22 Free Windows 7 Apps That You Should Know About

Microsoft’s Windows 7 brought with it a revolution in the way the Windows operating environment worked, behaved, looked and felt. Though loaded with a host of useful features, many third-party apps out there can actually make life much easier for any average Joe. Hence, we present a collection of 22 freeware for Windows 7. Hang on tight and enjoy the ride.

1. Google Quick Search Box In Windows 7 Taskbar

A not-so-publicized feature, Google quick search box for Windows adds a Google button next to the Windows orb in your taskbar, and allows you to perform a variety of Google searches right from your desktop. It is included as part of the Google Toolbar package for Internet Explorer 8.

Google Quick Search Box Windows 7

Google Quick Search Box

2. Windows 7 Setup Customization With Win Integrator

Win Integrator allows you to install Windows 7 the way you want, providing complete freedom choose what to install and what not, and remove features and programs, add drivers or updates as per your liking, all prior to installation. Very easy to use and quick in getting the job done.

Win Integrator

3. Auto Login And Lock Windows 7

It may be a source of annoyance to all the impatient users like us who hate to wait for startup programs and Windows processes to load once they’ve logged on to their PCs. What if there was a way to have the operating system log in automatically, and then lock itself down so that the programs continue to load in the background while the user can attend to some other tasks. Auto Logon & Lock does exactly that.

Auto Logon & Lock

4. Auto Run, Perform Actions, & Sort Files Based On File Extensions

Psycho Folder is a powerful command-line and XML based tool that monitors a user-specified folder for changes and executes specified operations based on file extensions. With this tool’s XML configuration, the possibilities are limitless.

PsychoFolder

Psycho Folder

5. Open & View Any File With Universal Viewer

Much like the Total Commander Lister but with better and advanced features, Universal Viewer supports viewing of most major file formats, including MS Word, Excel etc, and also comes with context-menu integration, making it possible to use the software from virtually anywhere in the Windows OS.

Universal Viewer

6. Customize Windows 7 Taskbar Thumbnails

An interesting tool, which allows modification to the thumbnail size of Windows 7’s much-heralded Aero Peek feature. Useful especially if you want a closer, larger preview of what’s going on in your active windows, or maybe watch a miniature movie!

W7TTC Capture 2

How To Resize Thumbnails

7. Update Windows Offline On Multiple Systems

AutoPatcher Updater is a useful tool if you have to install Windows updates on multiple systems, and want to preserve precious bandwidth in downloading the updates to ever system individually, or save time, or both. This tool downloads updates for any version of Windows from Microsoft’s servers, and makes offline installation possible on any system running that version of Windows. Must have for people managing large networks.

Auto Patcher Updater

AutoPatcher Updater

8. Extend Windows Media Center On Dual Monitor Display

Maxifier is a nice little tool for those running Windows Media Center on a dual display. Not only does this software extends WMC to the secondary display in full screen mode, but it does so without letting Media Center capture your mouse. Now you can use your PC as your would normally while enjoying WMC in full screen mode.

Maxifier

9. Turn Off Display, Pause Media, Notify Contacts When Locking Windows Desktop

MonitorESHere is something that I use the most on my computer. MonitorES is a very small portable tool that turns off your monitor, pauses your media playback and sets your IM status to away in response to one single action – locking the computer. Next time you hit that Windows+L combination, let MonitorES do its magic.

MonitorES

10. On Screen Volume Control Indicator For Windows

In the absence of a sound card- or device-associated on-screen volume indicator, 3RVX is the perfect replacement, adding not only on-screen volume control indicator, but also binds hotkeys to take full control of it.

Volume Control Indicator

3RVX

11. Clean Up Windows Desktop With Zum

A great application launcher combining ease of use, artistic design and minimalist features, Zum is a must-have if you want to keep your Windows desktop clutter-free. You won’t need any application shortcut on your desktop ever again once you start using Zum.

zum desktop

Zum

12. Show Thumbnail Preview Of ZIP & RAR Image Archives

CBX Shell is a neat little shell extension that enables thumbnail preview of both ZIP and RAR image archives. Since Windows 7 does not natively support thumbnail previews for archived images, this functionality can greatly help those who are used to storing images in ZIP and RAR files.


preview of zip archive

CBX Shell

13. Disk Analysis Made Beautiful With Disk Space Fan

Though Windows comes with some disk analysis features, they are neither as thorough nor as beautiful as those provided by Disk Space Fan. This tool lays out the amount of space taken by each folder and files within is some really cool graphical forms.

Disk Space Fan

Disk Space Fan

14. Advance Tweak Windows 7 & Vista With Vispa

Tweaking Windows has never been easier. With the advanced tweaking capabilities of Vispa, you can choose what features and services you want to keep and what you want removed/disabled. Works with both Windows 7 and Windows Vista. Use with caution.

Vispa

15. Convert Any Media From Windows Explorer Context Menu

Media converters may be many, but ease-of-use and great features make Oxelon Media Converter take the cake. This portable tool supports Windows Explorer context-menu integration, allowing quick conversions, and its encoding utility supports multi-threaded processing, making it really fast.

explorer integration

Oxelon Media Converter

16. ClipGrab: Desktop Video Downloader

ClipGrab is one of the most convenient video downloading freeware. The ease-of-use, combined with simple and highly interactive features make this tool a must-have for video buffs. Sits in your system tray and automatically notifies when a video is available for download.

Clipgrab

ClipGrab

17. Image Resizer Powertoy Clone For Windows 7/Vista

Building on the famous Windows XP Image Resizer Powertoy, this clone extends support to non-XP and 64-bit versions of Windows. It gets integrated in Windows’ right-click context menu and allows quick resizing of an image.

resize photos

Image Resizer Powertoy Clone

18. Repair Broken Windows 7 User Profile Association

Since Windows XP, broken Windows user profile associations have been a nuisance for users. ReProfiler is a simple tool that fixes these links, working with just the relevant user account and associated profile. Provide the required data and let the software fix everything for you.

ReProfiler

ReProfiler

19. Add MKV Support In Windows 7

DivX Tech Preview is an interesting add-in that provides both Windows Media Player and Windows Media Center the ability to play MKV format files. Pretty useful if you don’t want to get caught up in a mix of media players and want a one-stop solution for all your video playback needs.

DivX Tech Preview

20. Automatically Mute Speakers On Lock

Often lock your computer and don’t want you coworkers to be disturbed by the sounds of incoming popup notifications? Or don’t want to leave some awesome track blaring in your headphones as you’re away from the computer? Use Mute On Lock, which mutes your system automatically as soon as you lock it down.

Mute Speakers On Lock

Mute On Lock

21. Raw Image Viewer – Add Raw Image Support To Windows 7

While Windows comes with a Windows Imaging Component which supports a variety of formats, it still lacks support for raw image formats. FastPictureViewer WIC Codec Pack answers the call by adding imaging codecs for both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows.

FastPictureViewer WIC Codec Pack

22. Integrate Hulu Desktop In Windows 7 Media Center

Hulu Desktop Integration is one utility that integrates Hulu Desktop with Windows 7 Media Center, allowing users to have one-click switching between the two applications. Efficient and simple.

Hulu Desktop Windows 7 Media Center

Hulu Desktop Integration

You must have noticed that all popular tools have been excluded from the list. This is because we believe that most additions to Windows 7 are made by the small tools. A high 10 points for those who knew at-least 5 tools before coming across them in this post.

You think we missed a tool? Feel free to recommend your favorite freeware in the comments.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/khizer.farooq Khizer Hayat Farooq

    Oxelon Media Converter wins the race

  • http://fastforwardacademy.com/ enrolled agent

    VERY NICE POST! A lot of great apps indeed! I like 13 and 14 and 17 best… Are these free apps that comes on a Windows 7 install? Or do we still have to download them?

    • Nakodari

      Obviously these are 3rd party programs. Btw stop using Enrolled Agent as your name. We do not support spamming to promote your product.

  • http://anarm.net/blog/ Anarm

    Oxelon Media Converter.. interesting.. nice sharing.. 2 thumbs up for this post.. thanks

  • Season

    Truly appreciated this list…has made my life much easier with some of these programs.
    Especially liked the Raw Image Viewer and also the Preview of Rar/Zip Files.
    Excellent post!

  • techsexy

    The list is great! But in my opinion, you always find out better alternatives for free that were not generated by Raymond giant.

  • BuggyDE

    Great Apps. But windows 7 a revolution? Think not, more like regurgitation of ideas and designs that are at least 4-5 years old, but bringing them together in a more user friendly UI. What windows 7 offers is by no way new or a revolution.

    • Deadlines

      What you consider a regurgitation others consider a refinement. That being said Windows 7 is not something I would classify as a revolution either, but it certainly has several new features that make it Microsoft’s best consumer OS to date. The funny thing is, you’re probably the type thinks the iPad was/is a revolutionary game-changing device.

      P.S. The Autopatcher/Updater app should not have been on this list imho. Any mid to large-sized Microsoft network will already have either WSUS deployed to take care of this, or SCCM.

  • http://flickr.com/iblee leeleblanc

    great list; learned some good stuff here.

    Any suggestions on working with multiple domains- tips, tricks, software, etc…

  • Lulzmacher

    protip:
    almost all of these features are already in Windows 7.
    lol

  • Eric

    @Lulzmacher, they all are 3rd party apps so they don’t already come with Windows 7.

  • http://adam2200.wordpress.com/ Adam

    As a Mac user, the list is no use to me, but my 2 brothers use W7 and they’re going to love this list, it’s also going to help me when they come to me for advice and I can’t help them because I only know all the Mac apps.

  • Sameed

    Great list. Was looking for a good media converter. (#15) Thanks.
    Though does it work well with video editors? Many other universal media converters cough up corrupt files that make Premiere Pro/ AE/ Movie Maker crash.

  • Daniel

    Mac did it better, bitch!

  • Brett Widmann

    This is a great collection of apps! I cant wait to install some of these.

  • Faraz

    RSS Reader, Podcast, Twitter and Buzz client for Windows 7/Phone 7 http://feedbook.tk

  • Mathias Lorenzen

    Shapeshifter is also a cool tool to have for Windows 7.

    http://flamefusion.net/software/shapeshifter

  • Karthik Chandraraj

    I complied this from my personnal experience

    http://ckarthik17.blogspot.com/2009/01/must-have-freewares.html

  • Trix

    Uh, for patch deployment to multiple systems, there’s a little tool called WSUS.

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  • kleidverkauf

    it’s also going to help me when they come to me for advice and I can’t help them because I only know all the Mac apps.

  • iphoness

    Thanx for your energy, sustain the nice operate Excellent perform.

  • Ankit

    Enso is another cool tool for windows which makes your working with computer much easier than ever. Please check this article. http://goo.gl/612za and Try and download enso from http://humanized.com/enso/

    Please share your thoughts. Thanks.

  • make

    If you need an alternative operating system I guess Free Windows is a right solution. It runs rather fast and has free software. Web site http://free-windows.com

    • Pr0xY-f3wL

      Free huh? I didn’t free meant “free…just for $18″ :P

      Try lookin up da word in sum kidz’ dictionary before postin that link anywhere..plus…if u don’t like windowz…I’d ask u to try Linux…it’z wayyy better ;)

      Peace

  • Richard

    This site is really very useful.. Thank you to all….

  • lowell police apprentice

    I’m sorry but most of this stuff could crash a computer

  • Nadz_kja

    hello can anyone help me how to create a shortcut to desktop.i really cant make it , maybe my pc has not complete application

    • http://www.facebook.com/dodd65 Ron Dodd

      right click the icon or program you want moved, and create desktop shortcut, then rename it as you wish

  • kande sai krishna

    waste app

  • http://www.keydifference.com/ Linda Joseph

    Good apps list. It makes me easy to work with.Thanks for sharing.