💻 An awesome & curated list of best applications and tools for Windows.
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awesome windows

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An awesome & curated list of best applications and tools for Windows.

This Awesome Repository is highly inspired from ichait's Awesome osx. Special thanks to egeerardyn.

Items marked with Open-Source Software are open-source software. Items marked with Freeware are free.

table of contents

Applications

Audio

  • AIMP - 32 bit audio processing and multi-format playback. Freeware
  • Audacity - Free, open source, cross-platform software for recording and editing sounds. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • AudioNodes - Modular audio production suite with multi-track audio mixing, audio effects, parameter automation, MIDI editing, synthesis, cloud production, and more. Freeware
  • CDex - CD Ripper (French site, English program). Freeware
  • Dopamine - An audio player which tries to make organizing and listening to music as simple and pretty as possible. Freeware
  • K-Lite Codecs - Collection of DirectShow filters, VFW/ACM codecs, and tools. Freeware
  • Qtractor - An Audio/MIDI multi-track sequencer. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Reaper - Lightweight application with deep feature set and $60 for individual, non-profit, or small business use.
  • Winamp - Music player capable of playing MP3s, MP2s, WAVs, VOCs and MIDI files. Freeware
  • Mixxx - Free DJ software that gives you everything you need to perform live mixes, veritable alternative to Traktor.Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Musicbee - Like iTunes but better than iTunes.
  • MusicBrainz Picard - Picard is a cross-platform music tagger that looks up and rewrite metadata tags. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • VLC - Free media player, works pretty well. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Foobar2000 - Free audio player for Windows, supports a wide range of audio formats and has a lot of cool features. Freeware
  • Exact Audio Copy - Transfer files from your CDs to your PC in almost every format.Comes with some pretty nifty features too.
  • Kodi - Free and Open Source home theatre software. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Resonic - Fast and free audio player.

Chat Clients

  • Hexchat - IRC client based on XChat Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Waow - Awesome WhatsApp Web Client to deliver you the best WhatsApp experience. Freeware
  • LimeChat - Instant messaging application. Freeware
  • Caprine - An elegant Facebook Messenger desktop app. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • mIRC - An Internet Relay Chat (IRC) client.
  • Telegram - A messaging app with a focus on speed and security, it’s super fast, simple and free. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Quassel - Quassel IRC is a modern, cross-platform, distributed IRC client. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Discord - Discord is a free voice and text chat client for gamers and non-gamers alike. You can use it from your browser and it's available on iOS, Android, Windows, Mac, and Linux. Freeware
  • Riot - A decentralised encrypted comms app for the Matrix.org ecosystem. Open-Source Software Freeware

Compression

  • 7-Zip - Open source Windows utility for manipulating archives. Formats 7z, ZIP, GZIP, BZIP2 and TAR are supported fully, other formats can be unpacked. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Bandizip - A lightweight, fast and free All-In-One Zip Archiver. Freeware
  • PeaZip - Archiver and file compressor. Extract 7Z CAB ISO RAR TAR ZIP archive files. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Riot - Compress images either by file size or by many other image attributes. Freeware
  • WinRAR - A powerful archive manager. It can backup your data and reduce the size of email attachments, decompress RAR, ZIP and other files.

Customization

  • 7+ Taskbar Tweaker - Allows to customize and extend Windows taskbar functionality with various productivity enhancements. Freeware
  • Classic Start - Use Start Menu and Explorer like it's 2000. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Clover - Add multi-tab functionality to Windows Explorer. Freeware
  • EarTrumpet - Per application volume control from the system tray. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Rainmeter - Rainmeter allows you to display customizable skins on your desktop, from hardware usage meters to fully functional audio visualizers. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • TranslucentTB - Make your Windows task bar transparent. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • QTTabBar - Extends Explorer by tabs and extra folder views. Freeware
  • Windows 10 Login Background Changer - Lets you change the Windows 10 login screen background. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • ZBar - If you use multiple monitors, it lets you display a separate taskbar on each monitor.

Data Recovery

  • Data Rescue - Comprehensive and professional Hard drive recovery software that can recover your photos, videos, documents.
  • Ontrach EasyRecovery - Has filtering tools to help sort the large amount of data the software can recover.
  • Stellar Phoenix Windows Data Recovery - Remote recovery option to recover data from another computer over a network.
  • PartitionGuru|Eassos Recovery - Data recovery with partition recovery. Freeware
  • Recuva - Recover your deleted files quickly and easily.
  • TestDisk - Powerful free data recovery software primarily designed to help recover lost partitions and/or make non-booting disks bootable again.

Developer Tools

  • Addict - Drop-in REST API for Active Directory.
  • DB Browser for SQLite - High quality, visual, open source tool to create, design, and edit database files compatible with SQLite Open-Source Software
  • HeidiSQL - Powerful and easy client for MySQL, MariaDB, Microsoft SQL Server and PostgreSQL.
  • Fiddler - Web debugging proxy.
  • FileZilla - FTP, FTPS and SFTP client. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Git Extensions - A powerful and easy to use UI for Git. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • GitHub Desktop - GitHub Desktop is an open source Electron-based GitHub app. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • GitKraken - A beautiful, cross-platform Git client. Freeware
  • I'm Only Resting -A feature-rich WinForms-based HTTP client Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Insomnia - A modern REST client with a beautiful interface. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Keylord Cross-platform GUI client for Redis, LevelDB and Memcached key-value databases.
  • Mamp - Local server environment. Freeware
  • Meld - A visual diff and merge tool. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Open Server - Portable server platform and software environment (like MAMP, XAMPP, WAMP and very user friendly). Freeware
  • Pixie - A simple color picker for developers.
  • pngquant - Apply lossy compression on PNG files with or wi
  • PostgreSQL Database - A comprehensive list of tools.
  • Postman - REST client with intuitive user interface to send requests, save responses, add tests, and create workflows.
  • Process Explorer - A powerful task manager. Freeware
  • Process Hacker - Excellent full blown task manager.
  • RazorSQL - A GUI for managing SQLite databases which requires major work.
  • Redis Desktop Manager Cross-platform open source Redis DB management tool.
  • Robo 3T - A lightweight GUI for MongoDB enthusiasts.
  • SourceTree - A free Git & Mercurial client.
  • Sql Wave - A MySQL database manager.
  • SSLyog - A powerful MySQL administration tool
  • TortoiseGit - Git client with full shell integration. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • TortoiseSVN - Subversion client with full shell integration. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Vagrant - A tool for building and managing virtual machines. Open-Source Software
  • Velocity - Offline API Documentation Tool. (like Dash for macOS)
  • Visual Studio - Ultimate Microsoft Developer Tool.
  • Visual Studio Code - Lightweight Source Code Editor.
  • Wamp - Web development environment.
  • WinSCP - Free open source SFTP, FTP, WebDAV and SCP client. Freeware
  • Wireshark - A network protocol analyzer. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • WMI Explorer - Provides the ability to browse and view WMI namespaces/classes/instances/properties in a single pane of view. Open-Source Software
  • Xampp - Apache driven web development environment. Freeware
  • Xftp 5 - Flexible and lightweight SFTP/FTP client. Freeware
  • Zsh - A powerful command line shell. Open-Source Software Freeware

Documents

  • FreeOffice - FreeOffice is a complete office suite with a word processor, a spreadsheet application and a presentation program – all compatible with their counterparts in Microsoft Office. Freeware
  • LibreOffice - Open source office suite. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Microsoft Office - Microsoft's own productivity suite.
  • OnlyOffice - The most complete and feature-rich office and productivity suite. Freeware
  • OpenOffice - Software suite for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, graphics, databases and more. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • NitroPDF - The best PDF Reader you'll ever get.
  • Sumatra PDF - PDF, ePub, MOBI, CHM, XPS, DjVu, CBZ, CBR reader. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • WPS Office - The perfect free office software Freeware

E-Book Utilities

  • Bookviser - Awesome application for Windows 8 devices to read eBooks in a simple way. Freeware
  • Calibre - Powerful software for e-book management and conversion. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • kobo - Incredibly ugly but powerful software for ebook management and conversion. Freeware

Email

  • MailBird - IMAP and POP3 email client, featuring customization, complete touch support and multiple language support.
  • Thunderbird - Email client with minimalistic design. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Mailspring - A fast and maintained fork of Nylas Mail, built on modern web technologies. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Nylas Mail - An extensible desktop mail app built on the modern web. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Postbox - The Power Email App

Games

  • 0 A.D. - A free, open-source real-time strategy game of ancient warfare. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Warsow - Free & fast-paced FPS game for Windows. Freeware
  • Awesome Games - List of games hosted on Github. Freeware
  • Freeciv - A Free and Open Source empire-building strategy game inspired by the history of human civilization. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • GOG Galaxy - Steam-like DRM-free game platform.
  • LuaStudio - Free game development tool/engine. Create games and other graphic focused apps on Windows using Lua/LuaJIT programming language. Export them to many platforms including iOS, Android and Mac.
  • Unity - Free game engine. Easy to pick up and use with a number of tutorials.
  • Unreal Engine - Another free game engine. Lots of documentation and easier to pick up, but you pay 5% royalties to Unreal when you make money from UE-based games.
  • Steam - Largest online video game retailer. Desktop app allows you to organise your library of games and play them at any time. But you already knew that.
  • Origin - Like Steam, but for EA.
  • Itch.io - Install, update and play indie games. Open-Source Software Freeware

Graphics

  • Blender - Fully-featured extensible cross-platform 3D content suite. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Gimp - Open source image editor. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Inkscape - Inkscape is a professional vector graphics editor for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Krita - Krita is a professional FREE and open source painting program. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • MapTiler - MapTiler generates zoomable raster maps from images in user-defined coordinate system. Freeware
  • Paint.net - how can you live without paint.net? Freeware

Text Editors

  • Atom - A hackable text editor for the 21st Century. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Brackets - A modern, open source text editor that understands web design. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • GVim - (G)Vim is a highly configurable text editor built to enable efficient text editing. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Light Table - A customizable editor with instant feedback and showing data values flow through your code. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Neovim - literally the future of vim Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Notepad++ - A source code editor which supports several programming languages. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Notepad2 - Tiny and fast Notepad replacement with many useful features. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Oni - Modern Modal Editing - powered by Neovim Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Sublime Text 3 - The sophisticated text editor.
  • Visual Studio Code - Build and debug modern web and cloud applications. Open-Source Software Freeware

IDEs

  • Android Studio - The official IDE for Android based on the IntelliJ platform. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • AppCode - Smart IDE for iOS/macOS development that natively supports Objective-C, Swift, C and C++.
  • CLion - Smart cross-platform IDE for C/C++ that uses CMake as a build system.
  • Eclipse - A powerful IDE. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • IntelliJ IDEA - A modern Java IDE with free community edition. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • NetBeans IDE - A free and open-source IDE. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • PhpStorm - Lightning-smart PHP IDE with major frameworks support.
  • PyCharm - Python IDE for professional developers with free community edition. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Rider - A cross-platform .NET/Mono IDE.
  • RubyMine - An intelligent Ruby IDE that supports many modern frameworks.
  • Visual Studio - Microsofts official IDE. Supports a multitude of languages via plugins.
  • WebStorm - A smart JavaScript IDE that uses the full power of the modern JavaScript ecosystem.

Online Storage

  • Box - Ability to sync more than 100,000 files and supporting both special characters in file names and file paths longer than 256 characters.
  • Dropbox -Simple, elegant and versatile (PC, Macs, Android...) cloud storage solution.
  • Google Drive - Cloud storage solution deeply integrated in the Google ecosystem.
  • Hubic - Cloud storage for Windows, Linux, MacOsx, iOs & Android
  • OneDrive - Best cloud storage solution for Windows users.
  • Mega - Encrypted file storage.
  • Mozy

Backup

  • Arq - Backs up your files to your own cloud account (Amazon Cloud Drive, AWS, Dropbox, Google Drive, Google Cloud Storage, OneDrive, and SFTP).
  • Bvckup 2 - Light, versatile data replication software.
  • Duplicati - Free backup software to store encrypted backups online For Windows, macOS and Linux.Open-Source Software Freeware

Productivity

  • AutoHotkey - The ultimate automation scripting language for Windows. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Chocolatey - A package manager for Windows.
  • Cold Turkey - The only blocker for distracting websites that actually works. (even doesn't let you uninstall it when blocking is active).
  • CommandTrayHost - A Command Line program monitor systray for Windows. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Ditto - Clipboard manager.
  • Easy Window Switcher - Switch between application instances, fast.
  • Everything - The fastest file/folder search tool by name.
  • f.lux - Automatically adjust your computer screen to match lighting. Freeware
  • Inkdrop - The note-taking app for Markdown lovers.
  • Launchy - The Open Source Keystroke Launcher. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Listary - Keep files at your fingertips. An unique search utility.
  • MultiCommander - File Manager for Professionals. Freeware
  • Ninite - The easiest, fastest way to update or install software. Freeware
  • One Commander - File manager featuring miller columns and dual-pane views. Freeware
  • Scoop - A command-line installer for Windows. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Total Commander - The best file manager for Windows.
  • Simplenote - Simple cross-platform note taking app with cloud-based syncing. Freeware
  • WordWeb - A very good English dictionary for windows. Freeware
  • Wox - An effective launcher for windows. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • KatMouse - Utility that enables "universal scrolling" in Windows: scrolling does not need the window to be active/clicked first (i.e. how it works in macOS and Linux) Freeware
  • Keypirinha - A fast launcher for keyboard ninjas on Windows. You can think of Keypirinha as an alternative to Launchy and a cousin of Alfred. Freeware
  • Taskade - Smart task lists with real-time cross-platform syncing and team collaboration. Freeware

Terminal

  • Babun - Alternative Windows shell based on Cygwin. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Cmder - Console emulator package.
  • ConEmu - Customizable terminal with tabs, splits, quake-style and more.
  • ConsoleZ - Modified version of Console 2 for a better experience and a better visual rendering.
  • Hyper - A terminal built on web technologies. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • MobaXterm - Xserver and tabbed SSH client.
  • mRemoteNG - The next generation of mRemote, open source, tabbed, multi-protocol, remote connections manager. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • MTPuTTY - Multi-Tabbed PuTTY.
  • Putty - SSH and telnet client.
  • Kitty - advanced Putty (SSH and telnet client).
  • Terminus - modern, highly configurable terminal app based on web technologies. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • ColorTool - Set custom color schemes for the Windows Console with support for iTerm color schemes.

Utilities

  • A-Z of Windows Terminal Commands
  • Carnac - The easiest way to record keystrokes during any screen recording.
  • CleanMyPC - A clean computer in no time.
  • CPU-Z - A free all-in-one CPU monitoring tool. Freeware
  • Ext2Fsd - Open source ext3/4 file system driver for Windows.Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Far - File and Archive manager. Clone of the Norton Commander. Open-Source Software
  • Fraps- Video game capture screen recorder that can be used with all games using DirectX or OpenGL technology.
  • FreeFileSync - An easy backup solution for files and folders, It supports mirroring/two way sync/update between source and destination.
  • Glary Utilities - Provides many more advanced features which are non existent in ccleaner.
  • Greenshot - Take and crop screenshots directly on the screen. Open-Source Software
  • GPU-Z - A free all-in-one GPU monitoring tool. Freeware
  • HTTrack- Offline browser utility, allowing you to download a website from the Internet to a local directory. Open-Source Software
  • HWMonitor - A hardware monitoring program that reads PC systems main health sensors : voltages, temperatures, fans speed.
  • IrfanView - A very fast, small, compact and innovative graphic viewer for Windows.
  • LICEcap - Animated screen captures and save them directly to .GIF
  • LightBulb - Reduces eyestrain by adjusting gamma based on the current time
  • Link Shell Extension - Create symlinks from Explorer.
  • rimraf - A deep deletion module for node. Help to delete files and folders with very long paths
  • PowerPlanSwitcher - Provides a quick UI for switching power schemas & automatic switch on AC-plug-in on Windows10. Open-Source Software
  • qBittorrent - Free and reliable P2P Bittorrent client.
  • Rufus - Create bootable USB drives the easy way.
  • SDelete - A command line utility that can securely delete a file, or clean the slack space.
  • SpaceMonger - A graphical utility to display folders and files in blocks relative to their disk usage.
  • Speccy -Detailed statistics on every piece of hardware in your computer.
  • ShareX- Lets you take screenshots or screencasts of any selected area with a single key. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Sysinternals Suite - Tool suite by Mark Russinovich that provides access to Windows internals for troubleshooting: processes, physical ports, disk activity etc.
  • Unlocker - Unlock files Windows won't let you delete
  • Waltr - Transfer any movie or music file to your iPhone w/o iTunes.
  • WinDirStat - It is a disk usage statistics viewer and cleanup too.
  • Windows 10 Login Screen Changer - Changes the Windows 10 Login Screen Background. Open-Source Software
  • winreg-cli - Command line tool with a fluent API for modifying Windows registry. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • ZoomIt - It is a screen zoom and annotation tool for technical presentations. It runs unobtrusively in the tray and activates with customizable hotkeys to zoom in on an area of the screen, move around while zoomed, and draw on the zoomed image.

Video

  • K-Lite Codecs - Collection of DirectShow filters, VFW/ACM codecs, and tools.
  • mpv - Media player. Open-Source Software
  • HandBrake - High performance video encoding and conversion tools with a nice GUI. Open-Source Software
  • VLC - Multimedia player and framework that plays DVDs, Audio CDs, VCDs, and various streaming protocols. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • ScreenToGif - ScreenToGif allows you to record a selected area of your screen and save it as a gif or video. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • PotPlayer - Multimedia player with a wide collection of codecs which also offers extensive configuration options for users.
  • SMPlayer - Multimedia player that can save different preferences for any single video. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Open Broadcaster Software - Free and open source software for video recording and live streaming. Open-Source Software

Setup

Windows 10 Setup

Windows 8.1 Setup

Security

  • Acrylic DNS Proxy - A local DNS proxy which caches the responses coming from your DNS servers and helps you fight unwanted ads through a custom HOSTS file. Freeware
  • AdwCleaner - Free removal tool for adware, PUP/LPI, Toolbars and Hijacker. Freeware
  • Bitdefender - Best outright protection against malware.
  • Cryptomator - Free client-side encryption for your cloud files. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • ENCRYPTO - Encrypt your files in an elegant way. Freeware
  • GlassWire - Network security monitoring tool and analyzer that visualizes your network activity.
  • IIS Crypto - A utility for configuring encryption protocols, cyphers, hashing methods, and key exchanges for Windows components (eg TLS/AES/SHA for Remote Desktop)
  • KeePass - Free, open-source, easy-to-use password manager. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • SpyBot - Search and destroy malware, spyware and viruses. Freeware
  • System Explorer - An enhanced task manager with support for monitoring and modifying system processes, start-up programs, system services, drivers, shell extensions, and more.
  • UnChecky - automatically unchecks unrelated offers from installers.
  • Malwarebytes - protects from dangerous threats that antivirus doesn't. Freeware
  • NetLimiter - Internet traffic control and monitoring tool. Freeware
  • Tor Project - Enable anonymous communication. Open-Source Software Freeware
  • Windows 10 Paranoid's Guide
  • Disable Data Logging - Make Windows 10 more private and safe. Freeware
  • Viscosity - Fully-featured OpenVPN client, ready for enterprise deployment. Freeware

Miscellaneous

Discussion Forums

Windows

IRC channels

Reddit

Contribute

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License

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.