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PortableApps AppCompactor 3.1.0

Shrink the size of portable executable files so they load faster from slow devices

by Mike Williams

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License: Freeware
Operating Systems: Windows 7 (32 bit), Windows 7 (64 bit), Windows 8, Windows Server, Windows Vista (32 bit), Windows Vista (64 bit), Windows XP
Requirements:
Languages: English
Software Cost: Free
Date Updated: 28 January 2014
Watchlist: Add download to my watchlist
Downloads To Date: 603
Developer: PortableApps.com
RSS News Feed: http://portableapps.com/feeds/general
Twitter Feed: http://twitter.com/#!/PortableApps
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/portableapps
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AppCompactor 3.1.0
Shrink the size of portable executable files so they load faster from slow devices

AppCompactor is a powerful tool which enables you to compress portable applications so they require up to 50% less disk space.

Why bother? If you're running an application from slow media, like flash drives or CDs, then you should find they now launch significantly faster. And the programs will decompress themselves automatically, so you don't have to do anything further - just launch your application and use it as you did before.

That's the theory, anyway. This kind of compression won't work with all apps, though, so you should back up your software first. But with that done, AppCompactor is very easy to use: just point the program at your portable installation's folder, choose your preferred compression method (or just select the default), and click Go. In just a moment you'll get a report on how much savings you've made, if any, and you can try the program out to see if you notice any increase in launch speeds.

Please note, malware authors also use this kind of tool to make it harder for security packages to detect them, and as a result antivirus tools may raise an alarm when they detect a compressed executable. AppCompactor is well known, though, so less likely to cause problems than most, but don't be surprised if a packed executable suddenly starts producing virus warnings. It's almost certainly a false alarm (though you should check it at somewhere like VirusTotal, just to get confirmation).

Verdict:

AppCompactor provides a quick and generally reliable way to cut your portable applications down to size. This can cause problems in itself, though, so back up your portable tools before you start, and be aware that a few security tools may complain about the packed executables afterwards.

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Spotlight: Free Full Software

Spektrel Art 1.0.0

Free Full Commercial Software

Spektrel Art is a stand-alone program and Photoshop plugin which transforms digital photos into "magical art that glimmers and gleams with intersecting lines of tapered light".

What does that mean? Essentially it applies a configurable mix of effects, enhancing edges, smoothing backgrounds and emphasizing colours. Take a look at the thumbnail for one example, and the official product page has more.

Spektral Art works much like any similar tool. Open an image, click one of the thumbnails to apply a particular preset, or click a few buttons and drag some sliders to fine-tune the results.

There's surprising scope for variation, too. For example, just switching from the "Light" to "Dark" theme can transform a bright and friendly image into something dark and sinister, at least in some cases (results vary depending on the source image).

Please note, the demo version doesn't allow images to be saved.

SPECIAL OFFER: as we write, the developer is offering Spektral Art for free. The offer expires August 29th. Please note that you must provide your name, address and phone number to receive your free license.

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