In my time I’ve come to experience a variety of systems, strictly on a family basis usually – this has never been done in any official capacity. If you’re an average computer user who does not really know where to start with maintaining your desktop or laptop PC, then this could be the guide you’ve been looking for.

I will lay out some applications and programs that I use on a regular basis, if you’re looking for some more advanced tools and guides, check the links at the bottom of the page. There are two main categories here, (1) cleaning a system based on everyday use, and (2) securing a system. It should be noted that these might not cure an issue you’re having, sometimes there is no better remedy than reinstalling the OS.

For Web Developers

There will be a great deal of personal preference here, I generally aim for open source tools – and I use an IDE for auto-completing of functions and scope outlining (in this case, Aptana Studio)… plus of course, it can use TextMate themes.

But the IDE is only one part of development, so here are my other choices:

  • Version control: Git
    I find this rather useful, its light on the system in general, though I’m using it in a very hybrid manner, with git-gui for committing and everything else via git-bash (command-line).
  • Snippets:
    A more recent addition, I sometimes want to maintain snippets of reusable code; the only issue – it is Mac and Windows at the moment (no Linux).
  • Draft Mock Ups: Pencil
    Sometimes it can be useful to just quickly mock up things, but doing this often burns through paper – so a minimal app can be the way to go.
  • .Less Compiling: Koala
    Less is a syntax which effectively allows you to create variables in CSS; Koala allows you to compile it to CSS as you update your .less files.

Generally I’ve aimed for cross compatibility between Windows and Linux throughout, allowing me to migrate between my desktop (Windows) and laptop (Linux) if the need arises.