I am not just a Linux enthusiast, I also happen to use Windows quite often. In fact, Windows is my primary desktop from which I connect to all the other boxes and do my work on. During the years of Windows usage, I have accumulated a list of must-have Windows programs that I wouldn’t be able to work without. Some of them are commercial, some are freeware, but that doesn’t matter. What matters is how productive you are with your setup. If you’re really productive on Linux with your own set of tools, it’s perfectly fine and you have done a great job of finding the best tools of trade.
1. Total Commander.I can’t imagine working on a computer without Total Commander. Absolutely must-have software. Total Commander is what separates boys from men. Total Commander is probably the #1 reason why I don’t use other operating system on my desktop. Tabs, a great GUI interface and customize-everything-configuration make it superior to all the other file managers. If I switch the desktop OS, I’ll have to write my own clone of Total Commander or I wouldn’t be able to work with the computer. Total commander is shareware.
2. TrueCrypt.Because you don’t want anyone to know what you store on your disks. TrueCrypt the best disk encryption software for Windows. TrueCrypt is freeware.
3. SecureCRT and Putty.SecureCRT is the SSH client to use. Again, the primary reason I use it is because it has tab support. Putty comes second as it doesn’t have tabs. SecureCRT is shareware. Putty is freeware.
4. WinSCP.Forget all your FTP clients. FTP is dead and unsecure. I use WinSCP to send all my files over a secure connection. WinSCP is freeware.
5. Cygwin.Since Windows has never had a usable shell, the only way to get one is to run a local ssh server via Cygwin and connect to localhost via SecureCRT. This way you get the best possible shell. Cygwin is freeware.
6. VMWare Workstation.I have been using VMWare Workstation since 2004 and have never had a single problem. It’s the best virtualization software ever written and nothing comes close. VMWare Workstation is shareware.
7. Synergy.Synergy allows you to share your mouse and keyboard via network with other computers (no need for a KVM switch). It just works. Synergy is freeware.
8. Beyond compare.The greatest visual diff tool ever written. Period. Beyond compare is shareware.
9. Tclock2.Tclock2 is freeware that allows you to customize the windows clock in the systray. I set it to