18 Portable Apps that Every Tech Needs

The title says it all. I am a tech and I have found all of these portable apps to be very useful so I thought I would share them with you. All of them can run directly from your USB flash drive. I hope you will find them useful too.



This article has since been updated. You can view it at http://www.thetechmentor.com/posts/35-portable-applications-every-tech-needs/

Angry IP Scanner – Scan a range of IP addresses to see which ones are in use. Also tells you hostname, MAC address, open ports, computer name, workgroup, and logged in Windows users.

Follow-Me IP – Utility for finding your external IP address quickly.

Restoration – Allows you to undelete files that have been accidentally deleted from the computer.

ClamWin Portable – One of the best free antivirus utilities and it is available in portable format.

LockNote – A simple text file that allows you to store usernames, passwords, phone numbers, and more with 256bit password encryption.

Portable OpenOffice – An open source office suite that is compatible with Microsoft Office, Word Perfect, Lotus, and more in portable format.

SIW – A system analysis tool that tells you almost everything you need to know about a computer. Useful for finding information about your hardware, Windows configuration, and settings.





WinAudit – Another analysis tool that is useful for finding out information about a computer.

RockXP – View and change product keys for installed Microsoft products including Windows very quickly.

Server2Go – Allows you to install an apache webserver right on to your flash drive with no configuration.

FileZilla Portable – I have always been a big fan of the FileZilla ftp client. Now FileZilla is in portable format.

HFS – An http file server that allows you to easily share files right from your USB drive.

Firefox Portable – Bypass those spyware-infested browsers and use Firefox straight off of your USB drive.

Portable Opera – Or if you would rather use Opera it is also available in portable format.

uTorrent – A very powerful standalone BitTorrent client.

Wiki on a Stick – Useful for storing product keys, configurations notes and more.

CPU-Z – Very detailed information about your processor and other components.

PStart – A Start Menu like program that allows you to organize and quickly run your portable programs.

This concludes the list. If you have any that are useful to you please post them. I am interested in hearing what helps you on a daily basis.




About The Author

Casey

With 20 years of experience in the IT industry including time spent running a successful IT consulting business, Casey enjoys teaching other techs and consultants how to succeed in an ever-changing industry.

20 Comments

  • Covarr

    Reply Reply September 9, 2006

    Ghostzilla. It’s a browser based on the Mozilla engine, but it has the unique ability to not leave any tracks on the computer you use it on, and it has a higher level of over-the-shoulder privacy due to the ability to make pictures invisible, turn page to B&W, etc.

  • Butchiebags

    Reply Reply September 11, 2006

    Convert. this is a tiny program whith which you can convert just about any measurement, does bit’s and bytes, very handy!

    http://joshmadison.net/software/convert/

  • kon

    Reply Reply September 12, 2006

    key changeer no longer works. Try winkeyfinder (google it)

  • Ping

    Reply Reply September 17, 2006

    TiddlyWiki is lightweight wiki that does not need a web server, just a client browser!!
    Great for Wiki on a Stick.

  • Qwexer

    Reply Reply September 25, 2006

    A good portable browser also is firefox portable. Thats all I use. http://portableapps.com/apps/internet/firefox_portable
    or just search google for firefox portable.

  • AnswerMan (Ruben)

    Reply Reply November 9, 2006

    WOW. THANX.

  • realin

    Reply Reply January 30, 2007

    thanks mann .. it rox ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Peter Tootill

    Reply Reply February 27, 2007

    Nice list of tools… I would add porta-putty for ssh.
    Also, I would love a portable virtual desktop.
    I use Unix/Linux a lot and am lost without multiple desktops on Windows. I use Virtuawin on my own machine – but it writes to the hard disk on first run. It is GPL, so I’m sure it could be tweaked.
    Any one any other suggestions?

    Rgrds

    Peter

  • Cameron

    Reply Reply March 15, 2007

    RootkitRevealer and Process Explorer from Sysinternals (originally created by Mark Russinovich and Bryce Cogswell – now owned by Microsoft) are both handy USB apps when using any computer, especially public access computers. KeePass is a nice utility for storing passwords etc., uses AES and Twofish. For more robust security, TrueCrypt can be used to secure a USB drive.
    Rgrds
    Cameron

  • Brandon

    Reply Reply March 21, 2007

    I use a variety of apps on my flash drive. Including:
    Bart’s PE (with lots of add-ons)-it allows you to install a bootable version of windows on your flash drive;
    a-squared HiJackFree-shows a list of what is running on your computer (explorer add-ons, startup items, etc.);
    Ad-Aware- detects and removes adware and spyware; CCleaner-(I use a batch file to register and unregister dlls) it deletes temp files and can clean up your registry;
    ClamWin Portable- a portable anti-virus program;
    Devcpp-a portable c++ program with a built-in compiler;
    HiJackThis-shows a list of startup items and bho’s;
    HoverIP-networking tool;
    SUPER-a program that can encode/play audio/video files;
    uTorrent-a bit torrent app;
    as wall as many others previously mentioned: firefox, siw, process explorer, as well as some resource editors, spybot, open office, putty, etc.

  • Peter Tootill

    Reply Reply May 10, 2007

    I’ve found the solution to my virtual desktop need: monitors from http://www.godlikesoft.de/html/products.html

    Also useful for snmp devices is ireasoning’s mib browser, which also doesn’t need install if you use the zip version: http://www.ireasoning.com/mibbrowser.shtml

    Rgrds

    Peter

  • Techguns

    Reply Reply May 30, 2007

    This TCP/IP has been portable for years.

    NetstatViewer

    http://www.misec.net/freeware/

  • badR

    Reply Reply June 25, 2007

    you can find any portable app in
    http://usbtools.wordpress.com/

    regards

  • icemax

    Reply Reply July 13, 2007

    Hey .. people …

    very very good portable application ๐Ÿ˜•
    please go to
    http://www.WinPenPack.com …..

    very very good …. please go to it…..

    helo friends. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • James

    Reply Reply September 6, 2007

    Follow-Me IP seems to be a dead link. fmip.org does not respond to DNS searches. If you have a copy of the app and the license allows it, please post a copy on your server so the rest of us can benefit.

    Thanks for a great list of useful apps.

    There are several sites that have tremendous lists of portable apps (tinyapps.org, no-install.com, etc.). Depending on your needs, there are many that are very helpful to have on your thumbdrive. I personally like a copy of Perl installed there (portable xamp or other sources) and I use quite a few of the GNU Win32 tools (all portable by definition).

    One hint that I find useful, I use a lot of command line tools so I have a batch file in the root of my thumb drive that appends the executable directories on my thumb drive to the path. I’ve included that below for those who are interested …

    —————————-
    rem Setup DOS path to access thumb drive programs
    @if ‘%1’ == ” goto Usage

    set PATH=%PATH%;%1public;%1GnuWin32bin;%1PortableApps;%1xamppxamppliteperlbin

    @goto done

    :Usage
    @echo Usage: %0 drive_letter:

    :done
    ———————

    Obviously you will have to change the PATH= statement to fit your configuration.

    Usage is simply “thumbpath i:” where you replace “i:” with the drive letter that your thumbdrive gets assigned.

    Thanks,

    – James

  • Marcus

    Reply Reply November 6, 2007

    Truecrypt is a very powerful on the fly encryption program. Either on local or USB mode. See http://www.truecrypt.org/

  • Tobeus

    Reply Reply November 26, 2008

    Dial-a-Fix
    A very useful shortcut for common windows XP repairs (includes re-registration of common dll files, registry fixes, etc). I usually get it from softpedia.com. Not exactly designed as a portable app, but it runs as a stand-alone tool without need for installation.

  • Aaron

    Reply Reply March 11, 2010

    Excellent tools. Thanks for posting all these, saved me decades of finding them on my own. I agree with the top comment, ghostzilla is amazing and I’m running off it right now. Thanks for all the nice tools; I’ll have a blast using all my new toys!!!

  • Charly

    Reply Reply November 8, 2011

    Serva32 /64
    Best multi-server out there..
    Seven protocols, less than 1Mb, portable and it won’t touch your registry!

    http://www.vercot.com/~serva/

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