Best Basic Tools or Software for My Computer
Whether you’ve just purchased a new PC or reinstalled Windows, the first task you’re likely to do is to install apps. While there are dozens of amazing Windows programs, knowing which Windows 10 software must have makes it easy to set up a new installation.
Unsurprisingly, Google Chrome is the top browser to choose from. It’s still super fast, includes little conveniences like instantly searching Google for an image, and Chrome’s library of extensions is vast. Throw in cross-platform syncing that lets you open your desktop tabs on your phone, and vice versa, and you’ve got a great browser for all purposes.
Chrome is not without its faults, however. A lot of people want to avoid Google’s pervasive tracking of Chrome, and there’s a lot of RAM going on. But the good news is that you’ve got a lot of other great browsers to choose from, like Firefox and Opera.
If you only choose one cloud app service, Google Drive is the one you need to install. It offers 15 GB of free storage that is shared across your Google Photos and Gmail accounts.
Google Drive offers an app for every major platform so that you can take your files anywhere. On Windows, the app is now called Google Backup and Sync, which allows you to back up folders on your computer and external devices.
It’s also very easy to share files with others, plus it plays well with Google’s productivity suite. Whether you use it as part of your backup plan, as a cloud flash drive, or to set up shared folders with others, Google Drive is a key choice.
Whether you want to try your hand at image manipulation, need a way to blur sensitive info on screenshots, or want to remake old photos, everyone should have an image editing program installed. Photoshop is the gold standard for this, but there are a lot of free tools that are more accessible.
Paint.NET is our first choice. It’s far more powerful than Microsoft Paint, but it doesn’t overwhelm you with a lot of confusing tools. You can easily blur parts of the image, auto-level photos to make them look better, and add text and shapes to your photos in just a few clicks. Plenty of plugins also allow you to expand its functionality.
Windows 10 includes Windows Defender, which is a good antivirus for most people. However, it is wise to keep a secondary security program installed.
You can’t beat the Malwarebytes for this. The free version allows you to scan your system for malware that your antivirus might not catch. And for a powerful blended security solution, it’s worth the upgrade to Malwarebytes Premium.