Portable Software and Applications

Portable Software and Applications

This article was written circa 2006, in response to my need to manage a variety of different computers scattered about the college. Many of the devices were often stand alone PC’s or Laptops.

Portable Applications on my USB (2005 / 2006)

I’d carry the following applications on my USB Drive, at a time when a 16GB or 32GB drive was considered sufficiently large for most purposes.

 PStart                 Menu (Portable Menu)
 1 by 1 		Application for playing music files one at a time.
 Abyss Web Server 	Web Server on a USB stick.
 pmWiki		        A powerful portable Wiki
 Ant Movie Catalog  	Film and Movie Review Software
 DeepBurner		DVD and CD Burner Software
 Freemind		Mind Mapping Software
 FSCapture		Image Capture
 FSResizer		Image Resizing
 ImgBurn		DVD and CD Burner and ISO Software
 Launch			Find and Start applications
 MediaInfo		Examine Media
 Portable Unison	Backup Software
 Screamer Radio	        Internet Radio Player
 CSVed			CSV Editor
 SIV			Computer Performance Analyser
 Skype			Internet Telephony and Video Communications
 Softi FreeOCR	        Optical Character Recognition
 Stamina		Typing Tutor
 VDownloader		Video Downloader (Get Videos off YouTube)
 XPSysPad		Advanced Menu to access for XP tools.
 Killbox                Process & File killer
 PortTunnel             Simple Portmapper

 AutoFix-AutoPlay	Microsoft tool to fix auto start problem
 Driver Magician Lite	Find and Backup your Drivers
 Hasher			Find MD Hash Files
 Micoburner		Burn CD and DVD files
 Netscan		Scan your Network for Security holes
 Putty			SSH and Telnet
 SIW			System Information for Windows
 WinAudit		System Audit
 Your Uninstaller	Uninstaller Programme	

 Arcade! Classic Pack 	Arcade Games from the 80’s
 Hocus			Rolling Screen Game Play
 Bridge Building Game	Bridge Building Game	

 7-ZipPortable		7 Zip Compression Programme
 Audacity Portable	Audacity Sound Editing
 ClamWinPortable	Virus Protection
 DosBox		        DosBox to play older games and programs
 FileZillaPortable	FTP File Transfer program
 FireFox Portable	Firefox Web Browser
 Gain Portable		Internet Messaging
 GIMP Portable	        Graphics Editor
 KeePass Portable 	Password Management
 KompoZer Portable	Web Page Editor and Designer
 Notepad++		Advance Programmers Notebook
 OnScreenKeyboard	On Screen Keyboard
 Open Office		Preprocessor, Spreadsheet, Presentation, Drawing Software (All Free)
 ScummVM		Game Software Emulator
 Sudoku		        Numbers Game
 Sumatra PDF		PDF Program
 Sunbird		Calendar Program
 Thunderbird		Email Program
 Toucan			Backup Software
 VLC Player		Play almost any Video or Media File
 MD5Sum		        File integrity Checker
 WinSCP		        Secure Copy Program

I had this notion that ie teachers and students could easily transport commonly used applications with the between school and home.

Students often faced software compatibility issues at home and I saw the Portable USB as a way of circumventing these compatibility issues.

I come from a Unix background where applications run directly from within a single folder and I loved the idea that USB Applications ran in a single folder and by-passed the system registry.

Apple’s OS X is an example of an operating system which often allows programmes and applications to run directly from a Folder or USB Drive. For example in OSX a program folder is simply copied to the Applications Folder, likewise many well written programs can be run from folders or USB sticks in Microsoft. UNIX and Linux have always had the advantage of running directly from Folders, where installing only means running a script or programme which copies files and folders to the correct location.

Getting Started with Portable Applications

I wrote this article to encourage the use of portable apps in school, home and office. – Circa 2006

An increasingly wide range of software of applications can be stored on and run directly from your USB Stick also known as a Thumb Drive or Pen Drive in some countries.

All of the above to say quite simply that now you and I can easily run programs and software directly from our computers with necessarily requiring installation, so how do I do it?

It is important to select the fastest and largest USB you can afford, 4GB or bigger, choosing a reputable brand generally ensures speed however price as we all know does not necessarily reflect quality. I find I have success using SanDisk USB’s. You could also choose to use an external USB Hard Drive, these often range from between 80 GB and 250 GB. You now hold in your hand the tools needed to transport your Applications and Data from one computer to another easily and quickly which has clear and obvious advantages to Students, Teachers, Travellers, Parents and Trainers who switch frequently between computers and venues.

The hardest part is keeping your USB organised so that you can easily find your applications and software programmes.

Many USB manufactures provide a U3 Compliant Menu as well as a selection of free U3 Compliant Applications. U3 Applications work well however, you often need to purchase for other “U3 portable applications”

SanDisk provide a great introduction to U3 here. http://u3.sandisk.com/tour/swf_no_wave/tour_en.asp
(U3 was discontinued in 2010)

I have chosen to use free applications wherever possible and for the same reason I use a free menu system called PStart available at http://pegtop.net/start/

These websites offer open source software available for use on your USB or portable hard drive

About Roland

Family, God, People, Architecture, Pursuer of Truth, Wisdom, Education, Community, Truth, Patience and Prosperity.
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