Glenn's Free Utility Software

Label/Envelope printing

Label printer is a slow program for printing labels, but it has all the features I want in a label printing program. Here's the list:
  • Input from the command line and/or a simple TSV (Tab Separated Values) file.
  • Can be configured to any label size and any label form, even weird ones like the rectangular labels found on CD label sheets of various brands.
  • Automatically figures out a font size that will fill the label with the given text.
  • Can start with any label on the sheet.
  • Handles envelopes as well as label sheets.
It has some prerequisites: first install Python 3.1+, ImageMagick, Visual C 2008 redistributable runtimes, and IrfanView.
Bundled with order maker below.
CD Label printing

CD label printer is a program for printing CD labels, but it has all the features I want in a label printing program. Here's the list:
  • Standard graphics format input files: 750x750 dpi .jpg files (150dpi)
  • Can be configured to any label size and any label form.
It has some prerequisites: first install Python 3.1+, ImageMagick, Visual C 2008 redistributable runtimes, and IrfanView.

An alternate technique using only IrfanView is described here.
Bundled with order maker below.
Order Maker

Order Maker is an order processing program.
For more information, see the Order Maker home page
File Search

Agent Ransack is a program that can search for files by name or content. Sound like Windows search? It is that, and more. It solves the problems with the deficient search facility on Windows XP, which cannot be convinced to search binary files for text strings -- preventing you for example from finding a font file by font name (instead of file name). It can also search for regular expressions (like the *nix grep utility) Here is a more complete description of the deficiency of the Windows XP search facility.
Agent Ransack home page

Agent Ransack direct download
Detect duplicate files

dupdetect.exe is a program that will search selected directories for duplicate files.

During phase one, files are considered duplicates if they have the same size and the same MD5 checksum. Duplicates may be autodeleted if they are found in another set of selected directories. The autodeletion set can be augmented as processing continues.

During phase two, files are considered duplicate if they have the same filename but are in different directories. You should be very cautious with phase two, often such files are variations of the same file, sometimes they are completely independent files. You may or may not want to delete such files, or manually merge various copies, etc.
dupdetect.exe direct download
7-Zip archiver

In trying to ZIP a bunch of files to help a friend backup his laptop's D: partition, it took me 3 tries to find an archiver that could pack 4GB of data when there was only 1.7GB free space available for the %TEMP% directory! Placing a temporary file on any drive except the drive for which the target archive is specified requires an additional file copy after the compression, which is silly. The first two, both of which failed silently when they ran out of %TEMP% space, were WinZip (already installed on my friend's machine) and PowerArchiver (see below). 7-zip, my third attempt, placed the temp file on the target drive, and worked great!

7-Zip is clearly the leader in compression ratio, and supports more formats, including its namesake 7z compression, which is more effective than ZIP. I've been using 7z compression when I make self-extracting archives, as that doesn't require others to install yet another program, but gets the benefits of the higher packing ratio. I've also been using it for my own personal archives.
7-Zip home page

7-Zip sourceforge project page

Downloads are quickly found on either of the above pages.
PowerArchiver 6.11

The last non-commercial version of PowerArchiver is still a highly-functional bargain, and was my favorite compressor until I found 7-zip (see above).
Deals with many, many compression and archiving formats: .zip, .tar.gz, .arc, etc. Like WinZip, but without the nag screens. The commercial trial version is more like WinZip with the nag screens.

The associated SFXmaker (self-extracting archive maker) is highly functional and configurable. I haven't played much with the extra support stuff but it sounds interesting too.
PowerArchiver download

SFX maker download

SFX maker extra support download
Python programming language 3.x

Install, accepting all the defaults. I use Python for new scripts and utilities. web site
Note there is a "Quick Links (3.x)" section at the left, which has a direct link to the 3.x installer.
Perl programming language
(used for various older scripts)

Install, accepting all the defaults, except make sure the path it is installed on is "c:\perl"
ActiveState web site

direct Perl 5.8.0 download
Sumatra PDF Reader
Documentation for Sumatra is found here. It is smaller and faster than Adobe Reader. Surely something was left out, but I haven't noticed yet.
Download page
Email reformatting

Clippy works by reformatting stuff you put on the clipboard. So you copy stuff to the clipboard, choose a reformatting option by hitting a hot key or right-clicking a system tray icon, and choosing from a menu.

Handy for removing those extraneous ">" characters from email, as well as other reformatting.
Way Out There Software main page

Clippy download page
CD emulator

Have lots of hard disk space, and tired of swapping CDs around? The software/music/etc. on the CD won't install on the hard disk? Use a CD/DVD emulator to put the data on the hard disk, in a CD image file, complete with a drive letter for access.
DAEMON Tools home page

direct download
boot time information batch files

Use setbootinfo.cmd once per bootup, and then getbootinfo.cmd can be used to set environment variables that can ease the creation of startup scripts.

documentation and examples
download setbootinfo.cmd

download getbootinfo.cmd

Useful, free Transcription software for digital audio recordings of speech. Even I can use it, and my secretarial skills mostly belong to my wife.
Transcriber download page.

Pricelessware is another list of free software, if you are looking for some goodies not listed here.