If a flash drive is one of those accessories that stays with you at all times, why not use it to carry your favorite applications around, so that you always get to use the same programs with the same settings no matter where you are? But which applications are you going to carry? Of course, you need to decide, probably make a list and copy them one by one to your pen drive. Or just use a portable application suite and save time.
1. PortableApps.com Suite - The most popular application suite comes from mecca of portable applications – PortableApps.com. PortableApps.com Suite is a complete collection of portable applications including a web browser, email client, office suite, calendar/scheduler, instant messaging client, antivirus, audio player … you name it. All applications are accessible via an interface menu. If you have this suite, in most cases, you won’t have to worry about any additional tool.
PortableApps.com Suite comes in three sizes:
Platform: 0.9MB (download), 1.2MB (installed)
Suite Light: 35MB (download), ~100MB (installed)
Suite Standard: 113MB (download) ~350MB (installed)
2. WinPenPack is an all-in-one collection of some of the best freeware portable application for the pen drive. WinPenPack comes in several editions like Essential, 1Gb, School, Game, Web and an option to make your own. These packs ranges from a few hundred MBs to 1GB. The essential pack contains a large collection of all essential tools and the school, games and the web pack has specialized applications, though most of the applications are also available in the Essential and 1GB pack.
WinPenPack has it's own categorized launch menu that gives easier access to these applications. This interface is in Italian. To change it to English you have to download an additional language pack which is available at their site. Unpack the language pack to the installation directory to change the menus to English. [original post]
3. Lupo PenSuite is a completely free suite of portable programs and games optimized to be loaded on a USB flash drive. This Suite includes over 200 highly selected portable programs and games, some examples are:7-Zip, Audacity, CCleaner, eMule, FileZilla, Firefox, Foxit Reader, Gimp, IrfanView, Miranda, Notepad++, Opera, Thunderbird, µTorrent, VLC and many more. Further, you can add your own applications and customize it according to your needs.
The Full version includes lots of programs and games for everyone, organized in various categories. It is perfect for who wants a full suite of software, free and simple to use.
The Lite version is a smaller release that contains only most useful applications. It is perfect for everyone wants a little suite, that can be customized by the user.
The Zero version contains only the launcher. It is perfect for everyone wants to create its own suite of software.
4. SSuite Office comes in several different flavors ranging from a 17 MB personal edition to a 35 MB “Fifth Element“ consisting of more than 30 portable applications. SSuite Office isn’t a complete application package, it’s rather an office suite. The applications included in this suite are for creating and handling documents, spreadsheet, PDF files, pictures and so on. Some additional applications like instant messengers, audio players and a tetris game is thrown into the package as well.
SSuite Office also includes a few desktop enhancing utilities like a Mac Dock, a floating desktop clock and a floating recent documents viewer.
5. J.U.D.E. (Jontys Universal Desktop Environment) – Unlike the above mentioned application suites, J.U.D.E. is a complete Windows desktop environment on it own. You can boot a PC right from the USB stick installed with JUDE and load a complete Windows environment for you to work on. You don’t require a PC running with Windows to use these applications. J.U.D.E. can boot and instantly transform any piece of lying hardware into a full running PC brimming with tools and programs.
J.U.D.E. is based on Windows PE 2.0 which is built on the Windows Vista Kernel. So most standard Windows apps will run but not ones which depend on the .NET Framework or DirectX etc. J.U.D.E. comes with Open Office, GIMP, Thunderbird, Firefox, GAIM and many others, and you can also add your own applications to the stick. More on J.U.D.E.
Didn’t like any of the above? Well, I’m sure you will like the following then.
MojoPac is a free software virtualization product that transforms any removable device into a portable computing environment. MojoPac isn’t an application suite – you choose what goes into your thumb drive. It just creates an environment on the host PC for you to work on.
It replaces the desktop of the host Windows PC with your own customized desktop with your own desktop icons, start menu, Internet Explorer, My Documents folder etc. The drives of the host PC, removable drives and DVD drives, printers etc all can be accessed from within MojoPac's environment. On the top of the screen is the MojoBar that quickly allows you to switch between MojoPac and the host operating system.
Just install MojoPac on any USB 2.0 compliant storage device, upload your applications and files, modify your user settings and environment preferences, and take it with you everywhere. More on MojoPac.