Have you ever sat down at someone else’s computer and wished you had some of the applications you normally use on your own computer? Instead of spending the 30 minutes it would take to download and install all of the applications you want to use try Portable Apps. In the words of the Portable Apps team: “Now you can carry your favorite computer programs along with all of your bookmarks, settings, email and more with you. Use them on any Windows computer. All without leaving any personal data behind.” There are two main benefits of portable apps: 1) the ability to use your favorite apps with your settings on any Windows computer without having to install and configure them and 2) the ability to leave no personal data behind on whatever computer you run them on.
Portable apps have been repackaged so that all of the required components are kept in a folder along with the applications executable (.exe) file. The benefit is you can copy the portable apps to a usb drive and have them readily available anywhere you need them. To run the program simply go into its folder and double click on the .exe file for it. All of your configuration settings will be saved into the folder for that program. The picture below is an example of what 7zip looks like in portable form.
Since the portable apps are stored on a usb drive and the configuration files are stored there as well, no personal data is ever left behind on whatever computer you use. This means you can use Firefox portable to browse the web, check email, use online banking and when you are done simply unplug your USB drive to take your info with you. A warning – you must still be careful while browsing the web since Portable Apps do not protect you against viruses.
Portable Apps are limited to free, open source software. For a complete list of portable apps check out the Portable Apps website.