New computer going from XP to W7 utilities?

I just got a new laptop with Win 7 pro home.
I’m coming out of XP, so this is new to me.
What utilities do my fellow dopers suggest for a brand new Win 7 machine?
In the past I have run things like:
Spybot search and destroy,
Super anti-spyware
Avast anti virus
some registry cleaner that I don’t recall the name of
etc, etc, etc.
Are those still suggested/recommended for Win7?

I recently made the same leap. I’m using all the same utilities that I used before, and it works just fine.

Microsoft Security Essentials for AV
Spybot if you’re paranoid or cruise a lot of pr0n sites
Registry cleaners are worthless.
Use a sandboxing browser like IE9 or Chrome.

windirstat is a great utility. Helps you see graphically where all your files are, how big they are, and colors them by type. I couldn’t live without it. Great for clearing up space.

“So THAT’S where I hid my 42.3GB porn collection!”


Sandboxing. Essentially confining the web browser (and its plugins) to a low-privileges corral in an attempt to limit the damage of any exploits.

Well these can be run with the present OS also. Windows & supports the all applications of the XP and works effectively with out a issue. It also includes the advanced features that the XP cannot perform and is said to be the best OS.

Reported(attempted signature spam)

Ditto. Finding wasted space is pretty much the only thing it is good for, but it is the perfect tool for that job. (I am very partial to programs that do only one thing. I hate the ones that are bloated with a gazillion features.)

One little thing that peeved me about Win7 was how sleep mode (which is otherwise great) would kick-in even if you had a download in progress. Kind of ridiculous that Microsoft didn’t build-in a way to prevent this without disabling or manually increasing the sleep timeout.

Enter a small, free utility called Coffee that won’t allow your PC to sleep if there is network activity above whatever threshold you set.

Sounds interesting, but I need something just a little different. My problem is that as far as I can tell, there are only two things that will prevent sleep mode under normal circumstances: moving the mouse (or touching the mousepad) and hitting the keyboard. You have identified something that ought to be on that list but isn’t, namely network activity. The missing item in my opinion (and would solve your problem as well) is: changes to the display.

Here are two simple cases to illustrate what I mean: (1) Suppose you are watching a movie. For 30 or 60 minutes or whatever, you stay away from the mouse and keyboard, and Windows thinks nothing is happening, so it goes to sleep. But if something is happening on the screen – either moving pictures in my case or a crawling progress bar in yours – that too should suffice. (2) I work in a school with touch-sensitive SmartBoards. Touching the screen moves the mousepointer, but (apparently because it isn’t actually the mouse itself) Windows doesn’t sense that anything is happening, and right in the middle of class, the pc will go to sleep.

Anyone know of a way to convince Windows that screen activity should prevent sleep mode?

Well, most media player programs will inherently disable sleep-mode when in full-screen mode - or it’s usually an option at least.

The screen activity thing could be problematic, because there are lots of things that produce screen activity that you don’t care about and wouldn’t want getting in the way of sleep mode - screen savers being just one example.

I dunno much about SmartBoards, but if an option isn’t available to make touching the screen prevent sleep, you could always just increase the sleep timeout in the Power Settings to last at least the length of the class.

The problem with downloads is that you’re never really sure how long a download will take, and even if you were, it would be a pain to go in and change the sleep timeout accordingly every time you wanted to start a download and leave your PC unattended.

Windows has an API call to temporarily disable monitor sleep, for exactly the reasons you need it. It’s up to the application you’re using to properly use the API call, though… no call, and it’ll go to sleep.

I feel your pain. When I was instructing IT mandated that all computers in the company have a 5 minute screen saver with password protection. Since I might talk for 30 minutes on one PowerPoint slide this drove all the instructors nuts.
I think it was the threat to fly to home office and kill them all is what got them to make the change so we could teach.

Go to Ninite and take your pick.

Ooooooooooo. I can’t wait to get home.

Registry cleaners are worse than worthless. Don’t touch any with a 10-ft pole.

Why do you say that? I have had excellent luck in the past with them on XP and VISTA machines.

I run BOINC software (World Community Grid in particular), and went in to power options and set this PC and another one to ‘never sleep’. They did, however, continue to sleep after several hours.

I finally poked a little deeper into the options and clicked the ‘Advanced’ button - turns out that ‘hibernate’ has it’s own setting (it looks like 6 hours may be the default) - I increased that and it solved that problem.

What problem did you think they were solving?