Utility USB Key

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by KookyMan, Feb 3, 2008.

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  1. KookyMan

    KookyMan Registered Member

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2008
    Posts:
    367
    Location:
    Michigan, USA
    Hey all. I've been reading this forum for a couple days, and thought that with all the expert knowledge here I should join and garner opinions from everyone.

    I'm in the process of creating a utility USB key to carry with me for various uses, and would love suggestions on software to add to it. I'm sure others would benefit from this list of applications. I do have a couple of requests and some criteria, which I will list below. I'll also try to update this with the recommendations given by others.

    Criteria:
    • Hardware: Memorex 2GB U3 USB Flash Drive. (If your not familiar with U3, click here.)
    • Licenses: Open Source/GPL is preferred, followed by freeware. Commercial software should only be recommended if there is no comparable alternative please.
    • Sizes: Its a 2GB drive, however I would like to keep most of that free for general usage.
    • Clean: Ideally software should write to local configuration files as opposed to registry changes, and leave no/minimal evidence of being used and not need to be installed.

    Software on Board:
    • IZArc2Go v3.81 - Freeware - Chosen over 7-Zip due to the increased number of archives handled, as well as CD Images. (7-ZIP, A, ACE, ARC, ARJ, B64, BH, BIN, BZ2, BZA, C2D, CAB, CDI, CPIO, DEB, ENC, GCA, GZ, GZA, HA, IMG, ISO, JAR, LHA, LIB, LZH, MDF, MBF, MIM, NRG, PAK, PDI, PK3, RAR, RPM, TAR, TAZ, TBZ, TGZ, TZ, UUE, WAR, XXE, YZ1, Z, ZIP, ZOO)
    • KeePass v1.10 - FOSS - In a U3 Container with On Screen Keyboard plug-in. Allows me to carry a copy of my passwords for websites with me.
    • PuTTY v.60 - FOSS - Great Telnet/SSH client. I'm also including the rest of the PuTTY Applications.
    • TrueCrypt v5.0 - FOSS - For on-key data encryption. Mainly for backups of software and passwords, as without Administrator access its unlikely I'll be able to use it.
    Notes: I've made a U3 container, allowing it to show up on the U3 Launchpad menu for IZArc2Go, and will do so for as much software as reasonable. PuTTY will not be part of the launch pad due to number of programs. TrueCrypt v5 will be released Feb 5th, and will be included at that point.

    What other software should definitely be included? Thanks for all the feedback in advance!
     
  2. HURST

    HURST Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2007
    Posts:
    1,419
    My personal utility USB drive has the following:

    PortableApps (www.portableapps.com), with this apps installed:

    7-zip portable (zip utility)
    Eraser Portable (safely erase files)
    Firefox portable
    Thunderbird portable
    Keepass portable (password storage)
    Pidgin portable (IM client, I use it with MSN messenger account)
    VLC (media player)


    I also have following apps, for running or installing, mostly used when cleaning other peoples computers:

    ATF cleaner (no install) - cleans temp files, cookies, etc
    Dr.Web CureIt (no install, I update it every 2 days) -free antivirus
    HiJackThis (no install)
    JkDefrag (no install)
    PC-Decrapifier (no install - actually never tried it) -unistalls trial versions and vendor bundled software, etc.
    Rootkit Unhooker
    SpywareBlaster (install)
    XP secconsole(no install) -remove or restore access to XP features
    CCleaner(install)
    Filealyzer -check file information, including hash strings
    MVPs Hosts File -block access to known malicious sites
    Neo's SafeKeys(no install)-defeats all known keylogger methods (except screen capture), usefull when traveling and using public computers
    ProcessExplorer
    SIW(no install) - info about the whole system: hardware specs, passwords, etc.
    SuperAntiSpyware (install)
     
  3. HAN

    HAN Registered Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2005
    Posts:
    2,080
    Location:
    USA
    I have too many things on my day-to-day USB drive to list... approx 2.5 GB worth of stuff! :eek: Most of it programs and utilities. Percentage-wise, very few data files.

    For truly portable programs, I have 2 sites that I review on a regular basis. They both have some very good apps and a few stinkers. I guess it's up to you to decide what might work best for you.

    http://portableapps.com/
    http://www.portablefreeware.com/

    FWIW, I initially liked U3 but after living with it for a month or two, I decided it was just slowing things down (waiting for the virtual drive to load, waiting on the GUI to do it's thing and so on.) I now just use my drives with no added interface. Just the way Mr. Gates made it... o_O
     
  4. KookyMan

    KookyMan Registered Member

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2008
    Posts:
    367
    Location:
    Michigan, USA
    I'll admit it, this U3 key when I first purchased (2 years ago or so) it was horrible to "boot". It would effectively lock up the PC I was using for 5-7 seconds, during the splash screen, needing 20 seconds from insertion to being able to use it. After researching recently and learning that there was a software upgrade, the boot time is almost instantaneous.

    Thank you both for your input, I'll be looking at your suggested sites.
     
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