How to Turn USB Device into Almost Full-Scale PC
Today I want to go through a bunch of amazing resources from where you can get tons of free portable applications which can be installed or simply unpacked on any external storage device(USB flash drive, iPod, portable hard drives and etc). Once you get your favorite programs on a USB stick or something similar you can use them from your office, school, friend’s PC, etc. It’s in a way like taking software part of your computer wherever you go, it can be your firefox(incl. your settings and bookmarks), email program(with all the settings), office program, games, media player, image editor and lots more.
Being able to install Firefox as a portable application is already something awesome and compelling because, similarly to regular version portable one can also utilize any of available firefox extensions, making it much more then just a browser. I mean it’s just a USB stick but possibilities are literally limitless, for instance installing greasemonkey addon on your portable firefox will let you do almost anything from downloading youtube videos to removing ads from favorite websites(myspace). Or add to it recently discussed gspace addon and you’ll be able to use your gmail account as online storage tool from any computer. more, more and more ….
Where to get free portable software?
There are many websites where you can get all sorts of portable applications, and mostly free. Two of the most popular resources for windows users are PortableApps.com and PortableFreeware.com. Check them out, in case you like something and feel like trying out simply download program on your PC and unpack it into your external device. Portableapps.com also has portable apps suite, all-in-one tool that incorporates a firefox web browser, thunderbird email client, openOffice office suite, calendar/scheduler, instant messaging client, antivirus, sudoku game, backup utility and integrated menu, all preconfigured to work portably, definitely something good to start with.
When it comes to MAC users a bunch of resources available as well, have a look at Sourceforge.net – OS X Portable Applications(approx. 25 programs) if you find nothing interesting there check out some of the other options I have listed below.
More Portable Applications for Windows:
- Wikipedia – List of Portable Applications
- – here you can get applications separately or as all-in-one combo tool
- DamnSmallLinux – Linux from USB (either from Linux or Windows)
- No-Install.com – over 200 applications
More for Mac:
- Macworld – Your apps in your pocket
- Portable Apps by Carlo Gandolfi
- Sourceforge.net – only 4
- Freesmug.org- OS X Portable Apps
Some Related Articles and Tips:
- LifeHacker – QuickLunch Your USB Workspace (Recommended)
- 23 Things to do with a thumbdrive
- Tomshardware.com – Windows In Your Pocket
- Lifehacker- Carry your live on a thumbdrive (or iPod)
- 18 Portable Apps that every techie needs
- Handy Programs to Put on USB stick (lists only windows apps)
- – blog reviewing portable software, check out latest post on
- Cnet has an excellent video about portable apps, where to get them and some cool but non-free extras, check it out here
- Palm OS – software for your PDAs
- PalmOpenSource.com -more apps for Palm
- [update] – How-to: Installing Ubuntu Linux on a usb pendrive [debuntu.org] – you’ll need: (1) a ubuntu liveCD, (2) a usb thumbdrive of at least 1G and (3) a running Linux operating system
- [update] – How-to: Installing Knoppix on a USB Key [tuxmachines.org] – you’ll need: (1) Knoppix CD, (2) a usb thumbdrive of at least 1G
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