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article.gifII. PC Freeware - 7. Top 20 Freeware

The Top 20 freeware list on the Internet

The aldweb's freeware selection

You will find in this page a list of free programs and free tools for Windows XP. They will also usually work with Windows 95, 98, Me, NT and 2000. This list is limited to 20 freeware on purpose, while my objective is not to create a new freeware referencing site, but a "top 20" of freeware that comes from my experience in the daily use of these programs that, although they are being free, are very often just as good as many shareware or commercial programs.

I personally (almost) only use these free programs in addition to the development tools I use every day (and all are free !) and in addition to the ONLY TWO commercial software that I had to buy : Windows (of course!) and Delphi 3 (since then, Delphi even became free for personal use!).
And therefore, my hard disk of 8 Gb is far from being full and my Pentium running at 1 GHz is far from being overloaded.

In my personal selection, the programs have been splitted in 3 categories to ease both search and reading :
  • Office automation, Internet and graphical Tools
  • System Tools
  • Other Tools (games, network tools, programming)
Do not forget also to have a look on my 3 freeware (Gestion de Projet, Ma Page Web and Mémo Friends) that will nicely complement your tools list on your PC.


I use these programs on a regular basis and since several weeks or months. Therefore can I give you my "personal quotation", as a result of a mix that includes installation easiness (and uninstallation easiness !), use easiness, documentation clarity, real utility of the tool.
  • : excellent
  • : very good
  • : good

Download Size

You will also find the indication of the size of the downloadable program, which should help you in estimating the needed time for download.
  • : less than 1 Mb
  • : between 1 Mb and 2 Mb
  • : between 2 Mb and 3 Mb
  • : between 3 Mb and 4 Mb
  • : more than 4 Mb


Is also given the information about the language in which these programs are readable.
  • : in French
  • : in English
  • : both in French and in English (what a good job!)
Do not hesitate to let me know your comments about this selection, your proposals for adding other programs, and so on...

Office automation, Internet and graphical Tools (7 freeware)

I have put in this category a few tools that will assist you in your general office automation and web browser uses, whatever browser you might use : Microsoft Internet Explorer or Mozilla Firefox, or even another one.

The use of these tools together with Ma Page Web (HTML page creator) from aldweb will allow you to design nice Web pages and bring them to your "Internet readers".

Here is the list of the subcategories covered in this chapter :
  • PC protection (Firewall, Anti-virus, Anti-spyware)
    Your attention please: it is mandatory, before connecting to the Internet, to protect as much as possible your PC with ALL these tools or similar ones!
  • Office automation (word processor, spreadsheet, graphics, compression tool)
  • Browser and e-mail client (no recommendation, use the free one that you want)
  • Web page creation (consider using Ma Page Web) and accessories
  1. ZoneAlarm (Author : Zone Labs, Inc - USA)

    • Protection against PC intrusion
    • I personally do not like at all the integrated firewall of Windows XP and I had got used to using ZoneAlarm on my former Windows 98 PC. ZoneAlarm is a very efficient firewall that will protect your PC from intrusion of hackers while browsing on the Internet.

  2. AntiVir PE (Author : H+BEDV Datentechnik GmbH - Germany)

    • Anti-virus
    • This a full-featured anti-virus program. You can also download on a very regular base the free virus definition upgrades. This great anti-virus is free for a personal use.

  3. Spybot - Search & Destroy (Author : Patrick M. Kolla - Germany)

    • Anti-spyware
    • I cannot go on in this category without a proposal for an anti-spyware software to protect your privacy.

  4. (Author : - International team)

    • Office automation
    • Now that our PC is well protected, it is time to give you the link to this full-featured office suite that comes with a wordprocessor (compatible with Microsoft Word), a spreadsheet (compatible with Microsoft Excel) and a graphics editor. This fantastic suite, born as StarOffice in the 1990's, is 100% free.

  5. LeechFTP (Author : Jan Debis - Germany)

    • Transfert de fichiers par FTP
    • I have tested lots of FTP software which are programs used for transfering files from your PC to a remote systeme (your Web server, for example). It uses the FTP protocol (which means "File Transfer Protocol"). I always came back to LeechFTP even though it is no more maintained since the year 2000, because it is small, fast and dramatically efficient!

  6. Xenu's Link Sleuth (Author : Tilman Hausherr - Germany)

    • Internet accessory
    • Xenu's Link Sleuth checks Web sites for broken links. Very useful for keeping your site's links updated and having no broken links.

  7. BRS WebWeaver (Author : Blaine R Southam - USA)

    • Web server
    • BRS WebWeaver is a free personal web and FTP server (to share files with relatives, without using some public space... better for privacy!). Even with its small size (~375 KB) and low memory requirements (~4 MB) it provides lots of functionality at speeds that will impress you. On my side, I integrated it in the EasyGuppY pack which is made of BRS WebWeaver, PHP and the GuppY web portal, project in the open source software spirit which was born here, initiated by myself before it became such a success that it now has a dedicated web site and a full team devoted to develop it and make it live. You will become your own webmaster in a couple of minuts with this great GuppY tool which is so well served by BRS WebWeaver.

System Tools (6 freeware)

You will find in this category a few tools that will help you in your daily use of your Windows system.

Add to this list Mémo Friends (address and data book with notification of upcoming dates) made bu aldweb, very useful tool to no more forget important dates.

Here is the list of the subcategories covered in this chapter :
  • Windows customizing
  • Startup programs control
  • Windows registry monitoring
  • General System tool
  • Disk space follow-up
  • Personal Information Management (consider using Mémo Friends)
  1. DrvImagerXP (Author : Lexun Freeware - USA ?)

    • Full backup (image) of hard disk
    • It is hard to find, it is no more maintained, but DrvImagerXP is the only free tool that I know which is able to save and restore the FAT32 (of Windows 9x/Me) and NTFS (of Windows NT/2000/XP) partitions of a hard disk. More than once, this efficient software saved me from the "damned, I have to reinstall my system from scratch!"...

  2. RegSeeker (Author : Hover Inc. - USA)

    • Windows Registry cleaner
    • Its registry is the weak point of Windows, a cleanup from time to time helps it being fine. And, for this job, RegSeeker has a very good quality / price ratio!

  3. Registry Monitor (Authors : Mark Russinovich and Bryce Cogswell - USA)

    • Registry monitoring
    • Registry Monitor is a spy looking for the permanent registry accesses made by Windows. It is useful for programmers that want to trace read and write accesses to the registry. It is also useful for those who want to check what some free programs do...

  4. Imprimeur (Author : Mario Groleau - Canada)

    • System tool
    • This little program is ment to print an image of the video (PrtScr) or the active window (Alt + PrtScr). It is very useful to print examples of video without having to go through a usual application.

  5. Disk Space Monitor (Author : Jon Grieve - UK ?)

    • Disk space follow-up
    • Disk Space Monitor adds icons to the system tray showing the total and free space for any drives. Any drive letters available, either local or remote, can be shown.

  6. RegDir (Author : Pierre Torris - France)

    • Windows customizing
    • RegDir will change the color of the current active directory from yellow to green, so that it becomes very easy to know what is the current active directory in the Windows Explorer and also in most load/save windows. This little tool is just a must.

Other Tools - games, network tools, programming (7 freeware)

I have put several programs for relaxation in this category, or on the contrary that will be useful in your creating side for programmation.

Maybe, will you also need Gestion de Projet from aldweb, very useful tool for organizing and managing your projects (like programming, etc...).

Here is the list of the subcategories covered in this chapter :
  • Programming tools
  • Project management (consider using Gestion de Projet)
  • Little tools like Euro converter
  • Entertainment and Games
  1. Rapid-Q (Author : William Yu - USA ?)

    • Programming
    • Rapid-Q is a free Basic compiler and graphical development tool. It works pretty much like Microsoft Visual Basic or Borland Delphi. Thanks to Rapid-Q, there is no more need to buy an expensive development tool to create nice programs. Really THE MUST for programmers... and also THE MUST for those of you who would like to discover what software programming is like as Rapid-Q is really easy to use and works with the easiest language of all being Basic.

  2. Setup Generator (Author : Gentee, Inc - USA)

    • Programming tool
    • In my opinion, Setup Generator is far away the best free program to generate installations of programs. All my freeware used to be given away with Inno Setup (another great installation program) as an installation procedure.Setup Generator is easy to use, it has all needed features for this kind of programs. So, starting with Ma Page Web v2.1, all of my freeware will be given away with a setup program made by Setup Generator.

  3. BlockCAD (Author : Anders Isaksson - Sweden)

    • Entertainment
    • BlockCAD is for those of you who just love Lego bricks. Now they can virtually build their Lego constructions. This freeware is just needed for those of you that are old children... I am one of those.

  4. Aros Fractals (Author : Aros Magic - USA ?)

    • Entertainment
    • Enter in the fantastic world of fractals with this well made but processor and memory "consuming" freeware. Not really needed but it is so beautiful !

  5. EDConv (Author : J.F. Pacory - France)

    • Euro tool
    • EDConv is a little Euro / Currency convertor, easy to use and quite bright.

  6. Digger (Author : Andrew Jenner - UK)

    • Game
    • Digger was originally created by Windmill software in 1983 and released as a copy-protected, bootable 5.25" floppy disk for the IBM PC/XT. Digger was one of the first games I played with on my very first PC, and I had a great pleasure to find that someone had given life back to this great game of the 1980's.

  7. Laser Tank (Author : Jim Kindley - ?)

    • Game
    • Laser Tank is an original puzzle game in which you have to move a little tank around many traps until the tank reaches his target, an American flag.

Creation date : 01/01/2003 @ 00:00
Last update : 30/04/2007 @ 15:37
Category : II. PC Freeware

Print the article Print the article

react.gifReactions to this article

Reaction #5 

by Psybine 24/05/2005 @ 12:38

Dans votre "top 20 gratuiciels" j'ai decouvert c'est 2 logiciels:
- DrvImlageXp et BlockCAD , de part leur utilisation, mon permis d'en trouver 2 autres :
-PartSAve ( et MlCad (
partsave peut etre utiliser a la façon ghost sur disquette de demarrage et dans mlcad on a les lego technics.
voili voilou @+

Reaction #4 

by phil 13/07/2004 @ 21:34

bcp de gens prennent le temps de traduire, et je les remercie encore, alors utilisons les logiciels traduits et d'ailleur je ne vois pas pourquoi je devrais me mettre a l'anglais, a oui je dois faire un effort pour l'integration.

Reaction #3 

by oostveen 04/06/2004 @ 11:42

Les francophones devront s'y faire, l'anglais reste et restera encorelongtemps la langue privilégiée de l'informatique. Alors il serait peut-être temps d'arrêter d se plaindre.

Reaction #2 

by Leroumi 09/02/2004 @ 21:24

Bonsoir L'anglais et oui cela limite beaucoup l'utilisation des gratuciels hélas

Reaction #1 

by jocelyn 17/01/2004 @ 14:23

il est vraiment dommage que tous les meilleurs logiciels soient en anglais.
heureusement il y a les log de Aldweb pour compenser un peu.
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