Ultimate List of Free Windows Vista Software & Resources from Microsoft

    • Equation Writer – handwritten mathematical equations convert into a typewritten image
    • Media Transfer copy/stream media from a computer to a Tablet PC
    • Ink Crossword solve 12 puzzles (& download more)
    • Ink Flash Cards helps learning facts or study for an exam
Feeds Plus read RSS feeds in a combined view with notifications for new items. (Support: MSDN)
Ink Desktop a dry-erase board to jot down phone #, directions, or top daily prioritiesy
    • Origami Experience:  Access all media & favorite programs
    • Touch Settings: Config touch screen
    • Sudoku: Popular number game
StickySorter is for brainstorming, planning, and affinity diagramming
Virtual Earth 3D search, browse, & organize local information viewed in 3D
Windows Vista Ultimate Helpful Hints: Guide to mastering the Ultimate operating system
XML Notepad 2007 browse & edit XML documents. (Support: DOC
XML Paper Specification Essentials Pack view, generate & index XPS Docs
AccessChk provides what kind of accesses specific users or groups have to resources including files, directories, Registry keys, & Windows services
Active Directory Topology Diagrammer reads AD configurations using ActiveX Data Objects (ADO), and automatically generates a Visio diagram of your Active Directory and /or Exchange 200x Server topology
Administrative (Group Policy) Templates (.admx) manages registry-based policy settings in the (gpedit.msc) user interface
AeroNotes is a full featured notepad alternative using the Aero Glass technology
Application Compatibility Toolkit contains tools & docs to evaluate and mitigate application compatibility issues before deploying Windows Vista, Windows Update, or a new version of Internet Explorer in your environment.
App-V USB Tool is an add-on to the App-V 4.5 Client. It makes it possible to automatically, or by request, import and register App-V enabled (sequenced) applications into the App-V Client from any USB storage device. (Support TechNet)
AUReset tool contains scripts to fix most Automatic Updates & Windows Update problems.
AutoRuns shows what programs are configured to run during system bootup or login, and shows the order Windows processes them.
Baseline Security Analyzer graphical & command line interface performs local or remote scans for common security misconfigurations: missing security updates, update rollups & service packs published to Microsoft Update. (Support: MBSA Homepage & Visio Connector Tool for MBSA)
Battery Alarm alerts when battery gets low
Battery Saver saves up to 70% of your battery by disabling some greedy features
BGInfo displays relevant information on the Desktop’s background: computer name, IP address, service pack version, etc.
BITS Repair Tool for 32 bit & 64 bit, helps fix the corruption of Background Intelligent Transfer Service (BITS) state files. (Support: KB940520)
Command Reference for automating command-line tasks by using batch files or scripting tool
Cayra mind mapping tool for flushing out design ideas. (Support: MSDN)
Desktops organizes your applications on up to four virtual desktops.
Edison – energy monitoring application to actively control PC’s energy consumption.
FolderShare share files & access computer(s) remotely
Group Policy Log View utility exports Group Policy event data from the system & operational log into a text, HTML, or XML file
Hosts File Manager makes configuration changes to the HOSTS file (add, delete, & edit).
IE7Pro add-on for Internet Explorer includes tweaks to make it friendlier, more useful, secure & customizable. (Support: MSDN)
IE Proxy Manager (TrayIcon) is an easy to use proxy Manager for Internet Explorer and all depending applications.
IconEditor creates icons in multiple formats: 16×16 – 16 color, 48×48-24bit color, up to 128×128-32bit color, along with marking the transparent colors (XOR Mask & AND Mask). (Support: MSDN)
Internet Connectivity Evaluation Tool verify routers support new technologies.
ISO Recorder with DVD Support
IPsec Diagnostic Tool assists troubleshooting network related IPsec failures.
Keyboard Layout Creator create or modify keyboard layouts
Language Interface Packs for English versions
Network Monitor protocol analysis allows capturing, viewing & analyzing network (wired & WiFi) traffic. (Support: TechNet, Command Line Wizard)
OpenType Font File Properties Extension adds property tabs to the fonts dialog box (i.e. font name, origination, copyright, & extended character set code pages)
PrivBar toolbar shows current privilege level (Administrators, Power Users, Users, or Guests)
Process Explorer shows information in two sub-windows, about which handles & DLLs processes have opened or loaded. The top window shows currently active processes, including the names of their owning accounts, the information in the bottom window depends on the Process Explorer mode: in handle mode you’ll see the handles the process selected in the top window; in DLL mode you’ll see the DLLs & memory-mapped files the process has loaded.
Process Monitor shows real-time file system, Registry & process/thread activity. It combines the features of two legacy Sysinternals utilities, Filemon & Regmon, and adds an extensive list of enhancements including rich & non-destructive filtering, comprehensive event properties such session IDs & user names, reliable process information, full thread stacks with integrated symbol support for each operation, simultaneous logging to a file, & more. (Support: TechNet)
PsExec allows executing processes on other systems, complete with full interactivity for console applications, without having to manually install client software. PsExec’s most powerful uses include launching interactive command-prompts on remote systems & remote-enabling tools like IpConfig that otherwise do not have the ability to show information about remote systems.
PsService service viewer & controller displays the status, configuration, & dependencies of a service, and allows you to start, stop, pause, resume & restart them. PsService enables logging-on to a remote system using a different account, for cases when the account from which it doesn’t have required permissions on the remote system.
Release Notes information on deploying & using Vista, including known issues. 
Remote Server Administration Tools 32bit & 64bit support remote management of computers running Windows Server 2008.
SearchMelt, is a Vista Search Folder changed to be generic & able to be shared.  "It’s like Search + XML + Sharing — it’s a whole bunch of melty goodness!"
SharedView Beta connects up to 15 people & get your point across by showing them your screen. (Support: FAQ)
ShellRunas for heavy Explorer users who launch programs under different accounts (similar to RunAs)
Snip IT emails selected text in Internet Explorer using your default email: Gmail, Hotmail & Outlook & Yahoo Mail.
SpeechSaver system tray utility to turn off Speed Recognition after a few minutes with no activity.
Speech Recognition Macros creates powerful macros triggered by voice command to interact with applications.
Speed Launch gives you lightning quick access to all the documents, files, & websites.
Start++ Windows XP Desktop Search allowed the creation of aliases between words or characters with commands & searches.  Example: set up the Deskbar so you could type “g Stuff” to search for the work “Stuff” on Google.  Start++ also launches programs, run scripts with parameters.
SteadyState helps manage shared computers in a school, Internet cafe, library, or at home. (Support: FAQ)
System Update Readiness Tool x32 & x64 checks for inconsistencies in the Windows servicing store which may prevent the successful installation of future updates, service packs, & software.
TCPView shows detailed listings of all TCP & UDP endpoints, including the local & remote addresses and state of TCP connections. TCPView also reports the name of the process that owns the endpoint.
Terminals multi-tab terminal services/remote desktop client. It uses Terminal Services ActiveX Client (mstscax.dll) allowing the control of multiple connection simultaneously.
TweakUAC quickly Turns On & Off (UAC) User Account Control (Support: MSDN)
User State Migration Tool migrates user files & settings during deployments of Windows XP & Vista. USMT captures files & settings from the source computer and then migrates them to a new Windows installation.
Virtual Desktop Manager provides a powerful virtual desktop manager with a full screen thumbnail based preview
Virtual PC 2007 create & run one or more virtual machines (different operating systems), on a single computer.
Vispa tweaking for privacy, security, & system performance. (Support: Channel 10)
VistaTweaker has software, performance, usability & other tweaks to improve the overall experience. (Support: Channel 10)
Visual Round Trip Analyzer – Web page performance visualizer and analyzer tool
WinDirStat disk usage statistics viewer & cleanup tool. (Support: MSDN)
WinHlp32 Help program included in Windows XP. (Support: KB917607)
Windows Automated Installation Kit helps IT professionals customize & deploy Windows Vista. Perform unattended installations, capture Windows images with ImageX, & create Windows PE images.
Windows Installer CleanUp Utility removes a program’s Windows Installer configuration information when experiencing installation (Setup) problems (i.e. problems when adding / removing a program’s component.)
Windows Mobile Device Center enables data synchronization between Windows Mobile Devices & Windows Vista & Vista 64.
Windows Vista Hardware Assessment finds computers on a network, performs a detailed inventory, reports whether a computer(s) can run Windows Vista.

Windows Vista Ultimate Language Packs

    • Chinese (PRC)
    • Chinese (Hong Kong SAR)
    • Danish
    • Dutch
    • English (US)
    • Finnish
    • French
    • German
    • Italian
    • Japanese
    • Korean
    • Norwegian
    • Portugese (Brazil)
    • Russian
    • Spanish
    • Swedish
Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor identifies if a PC is ready for an upgrade to Windows Vista & which features will be able to run on their PCs
ZoomIt screen zoom & annotation tool for technical presentations.
Windows Search 4.0 for 32 bit64 bit updated search component. (Support: KB940157)
Adobe Photoshop Preview Handler for Photoshop (PSD) files
Code Preview Handler for .cs, .vb, .sql, .js files – allows viewing of code files within Explorer & Outlook 2007 (Support: MS Blogger
InkSeine search for files by circling a handwritten phrase within notes 
SearchTogether Internet Explorer Search Collaboration Tool
Image Composite Editor stitches multiple source images into a seamless panorama
ImageResizer PowerToy right-click resizes one or many image files (Support: How to…)
Imagizer simple application to resize a batch of images.
HD View Utilities display & interaction with very large images. (Support: Website
HD Photo Plug-in for Adobe Photoshop supports a wide range of pixel formats (high dynamic range, wide gamut formats) & numerous advanced HD Photo features. (Support: MSDN)
Paint.Net originated as a project at Washington State University, & still developed by Microsoft alumni.
Photo Info allows photographers to add, change & delete common "metadata" properties. (Support: FAQ)
Pro Photo Tools for editing metadata in photographs including latitude, longitude, & other location details.
RAW Codecs handles RAW image files with the same ease as JPEG or TIFF images.
TweakMC – Tweak Media Center
trueSpace 3D authoring package for online shared spaces, & for Virtual Earth.
WebGuide provides remote access to your Media Center from any computer with a web browser, including a cell phone or mobile device.
WMV9 PowerToy configures advanced properties of the WMV9 encoder & decoder otherwise only accessible through registry settings
Chirpscreen interactive screensaver updates with content from social networks (i.e. Facebook, Flickr) – it floats the information across the screen, & allows clicking on the content taking you to the web page or social networking site. (Support: MSDN)
Digital Blasphemy’s Free 3D Wallpapers"really-cool" 3rd party wallpapers (Support: MSDN)
Dual Monitor Wallpapers – Beautiful images "panoramically" stretch across both screens (Support: MSDN)
Exchange Server Team’s 3 wallpapers with new logo
Flittrbook, a WPF screensaver mashup of 3 popular social networking sites: Flickr, Twitter, & Facebook. (Support: MSDN)
Halo 3 Wallpaper
New Zealand Bliss backgrounds & Wallpaper
(RED) Wallpapers raise awareness for people affected by HIV/AIDS in Africa.
Silverlight Team’s “Dusk” DreamSceneStandardWidescreen
Silverlight Team’s Wallpaper – Dawn "Blue" & Dusk "Black" inspired widescreen & 4:3 desktop wallpapers
Virtual Earth Screensaver reads RSS feeds to show interesting Virtual Earth birdseye & satellite images with users’ information
Vista Wallpapers by Hamad Darwish
Vista’s Winning Wallpapers from Microsoft Singapore
Wallpapers from Microsoft Employees: Michael Swanson & Mikhail Arkhipov’s 1920 x 1200 (16:10 "widescreen") & 1600 x 1200 (4:3 "standard"), Peggi Goodwin’s Gorgeous Nature Images (various)
Wallpapers & Tool from MSN – 100’s of Free Wallpapers & Wallpaper Creation Tool
Xbox 360 "Jump in" Holiday Wallpaper800 x 600 & 1024 x 768
Yule Log Visualization for Windows Media Player
GAMES for Windows Vista from MSN’s Game Zone
Go (traditional Chinese board game), Hua Rong Dao Game & Rubik’s Cube Game from Microsoft’s Xu Wang
Sudoku Game from Microsoft’s Carlos Aguilar Mares
Windows Pranks:
    • April Fool’s Day Prank wait until the assigned time & runs one of two (or both!) effects:  Desktop Zoom In/Out & Desktop Rotate!
    • Halloween Prank involving "dripping animated blood down a victim’s screen"
Easy Transfer automatically copies files, photos, music, email & settings to your Windows Vista based PC. 
Malicious Software Removal Tool (32 & 64 bit) detects & removes infections by malware.
SyncToy helps copy, move, rename, and delete files between folders & computers.
Windows Live OneCare service has been upgraded to support Windows Vista.
Windows NT Backup – Restore Utility restores backups made on Windows XP, & Windows Server 2003.
Fingerprint Reader – DigitalPersona Password Manager 2.0 (Support: How to . . .)
Habu Gaming Mice Drivers & Firmware 
Keyboard IntelliType 6.3 for Vista & Vista 64
Mouse & Trackball IntelliPoint 6.3 for Vista & Vista 64  (Support: How to . . . )
Webcams LifeCam 2.04 
XBox 360 Controller & Wireless Gaming Receiver for VistaVista 64 (Support: DOC
DebugView monitor debug output on a local system, or any computer on the network via TCP/IP. It displays both kernel-mode & Win32 debug output, so you don’t need a debugger to catch the debug output your applications or device drivers generate, nor do you need to modify applications or drivers to use non-standard debug output APIs.
Debug Diagnostic Tool assists in troubleshooting issues such as hangs, slow performance, memory leaks or fragmentation, & crashes in any Win32 user-mode process.
Debugging Tools for Windows – used to debug drivers, applications, & services on systems running both 32 bit & 64 bit versions of Windows.
Fiddler HTTP & HTTPS Website Debugging PowerTool supports viewing & modifying HTTP & HTTPS traffic. It also can be saved to Visual Studio WebTest files.
neXpert add-on helps identify common web performance issues 
Image Colorizer demonstrates how to write an application for colorizing digital photos using the inking support provided by Tablet PC APIs.
LUA Buglight helps developers & IT Pros (sysadmins) identify specific causes of admin-permissions issues (a.k.a. LUA bugs) in desktop applications.
PowerShell & PowerShell 64 command-line shell & scripting language allows managing computers via commands or scripts, improving productivity through system automation. (Support: Website)
Graphical Help File (including cmdlet help & the About topics) in a fully-searchable, graphical format (a standard Windows .chm file). Also included in the help file is the VBScript to Windows PowerShell Conversion Guide & a collection of PowerShell Tips of the Week.
PowerGUI is an extensible graphical administrative console for managing systems based on Windows PowerShell. The tool allows to use the rich capabilities of Windows PowerShell in a familiar & intuitive GUI console. (Support: MSDN
PowerShell + console embedded in a rich & intuitive user interface. (Support: PowerShell Team)
Product Identification Tool creates a product signature for your installed application.
Robotics Studio is an environment to create robotics applications across a wide variety of hardware. 
Introductory Courseware demonstrates common robotics concepts such as reading sensors, controlling actuators, designing simple behaviors, & having a robot interacting with its environment. 
SQL Server 2005 Express Edition is a free lightweight, & embeddable version of SQL Server 2005. (Support: Books Online)
Storyboard Designer is used to diagram (model) & generate documentation for a storyboard scenario.
Visual Studio 2008 Express Editions (Individual Files or ISO Image) includes:
    • Visual Web Developer 2008 Express
    • Visual Basic 2008 Express
    • Visual C# 2008 Express
    • SQL Server 2005 Compact
    • SQL Server 2005 Express
    • MSDN Express Documentation
Windows Media Center SDK – Documentation, tools, & sample code for developing Windows Media Center applications & services.
    • Media Center Markup Language Preview Tool provides a graphical user interface to craft the command line parameters which can be used with the Media Center Markup Language Preview Tool available with the Windows Media Center SDK.
Windows Movie Maker & Windows DVD Maker Software Developers Kit create & add custom special effects and transitions to Windows Movie Maker; also create custom transitions, buttons, and menu styles to Windows DVD Maker.
Windows Vista SDK includes documentation, samples, and tools designed to help develop applications & libraries using both Win32 & .NET Framework 3.0 technologies. (Also: ISO Image)

About blakehandler

BLAKE was a Microsoft MVP and award winning programmer with over 20+ years experience providing complete Windows and networking support for small to medium sized businesses. BLAKE is also Jazz Musician and Instructor for residential clients on the Los Angeles West Side.
This entry was posted in Windows Vista. Bookmark the permalink.

34 Responses to Ultimate List of Free Windows Vista Software & Resources from Microsoft

  1. nicholas says:

    Hey guys maybe you can help me out i have this Sonic Activation Module that keeps trying to download. every time i start my computer it trys to download. Its not in my computer or atleast i cant find it to totally delete it all. Also a warning comes up and say there is no smartbridge or something like that . How do i take care of these issues?

  2. e. says:

    you have been done perfect work

  3. Corrine says:

    This is a great compilation showcasing all the Microsoft software available to
    Vista users.  I’ve added bookmarks to both this document as well as The Road to Know Where in Connected to Vista Bookmarks (and the original mirrored at Windows Vista Bookmarks). 

    Pingbacks:  Recent "Connected to Vista Bookmarks" Updates and Windows Vista Bookmarks, Recent Updates

  4. Nathan says:

    FYI, the link for Virtual Earth 3D is broken. Virtual Earth 3D (Beta).Thank you, great finds! I’m glad there are people like you to piece these helpful lists together.Sorry, I accidentally posted this on the Office list… tab madness!

  5. Blake says:

    Thanks "no name" — the link has been updated! (^_^)

  6. jeff says:

    hello out there anyone wanna help with this problem?im using windows vista and my D: drive is in the red i’ve tried back up and restore and disk cleanups but it is still way in the red with hardly any memery left. could it be all the upgrades thats on the computer?  any help would be appreciated THANKS full in michigan.

  7. Blake says:

    Sorry "no name" — wish I could help but I’ll need more information (besides a comment isn’t the best method to get support). . .please contact me directly b.handler@hotmail.com

  8. jannick says:

    cool vista looks cool to

  9. PREETHAM says:


  10. Robert Oosterbeek says:

    And the funny part is that I buy a LifeChat headset tomorrow xDThanks btw for the other things (Y)

  11. nikki says:

    im using windows2000 can someone tell me why i cant get msn messenger updated? 

  12. Blake says:

    Windows 2000 does not support Direct X video — so there are many "fun" graphical programs that are not supported in Windows 2000 . . . but it’s a great operating system for business applications.

  13. Carlos says:

      -I was download photos from a messenger e-mail, but appeared message:"Not available in your language, intent in english or spanish,I’m brazilian, my sender ask me if I have Photo Shop, wich is part of Office, I don’t work, now, with piracy, then, I have the Vista Ultimate in the lap, with minimun processor 3400+(Mobile AMD Sempron-1.8 GHz-256KB L2 cache).
    No stopped, put more 512 Kbytes (was with one Giga, wich down to 880 in the windows Vista Ultimate)…Am I right write?I think you will understand all of those words, my english is poor, study when children with fifteen years, now forty eight years old, but roll and rock again with Bill…(nice guy)!
      -wich are the steps to see the images that arrive with Messenger beta? Or have to buy Office..Thanks american and other nationalization’s people!
    Obrigado por proporcionar esta página com estes softwares grátis, vou adiionar aos meus favoritos, alguma opinião sobre o que baixar?Vi que tem muita coisa boa, tipo, codinome orcas, etc…

  14. jdavis1137 says:

    I received an email from Japan.  I read the email as it was in English, But it had a download file, photos, and I could not open it.
    The file type was, U;PI with a bar across the top of the "I".  Any idea or software on how I can open that photo file to se the pictures.     Thank you

  15. Unknown says:

    I was download photos from a messenger e-mail, but appeared message:"Not available in your language, intent in english or spanish,I’m brazilian, my sender ask me if I have Photo Shop, wich is part of Office, I don’t work, now, with piracy, then, I have the Vista Ultimate in the lap, with minimun processor 3400+(Mobile AMD Sempron-1.8 GHz-256KB L2 cache).
    No stopped, put more 512 Kbytes (was with one Giga, wich down to 880 in the windows Vista Ultimate)…Am I right write?I think you will understand all of those words, my english is poor, study when children with fifteen years, now forty eight years old, but roll and rock again with Bill…(nice guy)!
      -wich are the steps to see the images that arrive with Messenger beta? Or have to buy Office..Thanks american and other nationalization’s people!
    Obrigado por proporcionar esta página com estes softwares grátis, vou adiionar aos meus favoritos, alguma opinião sobre o que baixar?Vi que tem muita coisa boa, tipo, codinome orcas, etc…

  16. Unknown says:

    how can I download a windows software from the internet?!!!!

  17. Devon says:

    when i try to download a msn that is compatible with my vista, thoguh i no that it wont work properly but it will work a little bit better than the other ones, it asks for a code. this means that i have to text them which has now run out my credit and it didnt even work. so i have no msn and no crdit. i odnt no were to go to get a msn that compatible with vista and that i odnt have to text a code for.

  18. teresa says:

    how can i get a CIF single chip downloaded on my comp as i hav windows vista n it keeps cumin up that i dont hav it

  19. blue says:

    hi my pc have vista home premium how can i install ultimate by net?thanksbest regards

  20. janette says:

    i have windows xp i have lost all my contact lists they have gone not deleted i cant add or see who of my contacts are now help someone wat do i have to do to get the contacts back to my msn page

  21. Ali says:

    bune ya

  22. irtiza says:

    I have windows xp home premium….. I am havng a problem that……An Unauthorized change waS MADE to windows that will result in limited windows functionality. Use the link below to solve the problem.> Learn more online> close

  23. askar says:

    hi buddies,one thing i want to know,the details as follow as i have a vista home premium trial version. whenever im going to open that any kind of files,one notice has coming all the time. its asking 25-charactor product key. th problem is i cant save any kind of document.pls find solution and given me. thanks to my buddies

  24. hugh says:

    what is the best program on here lol cos there is a lot of choice.and just to say ty for all f them x

  25. Windows Live™ says:

    I have Office Proffesional-2007, which I bought & installed on my machine but it keeps asking to Get Original and I can’t download anything from within programs ie Access & Excell. What has to be done??

  26. Chloe says:

    is there any free downloads to make sims 3 work ?

  27. Evan says:

    this stuff is pretty cool. i got windows vista ultimate 64bit OS my computer is an alienware m15x 2.4ghz 500GB harddrive 6GB memory i downloaded a couple stuff here. it works. to the person who thinks microsoft has a download to make Sims 3 work on there computer, there retarted. look the company that manages sims has to release an update to make it compatiable with there version.

  28. crystal says:

    how can i download windows software by internet?brgds

  29. Thomas says:

    To upgrade your Windows, visit the microsoft website. For game patches to make certain games work with your version of Windows, visit the publisher’s website or fileplanet, ign, or gamespy. There may or not be a patch depending on the developer’s support (or, lack of) for the game. If you have a trial of anything, the safest and legal way is to purchase the full version.

  30. PATIPON says:

    How I can download free parser generater software that I can run on windows VISTA ?

  31. abhi says:

    hi .. .. In Windows Vista whenever you hover your mouse cursor over a Desktop icon, it shows a cool transparent rectangle over the icon any way of getting it in XP.. i am usin XP sp 2.. PLS HELP

  32. Fernando says:

    Hello Handler!!!Don’t you have anything for Windows 7?Thanks.

  33. paul says:

    where can i get free windows vista and replace windows 7

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