freeware is spectacular and you should try these

i’ve been using some freeware, or at least free versions of software which can be purchased and thought i’d help spread the word on some pretty nice pieces of code.

notepad++ is a really great alternative to the traditional built-in windows notepad – at least from a developer standpoint. OOB, it provides color coding for different elements depending on the language the file is written in. it can also automatically detect what the files you open are written in. it does a really nice job of this in my limited experience and the color-coding alone makes it outshine regular notepad. it seems pretty quick and appears to have many plug-ins/extensions available.

daemon tools has been an extremely helpful tool for mounting disk images. we have an msdn subscription at work and trying out all of the new expression web programs has been much easier with daemon tools. no more burning cds/dvds just to install some software and then having to keep an old image around on a disk. it also helps with other “media” which can be found in iso or img format. overall, very easy to use and highly recommended for anyone needing to make use of a disk image without making a physical disk.

imgburn provides a tremendously simple interface to burn img/iso files to disk or vice versa. a very straightforward interface which basically prompts you to choose a to and from location – hard drive or removable media. only a few clicks and you are on your way to a bootable disk or img to use with the aforementioned daemon tools – or to burn later.

xplorer2 gives a nice tabbed interface to windows explorer. although i’ve only used the free version, which is fairly limited, i can only imagine how powerful the full version is. i particularly like the ability to have my local working copy and development box, or development and staging open in the same window in order to copy updated source from one to the other.

one more thing – it’s all well worth the price of admission – so give it a whirl.

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