Must Have Apps

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Must Have Apps

Postposted on Fri Dec 26, 2008 2:11 pm

I've taken the liberty of editing the "Must-have" Mac apps down to a smaller list. That thread will be locked and I'd like to have all new suggestions put in this thread. Some of the applications suggested were very narrowly focused and didn't seem like "must-have" for most users, so I did not include them. I have no problem adding them to the list if there seems to be a lot of call for them.

This list will be edited to reflect any additions that are we all feel need to be included. When an app is posted, I would like to see at least 1 or 2 others second it for inclusion before I add it. If you add an app, please include the link and use the BBCode so all I need to do is cut and paste it into the links. I am extraordinarily lazy and hate having to look it up :-).

Free apps are marked with a red (!)

Without further ado:

Must Have Mac Apps


[derFunkenstein]
Adium - Multinetwork IM client, probably the best available for OS X. (!)
The Unarchiver - Uncompresses just about any compression format. (!)
Perian - Must have codec pack for Quicktime. (!)
Connect360 - Allows you to stream your iTunes content to your XBox 360, PS3, Shoutcast, etc.

[ssidbroadcast]
xTorrent - Bittorent Client (!)
Coversutra - Great tool for iTunes providing some functionality iTunes should have included.
NeoOffice - OpenOffice built for Mac OS X (!)
Journler - Note Taking tool, great for students, journalists, bloggers, programmers, etc. (!)
iStat Pro - Widget that monitors just about all System resources (!)

[Thresher]
Transmission - Thresher's preferred Bittorent client (!)
Unison - Thresher's preferred Usenet Client
iStat Menus - Provides at-a-glance system info on the Menubar (!)
Flip4Mac - Quicktime plug-in for WMV files (!)
Popcorn - DVD Copying tool with compression for DVD9 to DVD5
MactheRipper - Used in conjunction with Popcorn, rip your movie to disk, then back up to another. (!)
Toast - Complete DVD and CD burning suite
Firefox - Safari is nice, but it doesn't have plug ins. With FF 3, it has an OS X look and feel. (!)
Handbrake - All in one ripping and converting tool. Newest version will transcode files as well. (!)

[SNM]
Quicksilver - Interface extension and application launcher for OS X

[Acuity]
Diskwarrior - A tool for repairing and recovering disk drives in OS X
VideoLAN Client (VLC) - If this media player can't play it, it cannot be played. (!)

[Norphy]
Burn- Free client for burning optical media (!)
Cyberduck - FTP/SFTP/WebDAV client (!)
Growl - System event notification tool. One of those things you probably didn't even realize you needed. (!)
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Fri Dec 26, 2008 2:20 pm

I realize that there is no real organization on these and I debated going with alphabetical with the apps, but I wanted to give credit to the people that pointed them out.

I may take a stab at organizing these a bit better once we get some feedback.
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Fri Dec 26, 2008 2:37 pm

Actually this is fine except for two things:

- er, you spelled my name wrong?

- so in order for an app to be added, it has to be suggested via PM by TWO separate people? I'm okay with that, but since this thread will be locked, I'm going to assume that the suggestions are supposed to be submitted with a Private Message, right?
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Fri Dec 26, 2008 3:04 pm

ssidbroadcast wrote:- er, you spelled my name wrong?

Don't worry, he spelled his favourite torrent client wrong as well.
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Fri Dec 26, 2008 3:07 pm

One lousy error and someone catches it immediately..... :-)

No PMs are necessary, all suggestions can be placed in this thread. The top post will be edited to add new content listed in the comments below. I just want some sort of confirmation process, whether it's a PM or a message in response to the in-thread comment. In some cases, I may go ahead and add something if it's obvious to me it should have been on the list. While I have final say, I am not above putting on suggested software from people as long as there is someone else seconding it. What I want to try to avoid is having some specialty software put on the Must Have list. I also want to avoid having someone come on an pimp for some software that no one has heard of.
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Fri Dec 26, 2008 3:09 pm

Meadows wrote:
ssidbroadcast wrote:- er, you spelled my name wrong?

Don't worry, he spelled his favourite torrent client wrong as well.


Looks okay to me...
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Fri Dec 26, 2008 3:50 pm

Thresher wrote:
Meadows wrote:
ssidbroadcast wrote:- er, you spelled my name wrong?

Don't worry, he spelled his favourite torrent client wrong as well.


Looks okay to me...
Transmission.
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Fri Dec 26, 2008 4:08 pm

lordtottuu wrote:Transmission.



DAMMIT. I must have looked at that a hundred times after he mentioned it, and still didn't see it.
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Mon Dec 29, 2008 9:16 pm

I just realized that i have a mac and yet my name is not on that list ;)

So, here are my pics that have not yet been mentioned :

- Office 2008 / Entourage - Because it's the only damn e-mail client that supports Exchange server. (Can't wait for 10.6 to get rid of this)
- Apple Remote Desktop - the BEST VNC client out there HANDS DOWN. I have yet to find a VNC client for Windows/Linux that has the power of ARD. It takes the pain out of VNC.
- Azureus/Vuze - I'm really surprised this hasn't been mentioned before. While Transmission is pretty and all, it pales in comparison to Azureus when it comes to plugins, settings available AND transfer speeds. Azureus supports the DHT tracker so it will always find more peers compared to simple torrent clients like Transmission and therefor it will always transfer at faster speeds.
- PLEX/Boxee/XBMC - I like PLEX the most out of all 3. Basically if you wanna use your mac as a media player for you HDTV, you need one of these. Highly recommended.
- EyeConnect - Better than Connect360. Basically does the same thing : provides a UPNP server for all your media but its compatible with more devices(not just the 360) and an all around better solution.
- MacFUSE + NTFS3g for OS X plug in - Because sometimes you get an NTFS formatted disk on your desk and you need to copy some music/movie/whatev on it.
- CrossOver Games for MAC - Steam running natively on your mac. Nuff said.

So umm, those would be my additions to the list.. :)

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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Mon Dec 29, 2008 9:53 pm

I suggest OnyX. I can't believe it hasn't been mentioned yet...
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Tue Dec 30, 2008 7:23 am

adisor19 wrote:- CrossOver Games for MAC - Steam running natively on your mac. Nuff said.



WOW So that how you get Steam to run! So umm I see their list is pretty small what about new games, etc? Like what is the limitation? Can it play any game found on Steam?


I am very skeptical because they tout it as making World of Warcraft OSX, everyone knows that Blizzard has always supported the Mac gamers and made their games run natively. So the whole "works with WoW" is BS. You dont need it for WoW.
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:09 am

so far on the Xover Games trial, I have installed Steam and played successfully Portal (DX8 mode), Max Payne, Max Payne 2, HL2 (DX8 mode), Geometry Wars, and GTA Vice City.

Not sure what all that means for newer Steam games like L4D.

Xover Games is *also* a Linux product, and that's why they need WoW compatibility.
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:48 am

I've only tried it with HL2 and it worked perfectly with no glitches whatsoever. Officially they only support that small list you mentioned, but unofficially CrossOver works with many more programs than mentioned.

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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:15 am

So I see the pro version is 30 bucks more AND includes the Games version. What does the Pro give me in addition to just the games?

(I am already contemplating purchasing it because I am a huge Steam fan and most of my games are tracked with Steam. I just want to know should I just go for the games version or the Pro version if there is some added beni's)

Also for those of you that use it whats their support like? How often do the upgrade the client? How often do they add new games? ETC........
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:40 am

tanker27 wrote:So I see the pro version is 30 bucks more AND includes the Games version. What does the Pro give me in addition to just the games?

(I am already contemplating purchasing it because I am a huge Steam fan and most of my games are tracked with Steam. I just want to know should I just go for the games version or the Pro version if there is some added beni's)

Also for those of you that use it whats their support like? How often do the upgrade the client? How often do they add new games? ETC........


Well the Pro version is geared towards general Apps with an emphasis on Office 2007.. While the Games one is basically for running the most popular PC games.

Since you're more interested in running games, I'd go for that one.

Adi
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Tue Dec 30, 2008 12:46 pm

I seem to recall Pro including support incidents whereas Games doesn't.
I'm not sure though, since I got both the apps on their free download day -- but forgot to get registration codes! :( Matters a little less when you've got a laptop with X3100 integrated graphics, though. I can play Civ 4: Colonization and that's about it of what I've tried so far.
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Wed Dec 31, 2008 10:04 am

Can I get some seconds for some of the apps mentioned above? I'm good with adding Onyx, I should have added that to begin with, but I'm not familiar enough with most of the others.
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Wed Dec 31, 2008 10:30 am

Onyx yeah, I'll second that. But I lost a Windows partition to what I believe were bad writes thanks to ntfs-3g not even 6 months ago. No way I'm going to try that again any time soon.

I haven't tried any of the others.

Oh, uh, anybody up for some NetNewsWire? The price is right and the features are great.
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Wed Dec 31, 2008 2:01 pm

Organized - iCal widget (free)
NoobProof - easy firewall config tool (free)
WaterRoof - advanced firewall config tool (free)
SMCFan Control - control fan speeds (free)
Finances OSX - financial calculator (free)
WallPaper Clock - nifty wallpaper on your desktop (free - Mac version)
u Torrent - beta Mac client (free)
iStumbler - war driving tool (free)
XSlimmer - remove gigs of data to free up space
ClamXav - check dodgy files and email sent by Windows users (free)
Coconut Battery - battery info utility (free)

Media Link - stream media to your PS3
Quinn - Tetris clone (free)
World of Goo - great game
Scumm VM - play classic Lucas Arts adventure games (free)
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Wed Dec 31, 2008 2:27 pm

MacUser wrote:Organized - iCal widget (free)
NoobProof - easy firewall config tool (free)
WaterRoof - advanced firewall config tool (free)
SMCFan Control - control fan speeds (free)
Finances OSX - financial calculator (free)
WallPaper Clock - nifty wallpaper on your desktop (free - Mac version)
u Torrent - beta Mac client (free)
iStumbler - war driving tool (free)
XSlimmer - remove gigs of data to free up space
ClamXav - check dodgy files and email sent by Windows users (free)
Coconut Battery - battery info utility (free)

Media Link - stream media to your PS3
Quinn - Tetris clone (free)
World of Goo - great game
Scumm VM - play classic Lucas Arts adventure games (free)



In order to get your name up there, i aprove of :

- SMCFancontrol - a very usefull app that tells you at a glance what temp your CPU is at and how fast the fans are spinning. Indeed, very essential for laptops.
- CoconutBattery - excellent tool to diagnose a failing battery. Use it to record bat capacity daily and use it as proof at the Apple store in case your bat capacity is really low.(i did and got me 2 free batteries replacements)

I don't think the rest of the apps quality as essential.. especially no utorrent. Azureus is still the best torrent client out there all platforms confused

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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Wed Dec 31, 2008 2:32 pm

Nice list, but let's look at "must have" as apps that all Mac Users should have, not a apps that are necessary for certain groups of geeks. :P
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Tue Jan 13, 2009 11:14 am

http://www.smashingapps.com/2009/01/06/ ... seful.html

Some of what we've already discussed are on this list - including Burn, NetNewsWire, Onyx, and Cyberduck. Some of the others, like Name Mangler, look really useful on occasion.
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Tue Jan 13, 2009 12:18 pm

Oh man...I have been looking for this! "Deeper allows you to enable and disable the hidden functions of Finder, Dock, Dashboard, Exposé, Safari, Login window and many Apple’s applications."

I saw it on a contractors Mac but I never caught the name....now I know!
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Tue Jan 13, 2009 12:37 pm

tanker27 wrote:Oh man...I have been looking for this! "Deeper allows you to enable and disable the hidden functions of Finder, Dock, Dashboard, Exposé, Safari, Login window and many Apple’s applications."

I saw it on a contractors Mac but I never caught the name....now I know!

Also try Secrets.
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Tue Jan 13, 2009 1:06 pm

WOW thanks SNM
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Tue Jan 13, 2009 4:21 pm

Thresher please add "Organized" the iCal Widget to the list (suggested by MacUser).
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Tue Feb 03, 2009 4:58 am

I've just mentioned it in another post but I think that Carbon Copy Cloner should perhaps be in this list. It's essential if you're managing a lot of Macs and useful if you need to make an image of your hard drive.
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Fri May 15, 2009 5:26 pm

I don't see any freeware image editing apps on this list. I was trying to help a friend today add captions to images for use in creating a photo slideshow. I ended up using Paintbrush 1.2 (still on Tiger) and it was not very intuitive. There doesn't seem to be a lot of free image editors from my somewhat quick googling.

Seashore looks promising. Perhaps that would have been better than Paintbrush.
Gimp requires X11 and is overkill for most uses.
ImageWell is relatively cheap ($20)

Besides that, Acorn, Pixelmator, Iris, PS Elements, etc are all $50+. Am I missing something? Is Seashore the closest thing to Paint.NET for Mac?

Alternatively, know of any free apps for making good looking slideshows?
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Fri May 15, 2009 5:31 pm

Well, Seashore is based on the GIMP (at least, that's how it started in 2005), so if one is overkill, surely so is the other.

Paintbrush is an MSPaint competitor, so it's not going to be very useful.

My image manipulation app of choice for Mac is GraphicConverter. It basically slits the price difference of ImageWell and Pixelmator, sliding in at $35, and it does everything I ever needed. That said, I have never needed much beyond what iPhoto provides. It used to come bundled with G4 towers, iMac G4s, and eMacs, so it's pretty well-known in the OS X-iverse.

Oh, and Picasa is available in a Mac version as well.
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Re: Must Have Apps

Postposted on Tue Jun 30, 2009 12:18 pm

Colloquy I'd say is the best mac IRC client that isn't cli based, I'd use it over adium's IRC functionality easily
http://colloquy.info/

Also a note on xTorrent - I've seen it banned from almost every private tracker I go to. Transmission used to get similar treatment but seems to have turned itself around
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