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Top 10 free software downloads

PC World

March 14, 2000
Web posted at: 8:36 a.m. EST (1336 GMT)

(IDG) -- Do your taxes, phone a friend, or edit your Palm files -- all on your PC, and all for free. In this week's list, the old adage that you can't get something for nothing doesn't apply. While you won't find marquee names here, you will find useful and robust free applications that perform a variety of tasks.

For example, check out NeoPlanet, a web browser that you can customize using skins to create an interface you like best. View and control another computer on your network remotely with the utility VNC. Store phone numbers, e-mail addresses and other contact information with Personal Address Book, a simple database program. And if that's not enough, check out FileWorld guru Max Green's list of the most popular files in the FileWorld library as part of PC World's annual free stuff issue (see "Top 10 most-popular downloads," link below).

Top 10 free software downloads


  1. TaxAct 99 Standard Edition: This collection includes the forms, schedules, and worksheets commonly used for personal income tax returns. Answer questions in an on-screen interview, or enter data directly into the relevant forms. Your tax liability is updated on screen as you move through the process.

  2. Add/Remove Plus: This system utility helps manage your Windows Add/Remove Programs list. Delete "phantom" programs that have long been uninstalled yet manage to stay on your Add/Remove Programs list.

  3. Personal Address Book: This simple database program lets you store addresses, phone numbers, and more. It also stores e-mail and Web addresses and exports data to Excel.

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  4. EasyMTU: This freeware quickens your dial-up connection by optimizing your TCP/IP settings. Make simple changes to your Windows Registry settings so you can take full advantage of your online time; the application includes a benchmark program that lets you compare different Registry settings to determine which establishes the best connection.

  5. VNC: View and control another computer remotely with this networking utility. VNC is platform independent--A desktop running Linux, for example, may be displayed on a Windows PC, a Solaris machine, or any number of other platforms. There are two parts to this application: a viewer and a server program. The viewer can be run as a stand-alone application or as a Java applet.

  6. PhoneFree: Use this utility to make free long-distance calls through your Internet browser. It's compatible with Netscape's Cooltalk and VocalTec's Internet Phone.

  7. DocInOut: Convert and edit Palm files on your PC and then reload them onto your handheld. This utility reads document files such as AportisDoc, and database files such as JFile and HandDBase. Once the files are converted, you can use the program to save them on your PC.

  8. NeoPlanet: This Web browser and "portable portal" offers search enhancements, multiple user profiles, e-mail previewing, support for Macromedia's Flash Player 4.0, and extended skin support. Version 5.1 adds customizable Web directories, NetClubs that you can create for public and private discussions, and bug fixes.

  9. Eudora E-mail 4.3: Users of Qualcomm's latest e-mail client can select a Light Mode (meant to be an upgrade for Eudora Light users), a full-featured Paid Mode (the upgrade for Eudora Pro users), or a free, full-featured Sponsored Mode that subjects you to advertisements.

  10. File Splitter: Split files into smaller pieces so they can be moved between systems on floppy disks. (The program creates a batch file that is easily reassembled on another PC.) You don't need to install the application on both machines to transfer the files.

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Top 10 most-popular downloads
(PC World Online)
Best free stuff online
(PC World Online)
Top 10 MP3 utilities
(PC World Online)
Top 10 cookie crushers
(PC World Online)
Top 10 video tools
(PC World Online)
Top 10 file-compression utilities
(PC World Online)
Top 10 system tune-ups
(PC World Online)
Top 10 silver-screen savers
(PC World Online)

Add/Remove Plus
Personal Address Book
Virtual Network Computing (VNC)

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