rev. 17 April 2008

Computer Level

License: Open Source
Description: Memtest86 is an OS-independent program (used on boot-up) with a long history. It’s used to vigorous test system memory for any errors.

Operating System Level

License: Freeware
Description: CrapCleaner (or CCleaner) is a small but powerful utility to clean registry inconsistencies, broken associations, and accumulated garbage from your system. A revered tool in certain circles.
License: Freeware
Description: Defraggler is a powerful defragmentation tool by the makers of CCleaner. It offers per-file defragmentation as well as nice visualization—much better than Microsoft’s built-in tool.
PCWizardPC Wizard
License: Freeware
Description: PC Wizard is a nifty little program that shows you all the information you might ever want to know about your machine, including manufacturers and models numbers for all your parts, as well as performance information, benchmarks, and even temperatures. Current version has support for the new AMD64 chips.
Process ExplorerProcess Explorer
License: Freeware
Description: This famous tool by Mark Russinovich is a must-have for any techie or power user. It shows details information about all your machine’s process, including parent processes and resource use. Perfect for any software toolbox.
License: Freeware
Description: nLite is a nifty tool, written in .NET, that will let you customize a Windows 2000/XP/2003 install disc by adding or removing components, integrating drivers, and adding tweaks and patches. Great for either the system administrator or the oft-formatting enthusiast such as myself.
License: Freeware
Description: From the guy who brought you nLite comes vLite, a customization tool for Windows Vista. It’s still the same .NET kind of program, with a slightly different interface. Be warned that it’s still early in its development, and doesn’t offer anywhere near the level of customization that its predecessor did (Vista uses an entirely new installation scheme).
License: Open Source
Description: Formerly known as Ethereal, Wireshark is a cross-platform (GTK+) program to monitor and analyze any and all network packets going to a from the computer (and sometimes the whole network). An amazingly powerful tool.
§1445 · By · October 12, 2006 ·

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