A List of Essential Tools for a new Computer
[Note: cross posted from IronShay.com]
This week I got my new laptop and it’s AWESOME!
It is a 64-bit Dell Studio XPS 16 with the following specification (the main features):
- Processor: Intel® Core™ i7-720QM Quad Core Processor 1.6GHz (2.8GHz Turbo Mode, 6MB Cache)
- Screen: 16' inch RGBLED Full HD 1080p
- RAM: 8Gb 1333Mhz DDR3 Dual channel
- HD: 500Gb 7200RPM
- Graphics: 1GB ATI Radeon HD 4670
And this is how it looks like:
It’s so much fun to work like that! everything just works and you don’t need to wait for operations to get done. They just do.
So after praising my new laptop, let’s move on to the main subject of this post – the tools I take with me to every computer I work on:
- Reflector – in my opinion, every .NET developer must have Reflector installed on his or her computer. There is no way you can understand the internals of the technologies you work with without going through their code, at least flutter through it. And if you don’t want to understand the internals, go to a shrink and figure out why do you settle for mediocrity.
- IronRuby – I use IronRuby’s REPL console as my main method of doing quick POCs, check what methods return and how to use them, etc. I used to use Snippet Compiler but IronRuby is so much faster and much more fun so I moved to it.
- GacView – I use it as a replacement to the “assembly” folder viewer that is provided by Windows Explorer. GacView shows you the assemblies in the Global Assembly Cache (GAC), provides information about them and most important – lets you copy them to a different location and to delete them.
- ViewStateDecoder – let you view what your page stores inside its view state hidden fields.
- Fiddler – A very simple to use and powerful network sniffer.
- SciTE – A light-weight editor with syntax highlighting and a simple code completion mechanism. I use it to change C# code quickly instead of opening the heavy Visual Studio, to write IronRuby code and to edit XML files.
- Process Explorer – I use it as a replacement to Windows Task Manager. I like the UI more and the ability to find handles and remove them becomes very helpful every now and then.
- ZoomIt – An awesome tool for presentations. If you speak occasionally and use a projector or a big screen, this tool is a must for you.
- PicPick – a light-weight tool to capture screenshots. Very easy to use and comes with some more handy features like a color picker.
- foobar2000 – A very light-weight music player which does exactly what it needs – play music. It comes with an easy to use music library viewer and can even show a balloon tip with the current playing song.
I highly recommend each of these tools because of my great experience with them. They make irritating tasks simpler and faster and eventually make me happier.
I hope they’ll make you happier too!