Rundown of Must-Have Portable Apps

Julio Franco

TechSpot Editor
Staff member

redhat

TS Booster
Photopea.com \\ as alternative for gimp although it is web based.

JDownloaderPortable \\ download manager that search for link root so you dont need to move to several websites until you reach your download destination.

TEncoder Video Converter \\ capable converter
 
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Indigo5

TS Member
Why haven't I heard of WinMerge before. It would saved me a lot of time doing my coding assignments in college.
No mention of Notepad++ for text editing?
 

ShagnWagn

TS Evangelist
What? No portable file/drive restore app? This is the most critical portable app ever because you never want to install restore software onto a drive you are trying to recover...
 
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Markoni35

TS Maniac
1. Sublime Text Portable?? Hmmm.... nope. Visual Studio Code is the new standard among power users. Sublime is losing its customer base. Visual Studio Code is packed with options, easy on the eye, cross-platform and has a portable mode too.

2. What about a video converter, such as SuperSimple Video Converter?

3. No audio editor either? How about Audacity portable?

4. Don't forget Paint.NET portable photo editor.
 

Bullwinkle M

TS Addict
The only portable app you need for Windows is............wait for it.... WINDOWS

Why trust portable apps on some other compromised system when you have Windows to Go or a WinToUSB thumbdrive. With a full copy of Windows, ALL of your apps are portable (Photoshop / Premiere / Audition etc)

By the way.... Do you REALLY trust portable apps ?
Do you know who made them ? Do you ? I would only trust a copy of Firefox directly from MOZILLA
 
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arrowflash

TS Booster
I strongly disagree with Foxit Reader portable for pdf viewing! It used to be a good lightweight pdf viewer until v5.x, but nowadays it's a spyware-riddled piece of hugely bloated software almost as bad as Adobe Reader.

For a good portable and truly lightweight pdf viewer, use SumatraPDF or muPDF instead (for both the portable editions are supplied by the developer themselves).

Any suggestions for a good portable clipboard manager?
I've been using Ditto, both the portable and desktop version.
Ditto is pretty good. I can also recommend CopyQ, which I personally prefer over Ditto (CopyQ also has an official portable version).

Winamp portable? why not foobar2000?
For a portable music player Audacious is probably a better option than both of these, since it's fully GPL open source and you can choose between a Winamp-style interface (it's even fully compatible with classic Winamp skins), or a foobar2000-style interface.

By the way.... Do you REALLY trust portable apps ?
Do you know who made them ? Do you ? I would only trust a copy of Firefox directly from MOZILLA
Most portable versions of free apps are created by the original developer and available as an alternate download on the program's downloads page from the official site (sometimes it will be available as "portable", other times all you have to do is download the .zip version instead of the setup.exe to get the portable version).

Of course, you have a point for those portable versions that are created by third parties such as portable Firefox / Chrome, but since you made a generalization I thought I should point that out.
 

arrowflash

TS Booster
Don't forget Total Commander for a file manager.
Total Commander is shareware, 37 Euro for the full version... there are quite a few fully freeware and open source file managers for Windows that I personally consider even better than Total Commander. Take a look at MultiCommander, FreeCommander and Explorer++.
 

mbk34

TS Member
I'll admit I don't understand the use case for portable apps on a USB stick but shouldn't there be an app on here for backing up files to the cloud? The thought of doing real work on something I could lose through a hole in my pocket just seems worrying to me.
 

Indigo5

TS Member
I strongly disagree with Foxit Reader portable for pdf viewing! It used to be a good lightweight pdf viewer until v5.x, but nowadays it's a spyware-riddled piece of hugely bloated software almost as bad as Adobe Reader.

For a good portable and truly lightweight pdf viewer, use SumatraPDF or muPDF instead (for both the portable editions are supplied by the developer themselves).
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I like SumatraPDF too. Fast and lightweight. Wish it had annotation and highlighting feature, but that would add bloats to the software.
I can also recommend CopyQ, which I personally prefer over Ditto (CopyQ also has an official portable version).
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CopyQ looks great. I'll give it a try. Thanks for the recommendation!
 

H3llion

TechSpot Paladin
1. Sublime Text Portable?? Hmmm.... nope. Visual Studio Code is the new standard among power users. Sublime is losing its customer base. Visual Studio Code is packed with options, easy on the eye, cross-platform and has a portable mode too.

2. What about a video converter, such as SuperSimple Video Converter?

3. No audio editor either? How about Audacity portable?

4. Don't forget Paint.NET portable photo editor.
Yeah VS Code > All
However video converter? Handbreak, nothing else.
 

wiak

TS Enthusiast
HWINFO64 from https://www.hwinfo.com/download/
(cant live without it if you need info about a computer)

HD Sentinel Professional from https://www.hdsentinel.com
(lets you find sector errors and monitor your hard drives, they have a free dos/linux version)

Everything Portable from https://www.voidtools.com
(superior search compared to the horrible windows search)

ViDupe + FFMPEG from https://github.com/kristiankoskimaki/vidupe / https://ffmpeg.org
(find duplicate video files and as a bonus a swish army knife of a media program)