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Ask the Readers: What’s In Your Flash Drive Toolkit?

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Flash drives loaded with diagnostic apps, portable tools, and other goodies have become a significant part of most geeks’ computer fixing tool kits. What’s in your kit?

Photo by Russell Jones; check out his great guide to DIY armored flash drives here.

This week we want to hear all about the contents of your flash drive. What tools do you have squirreled away in there? What do they do? Which ones have really saved you in a time of need?

Come Friday we’ll round the responses, compile a list, and share all your favorite tools with the greater How-To Geek audience. The more detailed your list and description the better chance we’ll share your tool kit goodies.

Jason Fitzpatrick is warranty-voiding DIYer and all around geek. When he's not documenting mods and hacks he's doing his best to make sure a generation of college students graduate knowing they should put their pants on one leg at a time and go on to greatness, just like Bruce Dickinson. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 04/13/11

Comments (113)

  1. MetaNova

    Portable Apps.com Platform! (2.0 BETA: living on the edge)

  2. Hatryst

    UBUNTU !! :D

  3. Trojan

    A complete set of Sardu.

  4. Charles

    1. Windows 7 Ultimate installer
    2. BitDefender A/V Scanner
    3. PartEdMagic partition editor
    4. portable apps, Ninite

  5. SilverSuperman

    Ubuntu on one and on another i carry portable apps for security like an ssh client, antivirus, and portable browsers set to use the SSH tunnel. and a few other apps for travel.

  6. Patrick

    Microsoft Security Essentials and Malware Bytes. Never leave home without it ;)

  7. gamepin126

    3D Analyze
    7zip Portable
    Active Password Changer
    Asterisk Logger
    cports
    Driver Sweeper
    Everest Ultimate Edition
    Fast Copy
    File Association Manager
    hexedit
    HijackThis
    puTTY
    SysInternals
    Teamviewer
    Total Commander
    TreeSize Pro
    UnknownDevices
    UPX
    uTorrent
    WinDiff
    Windows Grep
    Wireless Mon
    xchat2
    XN Resource Editor

  8. LePeR

    Windows7 along with

    Autopatcher (includes windows updates and more)
    http://www.autopatcher.com/

    IOBit’s Advanced SystemCare
    http://www.iobit.com/advancedsystemcareper.html

    IOBit’s Toolbox (has a very useful set of tools included in it)
    http://www.iobit.com/toolbox.html

    Double Driver (backup drivers)
    http://www.boozet.org/dd.htm

  9. M4X

    Portable Apps, Keyfinder, Ophcrack and Blackbuntu on 2nd flashdrive.

  10. Keith

    Trucrypt

  11. Al

    On my Ocz it’s Ubuntu on the boot partition. On the second it’s many utilities, including Portableapps, Norsoft, Sysinternals and many others.

  12. Piny Tenis

    I absolutely love PStart and have been using it for years to manage my portable apps. Here is a list my list:

    7-Zip
    EjectUSB
    Firefox
    KeePass
    Network Scanner
    µTorrent
    ———-
    CCleaner
    Everything (great program for finding anything on the HD, via voidtools.com)
    Listary (find as you type search utility)
    NirLauncher (Portable suite with most of the NirSoft utilities)
    Notepad++
    Speccy
    System Information for Windows (SIW)
    TFC (Temp File Cleaner by Oldtimer)
    Q-Dir
    WinDirStat
    ———-
    PuTTY
    WinSCP
    ———-
    CoolPlayer+
    GIMP
    IrfanView
    VLC
    ———-
    ImgBurn
    Lightscreen
    Recuva
    Regpair
    Revo Uninstaller
    Wipefile
    ———-
    AV Suite (ClamWin, Cureit, Kaspersky Virus Removal, SpyDLL, SuperAntiSpyware)
    ———-
    Skype
    Transmiti (Wonderful translator that uses Google translate)

    All of this fits nicely on a 1GB with only about 3/4 of it being used.

    I have an 8GB that rotates a series of Linux Distros (Crunchbang to Ubuntu, Puppy to BT3) depending on what I need to do.

  13. xana452

    1. Portable Google Chrome
    2. A copy of MBAM for a quick install.
    3. Portable 7zip.
    4. All my personal stuff
    5. Ubuntu. (But I still need to make a partition.)

  14. Matt

    GeekMenu
    most used apps:
    ccleaner
    fileassassin
    freeraser
    lightscreen
    MV RegClean
    SIW
    RevoUninstaller
    Unlocker

  15. MJ

    Live Operative Systems:
    WinPE 32-bit
    WinPE 64-bit
    Ubuntu 10.04 Netbook LiveUSB
    ———————————————–
    Tools and Installers:
    7-Zip
    Anolis Resourcer
    Bulk Rename Utility
    Daemon Tools
    Device Doctor Portable
    Digsby Skin
    EasyBCD
    ESET
    Handbrake
    HP50g
    IcoFX
    IconWorkshop
    ImgBurn
    Kaspersky
    KeePass Portable
    SumatraPDF
    MalwareBytes
    Media Player Classic + FFDShow
    Microsoft .NET Framework
    Microsoft Malicious Software Removal Tool
    Microsoft Office Mathematics Add-In
    Microsoft SyncToy
    MP3Tag
    Opera + Plugins
    Paint.Net
    Partition Master
    PDF Password Remover 3
    Piriform
    ResHack
    Shortcut Manager
    Spotify Ad Blocker (Programmed by myself, Google for it!)
    Spybot Search & Destroy
    SuperAntiSpyware
    TeamViewer
    TeraCopy Portable
    TrendMicro
    Visual Basic 2010 Express
    VLC
    Windows 7 ISO to USB Tool
    Windows Tweaks (Regedits)
    Windows XP Themes
    WinToFlash
    ———————————————–
    Games
    Age of Empires II The Conquerors Portable
    Magic The Gathering LAN (Programmed by myself, unreleased)
    Rocks n’ Diamonds Portable

  16. chronomeister

    I generally have two; one with some Linux distro and the other with Sysinternals.

  17. zs474

    xboot

    sardu

    testdisk

    super-anti-spyware portable

    revo

  18. Nick

    PortableApps Suite
    MBAM installer
    RKill.scr
    CCleaner
    Defraggler
    IE7 installer
    WinXP SP3 installer
    Bluescreenview
    JavaRa/PureRa
    Sysinternals Suite
    HijackThis
    SuperAntiSpyware Portable

    Plus a few batch files, vbscripts, and registry key files…

  19. Lummy

    Customised Hiren boot CD(with a load of other apps it Thinstalled) and win 7 installer and some free space to back up any data.

    jobs a good’in

  20. Nick S.

    PortableApps Suite
    MBAM installer
    RKill.scr
    CCleaner
    Defraggler
    IE7 installer
    WinXP SP3 installer
    Bluescreenview
    JavaRa/PureRa
    Sysinternals Suite
    HijackThis
    SuperAntiSpyware Portable

    Plus a few batch files, vbscripts, and registry key files…

    And the other one has Ubuntu :D

  21. Daniel

    Ubuntu !! :D
    Portable Adobe Photoshop CS5

  22. Trent Bentley

    Bootable with multibootiso and loaded with ubuntu, memtest, clonezilla, kaspersky recovery disk, and partition magic. Also when booted in Windows, Portable Apps, Malwarebytes, HiJackThis, CCleaner, Recuva, Regmon, and Filemon. Also I have it formatted with two partitions because on some PC’s when you run Ubuntu from the Thumb drive, it won’t let you save to the same thumb drive but it will let you save to the second partition on that thumb drive for data recovery.

  23. Si1ence

    I have a custom boot USB flashdrive. I use Xboot, on it is AVG, Blackbuntu, BackTrack, Clonezilla, Dariks Boot & Nuke, DiskCopy, ERD, F-Secure, Ghost, GnackTrack, GParted, HDClone, Knoppix, MemTest 86+ SpinRite, SystemrescueCD, UBCD 4 Win, Ubuntu, Hirens and XBMC Live CD. I know a little over kill.

  24. wt73

    TLDL

  25. Eric

    Five distros of Linux, in installed form (not the live environments)

  26. linuxelitist

    Malwarebytes
    AVG install
    Norton removal tool
    McAfee Removal tool
    Avast Install
    Superantispyware .com file
    dial-a-fix
    combofix
    Firefox install
    Thunderbird install
    Bootable Nt crack
    Hijack this
    XP service pack 3
    IE-8 install Vista, XP
    Vista sp 1, 2
    Win 7 sp 1
    List of uncommon commands

  27. jerone

    I have a laptop, so I don’t need portable apps :)

  28. GriZlore

    a paperclip

  29. Ryan

    Google Chrome Portable
    GIMP Portable
    CamStudio Portable
    7zip Portable
    and probably a few more I’m forgetting

  30. Laura

    Ccleaner
    Super Anti Spyware (the best one) I think it’s the best freware program out there for saving computers
    Winrar
    Pacman
    Virtualdub
    Texas Hold’em
    Gimp
    Starburn
    How do you guys get the portable version of Mbam?
    I love portable apps! They are great since I don’t have a laptop and I can take my stuff on the go.
    I also have a bunch of other stuff as well.

  31. Tangomouse

    I’m supprised nobody has put down Re-enable V2

    Of which I’m the programer http://www.tangosoft.co.uk. Take a peek

  32. mackel

    A bare minimum bootable Linux that read ntfs. Preconfigured putty/vnc/SSH setups . I need my USB space to save their corrupted .pst and pics of their cat.

  33. trinity343

    I don’t really keep anything like the things everyone else is saying on a flash drive. i have a large amount of apps and programs and OSes on my 320GB WD Passport that i carry around with me for work. however, thanks to those listing things here i will now have some more programs to add to my list

  34. HellScream

    Ubuntu 8gb
    Sardu 2gb
    Portableapps suite 2gb
    Recuva
    Defraggler
    Opera/Chrome/Firefox portable
    Sysinternals
    HijackThis
    SuperAntiSpyware Portable
    MBAM installer and rescue disks

  35. jericjed

    Hiren’s Boot CD

  36. x3geek

    palemoon portable
    ubuntu
    hirens 10.6 (as it got “useless” after that version)
    portable apps (including office 2007)

    batch script that starts up palemoon, volumouse, autohotkey script for text replacement and other shortcuts

  37. Luke Rogerson

    Portable Apps and Kaspersky Rescue Disk!

  38. will

    http://www.whatsmypass.com/techtools-3-0

    except i have a newer version since i havent released the new db yet

    also boots into hirens,backtrack,memtest,konboot

  39. Aaron

    Ubuntu, BitTorrent, Chrome, Data Recovery Pro (how ironic…)

  40. Annie B.

    I have a category on my blog dedicated to geek tools: http://bit.ly/hzF4oG – It’s what’s on my 8GB Kingston DataTraveler Locker.

  41. gyffes

    The full range of Portable Apps

    AVG Rescue disc (wonderful app, this)

    Malwarebytes
    Recuva
    MSE
    SuperAntiSpyware

    The last 4 I use less of late as AVG has proven itself remarkably successful at purging the last several infestations.

  42. Kerensky97

    Portable apps
    TOR Bundle
    SSH keys to access home network (in a truecrypt drive).

    I thought of carrying Ubuntu but usually if I’m using a temp computer I’m not going to waste 30 minutes mapping drives and getting tarballs to get the network adapters running just so I can knock out 10 minutes of work.

  43. Teotw

    Knoppix live
    Isn’t that all you really need?

  44. krunk fu

    hiren’s boot cd, 10.6

  45. Altyer Otoni da Silva

    1st Partition:

    A turbinned 40+ add-ons Firefox Thinapped by myself, password protected at startup!

    Other Thinapped apps:
    Ccleaner
    7-zip
    Everest
    Office 2003
    Registry Workshop
    ResHack
    Shutter by Denv4b (already portable, excellent..)
    Autoruns (already portable, excellent..)
    TuneUp 2007 (Less administrative requirements than recent versions)
    WinHP
    WinHex
    UltraIso
    Bios320…
    And Thinapp 4.6 portable!

    Some executables:
    K-Lite Codec
    7-zip
    Active Captions
    Norton IS 2011 (I use KIS, Norton is for my friends (easy c****))
    Kaspersky Removal Tool

    2nd Partition:
    KdPup Linux

    That’s it!!

  46. Chaos

    The Essentials: all the installers you need for a new load. winsock fix, reg fixes
    anyone know of one that would overlay your desktop settings on the host computer?

  47. Paul Smith

    I have one USB with KATANA installed and another with a persistant Backtrack 4 install. As a Cyber Security Analyst These two have all the tools I’ll ever need.

    KATANA includes:

    Live distros:
    - Backtrack
    - the Ultimate Boot CD
    - CAINE
    - Ultimate Boot CD for Windows
    - Ophcrack Live
    - Puppy Linux
    - Trinity Rescue Kit
    - Clonezilla
    - Derik’s Boot and Nuke
    - Kon-Boot

    Portable tools:
    - Metasploit
    - Wireshark
    - NMAP
    - John the Ripper
    - Cain & Abel
    - Firefox
    - PuTTY
    - the Unstoppable Copier
    - OllyDBG
    - Cygwin
    - ClamAV
    - IECookiesView
    - MozillaCacheView
    - FreeOTFE
    - FindSSN
    - The Sleuth Kit
    - OpenOffice
    and many more.

    I personally added:
    -AVG
    -CCleaner
    -7-Zip
    -Spybot

    Link:
    http://www.hackfromacave.com/katana.html

  48. turtle

    ~~~Disclaimer…LOL dream set…
    ~1.5 tb w.D. 4 portable apps/portable xampp server
    ~geek squad w/ geek squad 16 gb flash drive
    ~Ubuntu from canonical 2 help support Ubuntu/Ubuntu Netbook remix
    ~512 mb magic parted (persistant) windows reset password
    ~8gb U3 sandisk w/ paid avast a.V. portable…
    ~256 gb SSD w/ 1k$ full windows rainbow tables 4 OPHcrack
    ~256 gb SSD 4 word dictionaires
    ~Iron Key-8gb
    ~1.5 TB w.D. multi-Linux HDD:
    ~~BSD/fedora/Puppy/Mint/XFCE/knoppix/gentoo/cloneZilla–gpartedMagic/backtrack 3 & 4…++many more…
    ~8gb multi-windows 7/xp installer
    ~32 gb ultra fast usb 3.0 (pcmia &/or pcExpress)…Hackintosh…??? &/or callyway MAC just 4 curiosity sake…..
    the turtle tech. from the mid-west && the LBC soCal…

  49. Ja5087

    Portableapps

  50. Anonymous

    I have a 64G thumb drive (Patriot XPorter Magnum 64 GB) so I pretty much carry EVERYTHING! However, it’s slow as heck when I launch Ubuntu and run a stripped down version of XP virtually (using VBox). Although it really depends on the machine just how painful this can get – I can do it. In fact, Ubuntu is only one OS that I can boot into. Running a simple virus scan with Kaspersky or cracking something with Backtrack are also within my arsenal of software weapons – and it’s all in my pocket! Seems once you get past the 8Gig capacity in a thumb drive you can really go nuts with this stuff.

    Now if only Microsoft would allow Windows to be run as a host OS from a thumb drive and not require their silly/oppressive re-activation bologna every time you ran it on a different machine. Pie in the sky dreaming I suppose. So it looks like I’ll be using Windows in a virtual environment from now on other than the Windows pre-install goodness from people like Hiren Pankaj or BartPE. Guess that’s why Linus Torvalds came up with Linux too. Thanks Linus! THANKS! THANKS! THANKS! (Hey Bill! Guess what finger I’m holding up?)

  51. Samuel Coxson

    Lastpass Sesame in several flavours (32bit Windows, 64bit Windows, Mac and Ubuntu)
    Lastpass IE Anywhere
    Notepad++ Portable
    Tor Portable
    Firefox Portable
    Chrome Portable
    and SuperAntiSpyware as of last week.
    Oh and probably Ubuntu on a spare somewhere.

  52. uttaradhaka

    Avast installer
    MBAM installer
    Portable SpywareByte’s Antispyware
    Speccy
    firefox installer
    fixwin
    7zip
    Glary Utilities
    CCleaner

    These are the tools I use to get my relatives out of hot water. But, its very interesting to see what other people have in their arsenal!!!!

  53. grigore

    boot loader (lilo)
    ->hiren’s boot CD (always the latest) ->installed on stick
    ->a basic version of slackware (you never know)
    ->a driver pack for linux
    ->a driver pack for win XP (i hate win 7 to the core)

  54. CloudCell

    I have:
    -Portable Apps
    -7-zip
    -DTaskManager
    -FileZilla
    -Google Chrome
    -InfraRecorder
    -LightScreen
    -Firefox 4
    -Notepad++
    -PDFTK Builder
    -PNotes
    -VirtuaWin (More than 1 desktop)
    -WinPenguins (Random penguins walking on your desktop)
    -WinScp

  55. ne0h

    SonyaPE for Admin’s

  56. Johnagall

    A quick question about having MBAM and other A/V software in portable versions:

    Do you have to constantly update your flash drive with new definitions, or does the portable app update its definitions on booting up?

  57. durr

    Gentoo

  58. Benjamin Nunn

    Portable apps (personal)
    Liberkey (tools and utilities)
    Full set plus some addins
    Multibootiso (os independent tools and persistent Ubuntu)

  59. Ishwar Kanse

    Chromium OS Flow on a 4GB flash drive for safe browsing and access to data, I use it when I’m not carrying my laptop with me when traveling. :)

  60. Airn5475

    Only Ubuntu at this point (which has been sufficient for the little that I use it), but after reading this list I have a whole list of apps to check out.

  61. J0000

    shell.reg
    rkill.com
    MBAM installer

    That’s all I’ve needed so far to clear infections :)

  62. George

    I have several USB flash drives. The 2 i use most:

    16GB flash with Linux Mint 10 with a 4GB persistence file. The drive has 2 partitions and the second partition is used to store files for transfer to another PC if there is no network available.

    The second drive is a Multiboot I made from Pendrivelinux. It has Ubuntu 10.10 for x32 and x64, several ISO files with Symantec Ghost (network card specific) Partition Wizard 5, and AVG.

  63. dugstratbear

    Whats in my kit? Well.. actually too numerous to list them. I don’t even remember myself because there are so many! When troubleshooting and/or fixing I usually have everthing I need, which is necessary, since a lot of people I help do not have a second computer to look up/download information and tools.

  64. Martik

    - Martik 32bit or 64bit
    - Martik PC F!X
    - Martik SIS Signer 3.1
    - In Class Translator 1.1
    - Martik Unit Converter 1.0
    - CD/DVD/BlueRay Recovery 1.0
    - How To Solve A Rubik’s Cube 2.0

  65. david

    Hirens 13.1

  66. Stevie H

    Porn.

  67. Liz

    Everest, malwarebytes, avast, trend, spinrite, renamer, my defrag, beyond compare,
    odd drivers and a few handy scripts and of course all offline updates
    just about everything other than a OS to reset up any pc at the office.
    Music and space for anything I might want to claim from you PC.

  68. Fathergoose

    TrueCrypt

  69. Chris LTQ

    - Portable Apps
    - CloneZilla
    - FileZilla
    - Ubuntu
    - Dell Diag Tool
    - DriverMax
    - 7-ZIP
    - Malware bytes
    - Trail Version of Kaspersky
    - Hirens
    - Windows Password Reset Tool (http://www.pogostick.net/~pnh/ntpasswd/)
    - HijackThis
    - Office 2007 / 2010 Installation files for office repairs
    - A number of ‘home baked’ DOS scripts, and VBS scripts.
    - ProcMon
    - Some ‘how to’ word docs for users who are repeat offenders!!

  70. pizzabandit

    I clean my USB stick often and replace my tools. But as a general rule I try to keep: Windows 7 Installer (boot from USB), Chrome standalone installer (I hate IE with a passion), Teamviewer (excellent remote support tool), large collection of various drivers (printer, video, peripherals), A/V tools (MSE, MBAM), most of Piriform’s tools (CCleaner, Defraggler, etc.), Keepass, MySQL GUI tools (portable), various apps from Portableapps.com, VirtualCloneDrive, ISO images of various software (MS Office, Adobe CS, etc.), Foobar2000 (and enough 40′s era music to annoy most folks at my office), and some other things I’n sure I’ll remember later on (amazing what you can cram onto USB sticks these days)

  71. Matti

    If I were to actually have one, I’d probably have stuff for disinfecting malware:
    Autoruns, Process Explorer, Process Monitor, GMER and stuff like that. Also a live linux version would be nice for partitioning and rescuing files. I would rather have live linux on a CD though. If the computer would be a little older, it might not support booting from an USB stick.

  72. Johnagall

    HELLO!

    Do you have to constantly update your flash drive with new definitions, or does the portable app update its definitions on booting up?

  73. Hamburger

    Hirens boot disk (has almost everything i need really), ms security essentials, malwarebytes, some msoffice iso, magiciso virtual drive install, snapshot, and some other programs that I cant remember right now.

  74. Stewart Redback

    Autoruns
    Process Explorer
    Ariskkey
    CCleaner
    Hijack This
    MalwareBytes installer
    Unstpcp.exe
    Scanner.exe
    TFC.exe

  75. jeeepers

    Virus Scanners: superantispyware, File Asassin, MRT.exe, Re-Enable, Spybot
    Backup: DriverBackup, MozBackup, DoubleDriver, HDHacker, SpeedyFox.
    Boot: Bootice, MBR Wizard, USB Drive Creator, WintoFlash, xBoot.
    Cleaners: Glary Util’s, NotifiAreaCleaner, PrivacyMantra, RizonePowerTools, TempFileCleaner, XCleaner, PureRa.
    FileMgrs: CubicExplorer, DuoExplr, Everything, Explor++, FindFatFolder, FolderSize, Free Comdr, Master Comdr, PeStudio, Treesize, UltraSearch, Xenon and a few others.
    CheckDiskGUI, Keepass 1.19, Chromium (Firefox4 and Iron Portablwes on Seagate FreeAgent 500GB ExtusbHD, fast as hell,) JRE6.24, JavaRa, JKDefrag (great to shrink windows size on disk/ install Linux Dual Boot,)
    MediaPlayers: KMPlayer, LightAlloy, VLC, Mplayer, MediaInfo.
    IPTools: Angry IP Scanner, eToolz, Networx, ProcNetMonitor.
    Notepads: AbiWord, CintaNotes, EditPadLite, Juarte, MetaPad, MiniPad2, NotePad++, NotePad2, NotepadLite.
    Paint.Net, YIcon (png to icon or viceversa)
    ProcessHacker, RocketDock (hangs on startup if installed,) System Explorer, SideSlide, Skype, SystemNucleus, Uni-Extractor, USBDesktopLock.txt, Virtua-Win, XSetup, Yodm3D, …
    Countless others- Have a 4GB Sandisk Flash Card 30MB/sec and it’s only half full, I swear you can’t fill it up, (games?)

  76. jeeepers

    Those programs that I felt confident enough to graduate from the flash card to the hard drive were: Sysinternals, Nirsoft, Rainmeter, SendtoMD5, MiniBin, GodMode (system settings), WakeUponStandby, CloseAll.exe, IPLocator.exe, Restart Explorer (once a .bat script now a .exe via BattoExe.,) Sumatra, WindowsUtilitiesLauncher2.0.exe..

  77. Greg

    File Assassin
    MBAM
    CCleaner
    Super Anti Spyware
    Portable Apps:
    7zip
    SQLite
    Chrome
    Spybot
    SpyDLL
    EraserDrop
    iportable
    Revo
    WinDirStat

  78. Brodiemac

    Don’t call me a pack rat because I use every single one of these in my support role, helping friends and family with computer/network problems and in my System/Network admin role at work:

    7-ZipPortable
    AntRenamerPortable
    AppCompactor
    BrowserBackup
    CClean
    ClamWinPortable
    CrystalDiskInfoPortable
    DamnVidPortable
    DatabaseBrowserPortable
    Device Doctor Portable
    DoubleKiller
    Driver Backup
    EjectUSB
    EraserPortable
    FastStone
    FileZillaPortable
    FirefoxPortable
    GIMPPortable
    HijackThis
    IE History Viewer
    ImgBurn
    IrfanViewPortable
    JkDefragPortable
    KeePassPortable
    Ketarin
    KeyUpdateTool
    LicenseCrawler
    McAfee Removal
    MozBackup-1.4.10-EN
    Network Scanner
    NetworkLights
    NK2Edit
    Norton Removal
    Notepad++Portable
    OpenOfficePortable
    PC Wizard
    PDFV_Portable
    PortableApps.com
    Process Explorer
    ProduKey
    PuTTYPortable
    Q-Dir
    Recuva
    RegshotPortable
    RevoUninstallerPortable
    Risk II
    SIWPortable
    SpybotPortable
    SpyDLLRemover
    SuperAntiSpyware
    TaskCoachPortable
    TeamViewerPortable
    TFTP
    ThunderbirdPortable
    Toucan
    TweakUI
    uTorrentPortable
    Vista Tweaker
    VLCPortable
    WhoCrashed
    WindowsErrorLookupToolPortable
    WinMergePortable
    WinSCPPortable
    Wireless Key View
    WiresharkPortable
    Xinorbis

    I use Ketarin to keep up to date installers for the following:
    7zip
    Cclean
    Comodo Firewall
    FileZilla
    Flash Player (IE and FF)
    ImgBurn
    InfranView
    MalwareBytes Anti-malware
    Microsoft Security Essentials (all versions)
    OpenOffice or LibreOffice
    PDF-XChange Viewer
    Spybot Search and Destroy
    TeamViewer
    TrueCrypt
    ZoneAlarm

  79. Steven Shaffer

    I have a 16gb USB thumbdrive with the following:
    Yumi (formerly multiboot iso’s)
    Yumi is loaded with apps like…

    Ultimate Boot CD
    Trinity Rescue Kit
    System Rescue CD
    Kaspersky Rescue Disk 10
    Ubuntu 10.10
    Partition Wizard 5
    Memtest86+ (Memory Diagnostics)
    Redo Backup and Recovery 0.9.5
    Parted Magic
    GParted
    Clonezilla Maverick
    AVG Rescue CD (Antivirus Scanner)
    Avira Antivir Rescue CD (Antivirus Scanner)
    EASUS Disk Copy
    Hiren’s Boot CD
    Windows 7 SP1 x86/x64 Install Disk

    I also have folder loaded with portable apps that I can access and run from Hiren’s boot cd which I can load from the Yumi menu. The main portable app I use is SuperAntiSpyware. All of my portable apps are setup to run from a Pstart menu that runs from the system tray.
    I also use apps like Absolute Uninstaller (batch uninstaller) to save time getting rid of all those toolbars and coupon printers and the like that most clients put on their computers. Saving me from babysitting all the uninstalling.

  80. Morely the IT Guy

    YUMI (see http://www.pendrivelinux.com/yumi-multiboot-usb-creator/ ) with:

    AVG Rescue CD (Anti-Virus + Anti-Spyware)
    DBAN 1.0.7 (Drive Nuker)
    Memtest86+
    Clonezilla
    Parted Magic 4.10 (Partition Tools)
    Partition Wizard 5 (Partition Tools)
    Balder DOS image (FreeDOS)
    Linux Mint 9
    Ubuntu
    Kubuntu
    Lubuntu
    Xubuntu 9.10
    DSL 4.4.10 (Damn Small Linux)
    OphCrack XP 2.3.1 (XP Password Cracker)
    OphCrack Vista 2.3.1 (Vista Password Cracker)
    Offline NT Password & Registy Editor
    Ultimate Boot CD 5.01
    Ultimate Boot CD for Windows 4
    SliTaz 3.0
    Riplinux 9.3
    YlmF (Windows Like OS)
    xPUD 0.9.2 (NetBook Distro)
    Puppy 4.3.1
    Puppy Arcade

  81. Greenway256

    A .VHD file to mount on the operating system so it’s much faster than just on my flash drive, and WinMount Portable to mount it. Looking for a better one, though.

    Applications:
    7-Zip Portable
    Abiword Portable
    AniFX Portable
    Anim8or
    Audacity
    BlueGriffon
    CPU-Z
    DM2
    Easy Duplicate Finder
    Eclipse Helios
    eXpresso
    Firefox Portable
    FotoSketcher Portable
    FontForge
    Foxit Reader Portable
    Frhed-1.6.0(hex editor)
    IcoFX Portable
    IrfanView
    kPad
    memPad
    NetBeans
    Pidgin Portable
    PNotes
    PortableApps.com App Compactor
    Q-Dir
    Rambooster
    Rapid Environment Editor
    Renamer
    Revo uninstaller
    RWPaint.com
    SearchMyFiles
    Shutter
    SIW (System Information for Windows)
    Spread32
    System Explorer
    TeamViewer
    TedNotepad
    TeraCopy Portable
    UnderCoverXP
    Unlocker Portable
    uTorrent
    VirtuaWin Portable
    WhatinStartup
    Yoyo cut

  82. vicsar

    One simple tool, has it all an if its not there it will be there: Ubuntu (10.4.2, LTS).

  83. jeeepers

    While I’m thinking about the subject, does anyone know how to disable the Chromium 12 blue portable splash portugese thingy. The other/source .ini copy file trick doesn’t work.

  84. Exzachtly

    Lubuntu, nuff said.

  85. jeeepers

    A StandaloneStack2 pointed at the direction of the flash folder in “my computer” and pinned to the win7 taskbar works better than any portable app launcher that I found. Hint- For each folder on the flash right click customize, change icon of the folder to the exe file in that folder and right click the rest of the files in that folder to hidden. You get a really clean display when the stack jumps off the taskbar.

  86. Marc Jell

    Portable Ubuntu

    Liberkey – far superior to Portableapps.com

  87. swreynolds

    I must need a lot of help. I have over 1,000 files on my flash drive to help me solve Windows computer problems.

  88. Edward Fairchild

    7 Taskbar Tweaker
    7Zip
    99 and 109 Windows 7 Shortcuts
    AboutTime
    Air Mopuse Moble
    AllChars
    AntiCapsLock
    Aquasnap
    Autohotkey
    Autoruns
    Belarc Advisor
    Blue Screen View from Nirsoft
    Bullzip PDF Printer
    CFont
    Clipdiary
    ColorPicker
    CPU-Z
    DeskPins
    Eraser
    Extended Character Map
    File Analyzer
    Firefox
    FixWin
    FontC
    FontSelector
    GEDCOM Add Note
    GEDCOM Add Source
    GEDCOM Browser
    GEDCOM Split
    Genealogy Estimator
    GPU-Z
    Hex Editor
    Hijack This
    iTunes Genre Arts Manager
    Karen’s Directory Printer
    Last Pass
    Live.SysInternals.com toolset
    Logon Screen Rotator
    Macrium Reflect Free
    Marxio-File Checksum Verifier
    Monitor Switch
    National Geographic Downloader
    Nircmd
    Notepad++
    PDF2Word
    Power Menu
    PrintKey2000
    RAR Extract Frog
    Run Analyzer
    RunAsDate-x64
    SDelete
    SendToToys
    Simple Internet Meter Lite
    SimplyIcon
    SimplyIcon
    SuperAntiSpyware
    SyncbackSE
    Sysinternals Suite
    System Uptime
    Syster Explorer
    TaskInfo
    Treesize Free
    TweakMe!
    Ultimate Windows Tweaker
    UltimateDefrag
    Unerversal BIOS Backup Toolkit
    Unlocker Assistant
    USBScales
    WinBubble
    Windows 7 Start Button Changer
    WindowsGrep
    WinGurgle
    WinSpy
    WordWeb
    xxcopy

  89. MJ

    @Tangomouse: Re-Enable 2.0 looks great, it’s now in my USB stick.

  90. G Golden

    Sardu on a 4gb stick with:
    Ubuntu 10.10
    Puppy Linux 5.25
    UBCD4Win
    UBCD 5.03
    Trinity Rescue
    Redo backup
    Avira Rescue
    NT Pwd Recovery

  91. jeeepers

    I don’t often reply to posts, kind of a newbie, but I like this one. Point to be made is that a portable flash drive/card is a great place to tryout portable versions of new software. Then after a period of time and if you really like the software go get the installers and put the .exe’s on your (C:) hard drive. For every program that I still have on my flash you could count 3 others that got deleted. Also convenient that they never made it to the recycle bin. I guess if had installed all of those programs my registry would screem bloody murder, and the regpolice would surely hunt me down.

  92. Alex.B

    Live Ubuntu 10.4 install on one, and just documents, media and one game on the other. (that one game is powder toy!)

  93. Jake

    Lot of it is work related but,

    Sysinternals Suite
    HiJackThis
    RAdmin S/V
    7zip
    VLC Media Player
    CutePDF
    OpenOffice
    Spybot S&D
    malwarebytes
    Microsoftdbg tool
    Audacity

  94. Bjarnovikus

    “Some” portabble apps:
    7-zip, AssaultCube, Audacity, Blender, Canabalt, Damnvid, FoxitReader, FretsOnFire, GIMP,
    GoogleChrome, Notepad++, OpenOffice.org, Pidgin, Spybot, SpyDLLRemover, Teamviewer, VLC and WinSCP

    Of Course they are not all tools but they are tools for me when I come to a place without OpenOffice installed (like my school).

    After that I’ve got a few non-portabble apps but these don’t need an installation (so they are portabble, but they don’t work with portabbleapps.com :P )
    ProcessExplorer, Ext2Explorer, Game Maker 8 Pro (Homemade-cracked-portabble edition, But I have paid for the original program :) )

    I’m planning to install ccleaner too and some installation files for some programs…

    Does anyone have VirtualBox installed as a portabble app, or is this impossible?

  95. Ubergeek71

    Portable apps with
    Firefox
    Thunderbird
    Eraser
    Spybot
    Clamwin (for those times you really need an antivirus but can;t get one to load :)
    7Zip
    Disk Cleaner
    JK Defrag
    etc, etc, etc.

    And one drive w/Ubuntu Portable

    -just to show off my geekness-

  96. SirSparksalot

    MalwareBytes
    Avira Antivir (free)
    Ccleaner
    Super Antispyware

    All used to clean junk off of friends P.C.s that think that their computers already have A.V. software. DOH!

  97. N.A. Rawat

    Hiren Boot 13.0

  98. Wayne in Indy

    I have a large variety for things.

    I have a virus folder with several current installs for MSE, AVG, Avast, IO-Bit, BitDefender, and others.
    I have an internet folder with the latest Firefox, Chrome, TCP View and Netgear utilities, and Bit Torrent.
    I have a tuneup folder with things like IO-bit utilities and CC-Cleaner.
    I have a disk folder with various format, boot, file recovery, and rescue utilities.
    I have a password folder with some password crackers and reset utilities.
    I have a folder with various Windows registry hacks for things like adding special options to right click, or turning off some annoying Windows defaults.
    And then a folder for odds and ends utilities and drivers.

    This flash drive is like my car keys; always in my pocket.

  99. Aaditya Kumar

    Everything you want………………………………………..

  100. JAR

    SuperAntispyware a must!
    Malwarebytes a must!
    Firefox portable
    Avira Rescue Disk
    Winzip
    Ccleaner
    Plus articles from How-To Geek about how to get rid of various viruses and using the Avira Rescue Disk.

  101. Jerk714

    mri bde 5.5.0 (from geek squad)

  102. Jerwil

    Hiren Boot CD. All utilities you need is in there.

  103. Darron

    Bootable DOS system with full set, office word and spread sheet, graphics,3d animation,2d cad, diagnostic tools.
    Bootable Ubuntu 11.04 beta and 10.10
    PortableApp
    Forensic tools for networks and data recovery.
    The odd favourite app, scribus, inkscape.

  104. cloonn

    PendriveLinux
    Clonezilla
    SystemRescueCD
    UBCD5
    TrinityRescueKit
    BT4 Live

  105. Olde Geeke

    Hey, Steve H., just a note to let you someone appreciates honesty.

    I acquired several 249Mb stick drives, freeDOS on one, puppy on another, Zenwalk on a 4Gb SD card,
    + my 8Gb USB that has all the Windows recovery CD ISO’s for Vista, and Win7 32+64, so I can boot up and write a CD on the spot-Kaspersky, Rescues CD, Ophcrack, and others.

    I am starting work on a USB drive that will boot up and let me run any ISO right from the stick. Then everything will fit one one drive I can “stick” in my pocket. I tried the “multiboot” software, but, as usual, it didn’t work. So I have downloaded PDF and text files telling me how to “command-line it”, and am trying to assemble a large bootable USB drive that will load ISO’s and run them.

    Get back with you when I get this dog to hunt.

  106. Pirated.Virus

    Win Penpack

  107. Pirated.Virus

    Win Penpack
    uTorrent
    Free Download Manager
    NetBalancer
    FireFox
    Google Chrome
    Tera Copy
    7-zip Portable
    Auto Hotkey & Scripts

  108. Texas_Comfort

    I think How To Geek needs a print button similar to Hotmail’s so that we can ‘select all’ and not get the sidebars to save a page with Word… easier.

  109. Kagnew

    Firstly I have made my drive bootable. This is imperative in my book.

    I work with a lot of folks that have Tivo networked. So I have Tivo File Cleaner and Tivo Install package on my thumb drive. In addition I have:

    CCleaner
    Revo Uninstaller portable
    MBAM
    Avast

    And after reading a lot of these responses I plan to start carrying a few more, one of which will be, Renable.

    Steve, Thanks for hosting this site!

  110. Dean

    after reading all these posts and copying a lot down for later sorting.. here is what i think may have been missed that i use regularly. (some seen above need reiterating)

    - PXE boot (rom-o-matic)
    - GPXE
    - BIOS flash tools

    - bootable AV tools
    – AVG
    – AVIRA
    – Bitdefender
    – Panda safe
    – Kasperky

    - HDD tools
    – dban 2.2.6
    – dban 1.0.7
    – partition wizard
    – parted magic
    – gparted
    – ghost 11.5.1
    – Western Digital Diagnostics 504f
    – spinrite
    – MHDD
    – Image for linux / Image for dos

    other bootable tools
    – memtest 4.20
    – freedos
    – HDT
    – redo
    – trinity
    – UBCD
    – RIP linux
    – Hirens
    – Ubuntu-Rescue-Remix
    – System Rescue CD

    - linux
    – BT4 RC2
    – DSL
    – tails
    – Jolicloud

  111. James

    CC Cleaner Portable
    CPP Product Key finder
    Data Eraser
    Defraggler
    Malwarebytes
    MS Security Essentials
    Norton Removal Tool
    Panda Recovery
    Recuva
    Speccysuper Antispyware Portable
    7 Zip

  112. Daniel M.

    Blackbuntu – 1
    Back|Track 5 – 2
    DBAN 2.2.6 – 3
    Ported Apps for most Linux Distros, and a spare copy of SET.

    Always keep a backup ;)

  113. Vagablonde

    I live in a rural area with rural area internet so anything that might be needed or downloaded I try to have with me,many are still on GASP dialup.

    The Guide (With all my notes and information)
    Dreammail
    WinRoll
    Faststone Capture

    Media
    7Burn
    imgburn
    Lightscribe
    VLC

    Password
    Magical jellybean keyfinder
    Cain & Abel

    Update
    Ketarin to update apps
    Portable Software Updater
    Sysinternals Updater
    Zeuapp

    Browsers
    Firefox
    Internet Explorer
    Opera

    Registry

    Regedit (Tweaks & Repair)
    RT Registry Tweaker
    Tweak Ui
    Ultimate Windows Tweaker
    Vista Tweaker

    Driver
    Device Doctor Portable
    Doubledriver
    Unknown Devices

    File Tools
    7zip
    Free Commander
    HjSplit
    Recuva
    Simplyzip (For.ace)
    Sumatra PDF
    Super Copier
    Ultrasearch
    Universal Extractor
    Unlocker

    Utility Suites
    Nirsoft Launcher
    Sysinternals
    Iobit toolbox

    ABR (Activation Backup and Restore)
    AutoRun (Regedits)
    Autoruns
    BIOSAgent
    Command Prompt
    Default File Associations Fixes
    Defraggler
    IconCache Rebuilder
    Iobit Uninstaller
    Parted Magic
    Process Monitor
    Reenable
    RegOwnit
    Reprofiler
    Reset TCPIP
    Restarter
    Revo uninstaller
    Run
    Safe MSI
    SIW
    Smart Utility
    Speccy
    Teamviewer
    Token Restore
    winsock repair

    Antivirus Tools

    Antivirus Uninstallers
    Avast Antivirus
    Avira Antivir
    Clamwin
    Emsisoft Emergency Kit
    Gmer
    HijackThis
    JottiQ
    Kaspersky Virus removal tool
    Malwarebytes
    Oldtimers OTL
    Rkill
    Sophos Antirootkit
    Stinger
    Superantispyyware
    Turn Off Bonjour
    Virus total uploader
    Wild Tangent Remover

    NetFramework
    Ninite Various Installers
    Office Compatibility Pack
    Visual C++
    WinXP SP3 installer

    Live distros:

    Kon-Boot
    Puppy Linux
    the Ultimate Boot CD
    Trinity Rescue Kit
    Ultimate Boot CD for Windows

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