For those using more than a computer (think about the desktop/laptop combo, for example), having a portable apps suite around can come in really handy. After all, why bother installing all those programs one by one, when you can simply download a single package and keep it on a thumb drive? If you’re really lazy, you don’t have to install anything – just insert the USB drive into the computer you’re going to work on, then move it to the other one when needed!
PortableApps.com is the address of the site you’ll have to visit to find out more about the package with the same name, and you’ll also be able to download one of those three versions available – Platform Only, Lite, and Standard. Their sizes are 1 MB, 46 MB, and 124 MB – but we are only talking about the downloadable files here. The rest of the things to know… we’ll get to them right in the next paragraph!
The Platform Only version has only 1.3 MB installed, so you can use it with virtually any flash drive available, but it doesn’t come with any programs – you only get the platform you’ll use to download the software and use it on any computer you connect the USB device to. The good part is that this seems to be the only multilingual version.
Moving on, we have the Light suite, with 150 MB installed, and including Mozilla’s Firefox, Thunderbird, and Sunbird, next to ClamWin, Pidgin, Sumatra PDF, KeePass, Sudoku, Mines-Perfect, CoolPlayer+, Pnotes and Abiword.
Finally, there’s the Standard version, a package that requires 355 MB for installation, and includes the same stuff as the Light suite, only that Abiword is being replaced by the portable version of the OpenOffice.org office suite.
Since PortableApps.com has won a lot of big prizes so far, I am sure you’ll love this suite, although there’s always room for better, and the big challenge with it is that new freeware programs worth using will keep popping up regularly, so keeping the suite up to date and adding the best tools when needed will always require a lot of work. Anyway, it was a pleasure to tell you about this free portable apps suite, and I am sure it’s going to be a pleasure for you to use it, too!
Oh, yeah… Did I mention that PortableApps.com also works in Linux, as long as you’re using Wine? Even more, it’s fully compatible with Windows 7! 😉