Saturday, September 01, 2007

Cool Tools - V2

It's that time of year again when Windows grinds down to a virtual hault and after a few weeks of pondering, I've decided this weekend was the time to rebuild my laptop. So, I wanted to make a note of the tools and apps I've been using (see my previous entry here).

Decision 1, Vista, XP or Ubuntu: I'd currently been using Vista which I'm happy with apart from my VPN client doesn't work. So I can't remotely log into my work network without spinning up a XP virtual. Pain indeed. The reason I'd consider XP is because of this, the features I like in Vista can be replicated in XP with tools like lauchy and Slick Run. I'd consider Ubuntu as I'm running it on my hope laptop. I could use OpenOffice and still develop in Rails, but some things like Live Meeting, a web sharing tool widely used at work, don't work. The VPN client doesn't work much like Vista and I couldn't install Visual Studio if I needed to do some .Net development.

Can't decide. Probably Vista with a virtual for VPN =/

Office 2007 is a cert, although I've no problem with OpenOffice. Many of the tools on the previous post still stand. Some I don't use any more because I'm not doing that type of work any more, or baked in features (index search in Outlook) have made applications like Lookout redundant (those in the know will know Lookout was bought by Microsoft and it's a high probablilty that the codebase found it's way into Office 2007). I've made a lot of use of OneNote which isn't in OpenOffice, so I'll be sticking with Office 2007 for now. There are alternative's, but I'm happy and lazy.

RealVNC is a cool product. We've got cool build TVs at work so VNC is handy for getting onto those computers (yes, built into the TVs how cool!) to display a web meeting or build reports.

Since doing a lot of Ruby on Rails development recently, I've been using Netbeans, but I'll probably give RadRails a try which is an Eclipse plug in.

I've been using HeidiSQL as a GUI front to MySQL which is very easy to use.

Other tools I've been using:

Microsoft Office Communicator
Flickr Uploadr
Foxit Reader
Visual Studio 2005 Team Tester/Developer edition (does anyone else hate SKUs?)
NUnit (not Visual Studio tests, see previous rants)
Nokia PC Suite (guess what phone make I've got)
VMWare Player
VLC Media Player