The people who frequently change their computers or travel a lot want to have their data with them all the time. It is not always possible to take a laptop or a computer with them. This is where the concept of portable applications comes in. Portable applications are programs that do not depend on any system and do not need to be installed anywhere. They can be installed in a folder and that folder can be copied and taken anywhere without leaving any settings or data behind.
As a network administrator, I have to travel between different office locations and need to use many computers. So I need to have all my data available with me all the time. My strategy is to keep my data in my USB Flash Drive and also on a secure network location syncing everything whenever possible. This enables me to keep my personal email, documents, browsers, password managers along with their settings and data with me regardless of whether I am online or offline. There are some sources from where I like to get my portable apps from. I will share 4 of my most frequently used sources for downloading portable apps.
Note: The following portable applications are meant for the Windows OS.
Portablefreeware.com is my most favorite site for searching any kind of portable apps. It has a large collection of portable freeware programs. The programs are well categorized and I can find almost every kind of software that I want to have in my USB Flash drive. The good thing about this site is that it is very frequently updated with new and updated portable apps. The reviews of the apps are to the point and important information is clearly written like where does the program store its settings, system requirements etc.
Portableapps.com is yet another site to look for portable version of latest and popular applications. I like it because their release cycle of new applications is very quick. I get the new portable version of lately released application within a day or two. Portableapps.com is also known for its portable apps suite. They have a fantastic set of applications combined as a suite along with the application launcher. So if you install the suite on a USB Flash drive, you can get a Windows start menu like application launcher which can be used to launch programs installed on the USB Flash drive. The best feature of this suite is that it also contains a software updater. The installed portable apps will automatically be updated without losing any settings or data.
Liberkey.com has a suite of portable apps. Currently there are 293 applications which can be downloaded with a single click. The applications are from different categories including audio, video, graphics, Internet, games, security, education, system, etc. This pretty much sums up everything a normal person would need for his daily needs. Liberkey suite also features automatic online updates. So all the programs in the suite get updated automatically without losing any type of setting or data. If you don’t want the whole suite, applications can also be downloaded individually.
WinPenPack is another suite of portable apps. It also contains the most popular applications for your pen drive. It differentiates itself from other portable app suites in that it has two types of suites available for download. WinPenPack Essentials contains only the most frequently used applications. This is especially handy for people who have space constraints. WinPenPack Full contains all the apps offered in the suite. Another good feature of WinPenPack is that you can build your own suite of portable apps with WinPenPack Personal. This can be handy for people who want to customize the suite to pinpoint their needs only.
These are the suites that I use frequently for my office needs. There are other suites that can also be used but I have not tried them yet. I am listing them here for your reference.
Both these are not as popular as the above mentioned suites but are certainly worth a try. I hope this has been post has been informative for our readers. You may also like to see how to make Windows applications portable.