Individualize Windows 10: The best free apps for a better functionality

Windows 10 comes with a stack of great new features. Users can navigate intuitively through an improved Start menu, ask the voice recognition software Cortana for advice, or skip back and forth between virtual desktops. But there are a few more tricks to improve the performance of Windows 10 and to adjust its features to suit your personal requirements. We have put together ten apps for Windows 10 that will help you customize your user experience of the operating system. For instance you can restore any number of features from older Windows versions and add or individualize new functions. What’s more, our endorsements ease the strain on your purse strings, as all of the apps are available for free!

Individualize Windows 10 – Part II: Functionality

1. Run Editor

What’s happened to Adobe Reader? A phase of orientation is perfectly natural when switching to a different operating system. It’s wise to install the Run Editor to make sure you locate all of your programs and functions while you are still finding your way. This app lets you assign a custom abbreviation to each tool, which means for instance that you can open Adobe Reader using the shortcut combination PDF.  Download

2. Thunderbird

This app is a great addition to the proprietary Windows mail application, and helps you manage your e-mail correspondence. The biggest advantage of Thunderbird? Files can be attached to e-mails simply by right clicking and then selecting ‘Send to mail recipient’.  Review |  Download

3. CCleaner

There are functions that unnecessarily clutter your disk space and slow down your computer, whether it is temporary files from image and video rendering software, autostart programs or de-installation detritus from the registry. The CCleaner app cleans up your hard disk and gets your operating system back up and running at full speed. The application even gets rid of data traces left by the new Edge browser.  Review |  Download

4. SlimDrivers

CCleaner is not alone in speeding up your operating system; the SlimDrivers app also optimizes the tempo of Windows 10. After all, communication between the operating system and hardware can only run smoothly if all of the drivers are up-to-date. This application takes the task of checking driver status off your hands. SlimDrivers autonomously searches online for the latest driver versions, which it then downloads and installs.  Review |  Download

5. VLC Media Player

Windows 10 does not come with a feature to play DVDs. But no worries, the VLC Media Player will still let you watch your favorite film on your laptop while travelling by train. The app has no trouble playing DVDs and files in container formats like MKV, MP4 or FLV.  Review |  Download

6. Paint.NET

Did somebody photo-bomb your holiday snaps? Paint.Net lets you get rid of them in no time at all. The app compliments Microsoft’s proprietary image processing tool by adding a number of features and helping you manually or automatically retouch your photos. It also offers cutting tools, changes the resolution and improves colors. Professional users will have fun playing with the level features.  Review |  Download

7. Avast Free Antivirus

The pre-installed Windows 10 antivirus program Defender offers good basic protection. Anyone looking to enjoy a more comprehensive guard against viruses, Trojans and root kits should install the app   Avast Free Antivirus. A remarkable feature is its integrated web protection. Users should take care that they only have one antivirus program running, as there may otherwise be problems.  Review |  Download

8. Microsoft Hotfix

Windows 10 handles all of its updates automatically. But that is not always an advantage, as some updates can cause problems. The Microsoft tool Hotfix allows users to individualize at least some of their updates, leaving out certain ones that may possibly cause issues. The tool also allows the removal of installed updates that are already causing problems.  Review |  Download

9. Skype for Windows

Some projects simply can’t wait. With Skype, you can invite your colleagues from London, Amsterdam and Chicago to a spontaneous meeting. The option of chatting and telephoning for free via the Internet has revolutionized more than just the world of work. Unlike in the previous version, Skype is not pre-installed in Windows 10 and needs to be downloaded manually.  Review |  Download |  Details

10. 7 Zip

Windows 10 has no trouble opening ZIP and MSI files. But anyone also using RAR files is advised to install 7 Zip as a sensible addition. The app unzips files and all of the important formats. An additional benefit: it also allows users to create new password-protected archives.  Review |  Download

Leipzig, 21.12.2016

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