are the ones that stand-out for one reason or another. If you disagree, or if you have other software/apps/services you would like to add to the list, let us know in the comments below.

Here’s to hoping for a great 2011, for you, me, dotTech, and everyone else. Happy New Year’s everybody! (In advance.)

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21 comments

  1. janetb

    VirtualBox allows the use of many programs that other virtual apps don’t because VirtualBox supports 32-bit TrueColor and DirectX 3d acceleration….And it works on Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit (so you don’t need to get Win7PRO to run XP apps on Win7)….

  2. newJason

    I have to add Foxreal’s YouTube FLV Downloader to my best of list.
    I still use it everyday to download hulu shows, you tube videos, and live radio streams while I’m at work, and Watch them when i get home, with no commercials. I am just a media junkie.
    Happy New Year Everyone :-)

  3. redmaledeer

    To acr #1 – About Chrome privacy concerns, you might check out the Iron browser. It claims to be the same as the Chrome browser, but with privacy concerns addressed. If I remember rightly Chrome is open source, so others can make such modifications easily.

  4. normofthenorth

    I don’t think iPrint can hold a candle to the free version of FinePrint. At least last I checked, if you delete a worthless page in iPrint, it isn’t smart enough to “close up” the print job, to make the previous page and the following page consecutive!! So it still insists on printing the useless page, but it prints it BLANK!

    Dumb. Fineprint knows what we want it to do, and does it.

  5. Pandora

    @Robbie:
    Got to agree with Evernote, KeePass, Threatfire. First two I use daily.
    Pretty new to dotTech so dont know if these came up in 2010 [or what the T&Cs for this topic are, but it’s Christmas and Good Will to all men etc.]
    Anyway this year I have also “discovered” and come to love:
    datacrow [catalog anything, easily…ie no/min typing eg just ISBN , barcode ] http://www.datacrow.net/ ..it’s MediaMan on class A illegal substances, oh and free too!
    and AutoHotKeys [again minimal typing-or single key-, maximum results] http://www.autohotkey.com/ also free

    Sorry if these were done but didnt make the cut – for me they are little gems

  6. Tortuga

    Hi Ash

    Great list indeed.
    Some of those apps had escaped me – Darn, more reading & research … *sigh*

    Good health & Happy New Year.
    And continued success to dotTech!!
    We all do appreciate the site, the articles & your funny side always makes me laugh :*)
    You’ve created a *great* place to hang out & learn. Bravo to you!!!

    Peace

  7. acr

    I’ve been reading a bit about AVG 2011 lately. On Majorgeeks the av was bashed by mods and not recommended to be downloaded. There was actually a red letter recital on the AVG product page about how MG’s could no longer recommend it unless some fixes were made. Then AVG was supposedly removed on the Dell wiki as a recommended av. Lots of trouble for the former king, I suppose. I don’t know of another antivirus that had a red letter warning to not install. Maybe the reason was because AVG has such a large following. Apparently AVG has been fixed to MG’s satisfaction now as there appears to no longer be a red letter warning.

  8. acr

    I would have to add maybe Google Chrome browser as one of the best of 2010. It is not perfect, far from it. But I think it is fast and suits my needs- now if they would just do something about the privacy issue.

    I would probably also include Windows Media Player 12 and just Windows 7 in general. That’s kinda weak, I know. But WMP12 is pretty nice.

    Now to get on to 2011 and the releases of AIMP3 and Internet Explorer 9…