The release of Windows 8 is drawing ever closer and this means that there is a slew of apps being updated to add support for the latest version of the operating system. Paragon Image Backup for Windows 8 is one such program, giving you the chance to backup and restore your data free of charge. Fans of system tweaking and optimization should take a look at Auslogics Disk Defrag 18.104.22.168 and Auslogics BoostSpeed 22.214.171.124 which can be used to ensure the best possible performance from your hard drive as well as giving you a raft of tools to help boost the speed of Windows. Whether you’re upgrading to Windows 8 or not, you should keep an eye on your internet connection to check how it is being used by different programs – or malware – and this is something that Net Guard 126.96.36.199 enables you to do. This week also saw the release of Windows Essentials 2012, the latest collection of free tool from Microsoft including Live Messenger, Movie Maker, SkyDrive and more.
ACDSee Free 1.0.18 has been updated, providing you with a quick and easy way to preview images without the need to load them into a large image editing program, and if you are a Mac user you should take a look at Pixelmator 2.1. This surprisingly powerful low-cost image editor now feature Retina Display support as well as iCloud integration to sync work between computers. Sticking with the creative theme, FreeCAD 0.12 is an up and coming open source 3D CAD modelling tool that can be used to create designs from scratch or import model from other CAD packages you may have used in the past. For those with more musical leanings, Audio Editor FREE 7.10 is a great utility for editing and enhancing your sound files, but for more features you’ll need to upgrade to the Premium edition.
If you like the idea of controlling your computer with gestures, Flutter 0.1.185 could be what you’ve been looking for. Although currently fairly basic, it enables you to use your webcam and hand movements to control music and video playback. Although OS news stories tend to be dominated by Windows 8 at the moment, it is not so long ago that Apple releases the latest version of OS X. If you have multiple Macs that you would like to upgrade to Mountain Lion, but don’t want to have to download the installer more than once, Lion DiskMaker 2.0 can be used to create a USB installer disk. On the subject of Mac software, PlayOnMac 4.1.6 provides you with a way – although not a foolproof one – of running Windows software in OS X.
muCommander 0.9.0 is a file explorer and management tool that is available for Linux, Mac and Windows that offers a dual paned view for easy file operations. There have been a couple of office suites updated this week; LibreOffice Productivity Suite 3.6.0 adds support for new options and file formats, while SoftMaker FreeOffice 1.0.3340 has also received a minor update. If you’re looking for a way to control your Windows desktop images, take Desktop Background Tuner 188.8.131.52 which enables you to group images into categories and add transition effects between image changes. Finally for this week, Microsoft Attack Surface Analyzer 184.108.40.206 (32-bit) and Microsoft Attack Surface Analyzer 220.127.116.11 (64-bit) are great free security tools that enables you to monitor the changes programs make to your computer – although it is not a tool for the fainthearted.
That’s it for this week. Join us again in another seven days for the next roundup, and stay tuned to Downloadcrew for all of the latest releases as they happen.