What software is essential to install when buying a new PC in terms of security, navigation, communication, office suite or utilities? We tell you everything!
Leader on the market of web browsers, billions of extensions, more advanced multi-tabs management, a neat design, a Google account which allows you to connect to many inter-connected services and even use them. login credentials for other sites, Google Chrome has it all. But… Perfection always has a “but”, the confidentiality of Chrome is not its strong point with monitoring your browsing, even in private browsing, a little doubtful. To improve its image, Google has developed and has just put online in its new update, a malware detection function. Accessible in Windows and Mac, in the advanced settings of the web browser, you have a new function to detect and clean up unwanted ads and pop-ups. Note also the new Chrome Remote Desktop extension, which allows you to control a PC remotely with a simple access code. No need for an external solution like Teamviewer.
Number 2 in web browsers and developed by the Mozilla foundation, a non-profit organization, Firefox offers a more intuitive user experience with the new ergonomic interface of Quantum, a redesigned and updated design. Different themes are available on the Mozilla site to customize the appearance of your browser as well as a large catalog of extensions to enhance its basic functionality. Privacy is also part of the Mozilla Foundation’s DNA, with advanced tracking protection features, and more private browsing. The latest major update also improves the speed of loading and scrolling which were previously the weak points of this free web browser.
Windows Defender Security Center
Included by default in the operating system, Windows Defender is Windows 10’s security and firewall tool. Real-time protection against viruses, ransomware and malware are the basis of this suite. already integrated into your operating system. Nothing to install, everything is already integrated and configured by default. In addition to regular updates and a proactive heuristic and behavioral defense, Windows Defender remains completely invisible to the user. It also performs performance and integrity analyzes of the device and issues an integrity report informing you of storage capacity, device drivers, In addition, it is possible to install an extension on Chrome, Windows Defender Browser for optimal security of your browsing.
To top it off, the Windows Defender security center has a parental control system and an automatic restart module for updates, taking into account your hours of activity, which you will have previously informed.
The most popular free antivirus with its 400 million users, awarded “Product of the year 2018” (by the independent laboratory AV-Comparatives), Avast Anti-virus has a simple and intuitive interface, with a clean design facilitating the user experience. Its high-performance free version offers, among other things, protection of your computer in real time, protection of your Wi-Fi network, password manager, application update function, cleaning and optimization system system. The premium version and therefore paid, offers in addition to protect your webcam and your files against ransomware, a software update system to avoid security breaches of obsolete versions. It also has a file shredder to permanently delete your personal data.
Among the latest innovations, we can mention the improvement of the heuristic and behavioral analysis engine, as well as the Smart Scan analysis which detects security vulnerabilities, a favorite playground for malware. As a bonus, Avast Anti-virus has just been certified for 100% protection against Zero Day threats by AVTest. ZeroDay vulnerabilities are vulnerabilities, newly discovered security vulnerabilities whose workarounds have not yet been found.
Formerly Malwarebytes Anti-Malware, Malwarebytes offers, in a paid version, an anti-virus suite with several layers of protection. The free version of this software, originally developed for malware, has grown over the years and now has a powerful and faster scanning engine against most viruses and ransomware. With a sleek and simple to use interface, the software offers a complete and thorough analysis of your computer. However, it does not have proactive real-time protection. Everything is scrutinized during the analysis that you can plan very easily: files, registry, software, system…
We also appreciate the speed of installation and the configuration of the software, compared to complete security suites but a little painful to configure.
When you buy a new PC, you often get pre-installed software, anti-virus partnerships, trial versions that you don’t need. In short, unwanted software that takes up space and resources, and that, in particular, slows down the boot of your PC. You can certainly do it manually but why bother when there is a small software that will do it for you, with a simple click of the mouse. PC Decrapifier is free, practical and useful for this purpose.
It analyzes your PC, classifies the programs according to 3 categories: Recommended, Questionable and Everything Else. These lists are recommendations determined by the users of the program, but you have the option of uninstalling anything that suits you. And if you do something stupid and uninstall a program essential to the functioning of your PC, PC Decrapifier ticks by default, the option to create a restore point.
Free, Format Factory is a software for converting almost all types of files. It differs from the others by its support for audio, video or image files which it can convert into the most common formats, even formats compatible with your Apple or Android smartphones. Less and less useful nowadays, but appreciable in certain cases, it also makes it possible to rip DVD and CD. It is its ease of use and its large number of conversion formats that make it a software to install in its toolkit for Windows.
Is it still necessary to present LibreOffice? The free and open source office suite whose features and clear and intuitive interface make it a serious alternative to its paid counterpart Microsoft Office. Spreadsheet, word processor, presentation, drawing, and database are the modules available today. Born and developed by its community, LibreOffice relies on its thousands of contributors to evolve, help each other, collaborate, improve and enrich its tools. We also appreciate the support for many document formats, including Microsoft Office.
Adobe Acrobat Reader DC
To read your PDF documents, Adobe Acrobat Reader DC is the market leader and opens absolutely all types of PDF files. You will be able to view, print, sign and annotate your PDFs. But for allergy sufferers from big companies, other alternatives like Foxit Reader or Sumatra PDF work perfectly, and have the advantage of being less resource-hungry and faster. The paid version of Adobe Acrobat Reader allows you to modify, convert and comment on PDFs if necessary.
VoIP communication software, Skype installs easily and quickly on your computer, tablet, smartphone, Xbox and now on Alexa, the Amazon Echo device (subject to subscription).
For major devices, Skype is free as long as you communicate with someone who has their own Skype account. For national or international calls on fixed or mobile phones, as well as sending SMS, it will cost you a few cents of euros per minute and / or a subscription. For basic functionality, Skype allows you to make video or voice calls only, to two or more. It allows you to send files, but also to share your screen,
Very simple to handle, your communication can also be established by instant messaging.
In addition to private conversations which can be encrypted, the software offers a tool for recording calls, displaying subtitles of the current conversation or even translation (in Beta version).
With 25 million users, Thunderbird is the essential open source email client to install on your new PC. It allows you to write and send your emails in a few clicks, but also to easily manage your address book and automatically sort your emails. This free messaging software developed and distributed by the Mozilla foundation also benefits from Firefox Quantum and its new Photon design. Simple, practical and quicker to configure thanks to the new account creation wizard, all you have to do is enter your name, email address and password and Thunderbird will retrieve your IMAP, SMTP and SSL / TLS settings from your accounts. If the edition of Templates for new messages was already available in previous versions, the editor has been improved in the latest update, with the possibility of retrieving and saving a message as a template. Customizable with many themes and a rich and complete catalog of extensions, you can add interesting functionalities such as an agenda, a deferred message sending tool, multilingual dictionaries, protection or instant messaging extensions… In short , enough to make it an essential everyday working tool. We just regret that it is not yet available for smartphones.
VLC Media Player
Available on all digital systems, VLC Media Player is a multimedia player supporting most audio and video formats, media codecs, DVDs, CDs, VCDs, WebTVs and the list goes on. With a large community of contributors, VLC Media Player also offers a large catalog of extensions and themes, for those who wish to customize its functionality and appearance. With its new version “Vetinari”, VLC now supports 360 video, 3D sound and HDR (High Dynamic Range) content which improves the depth of colors and the intensity of contrasts. This update also provides the ability to stream video to your TV via Chromecast, Google’s multimedia box. Your PC and VLC will act as a player, while Chromecast will broadcast it on your TV, provided that all the elements are on the same wi-fi network.
Reference image processing software for graphic design professionals, Adobe Photoshop offers endless creative possibilities ranging from small editing to the total transformation of your image. The management of masks and layers, ergonomics and tool management are much more successful than its free competitors, with a little simpler handling. Among the new features that we were eagerly awaiting, the command to cancel the last action (Ctrl + Z) improves with multiple rollbacks. No need to do the Ctrl + Alt + Z combination to cancel several actions. Automatic validation and locking of the workspace are also significant new features to discover in the latest update. On the other hand, if you just want to crop and simply add a few filters to your photo, prefer Paint.net or Photofiltre for lighter jobs.