Windows 7 Must-Have Software

As with all things, products like Windows 7 are never perfect, and each of us have our own preferences to doing things on the platform. From time to time, there will be clever little applications and utilities that would be useful for productivity and convenience reason. So here are some of my preferred utilities. Hopefully, you will also find them useful for your own computer.

1) Network Activity Indicator

This neat application displays the old ‘two monitors’ icon in Windows 7 that flashed blue to show network activity on the System Tray. Unlike the original Windows XP utility (that has individual indicators for each interface), this program indicates outgoing and incoming network packets on all available interfaces.

2) 3RVX Sound Volume Hotkey

This is useful if you often need to adjust the volume of the computer without going to the sound mixer system tray. Handy when you play games or video in full screen, and it’s too much hassle switching to and fro the two screens.

3) Crystal Disk Info

This is a useful utility that helps you monitor the temperature of your hard disk in your system. You will be surprised how much effort people put into cooling the CPU and graphics card, but not the hard disk! In my opinion, the data is more precious than your CPU, and hard disks can deteriorate much faster under high temperature. For normal use, it should hover around 32-38 degress maxiumum. Anything above may cause premature hard disk failure.

4) Auslogics Disk Defrag

Excellent defragmentation utility for your hard disk (SSD excluded). After prolong use, data in a file is fragmented into many piece across the surface of the hard disk, making reading more difficult and time-consuming. This reduces performance of your system. So, if you would like to try optimizing the read performance and boot speed, may be worth a try. Of course, nothing beats a solid-state HDD for booting up. 🙂

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