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Top 20 Software Picks for Windows XP

written by: Arnold Zafra•edited by: Michele McDonough•updated: 5/25/2011

If you're a Windows XP user still looking for some great software to use, here's our top 20 software picks. The list contains both free and paid software for Windows XP. The free Windows XP software list also includes download links.

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    Top 10 Paid Windows XP Software

    Microsoft Office Home and Student 2007 - Includes 2007 versions of Excel, PowerPoint, Word, and OneNote with improved automatic Document Recovery and the Document Inspector tool. These tools remove personally identifiable information from all of your documents. Office 2007 also features an improved help system that includes online tutorials and more.

    QuickBooks Pro 2009 - Lets you perform various tasks including employee payment and salaries, invoicing, bill tracking and check-writing. This software helps you track sales and expenses and lets you share this information in Word and Excel data format. In addition, QuickBooks Pro 2009 lets you easily create professional looking custom forms.

    MacAfee Internet Security 2009 - One the industry's most popular spam protection programs for your PC. This utility lets you keep your inbox free from unscrupulous emails. Its features include Quickscan, Age Appropriate Searching, and Anti-virus/Anti-Spyware and Anti-phishing utilities.

    Norton Internet Security 2009 - If you're not a fan of MacAfee, then chances are you're a Norton user. This software is also a popular PC security application, providing up-to-the-minute protection for your PC. It helps you fight off viruses, worms, bots, spyware and other malicious programs that threaten your PC's security.

    Adobe Photoshop Elements - The best photo/image editing software? I hope you'll agree with me on that. Photoshop Elements allows you to enhance your photos. It lets you share your stories through various photo slide shows which you can share online, or create photo collages which you can print.

    Intuit Website Creator - I know there are many free online website creators available out there on the web. However, Intuit Website Creator is packed with powerful features that will make the task of creating and developing your website an easier and better experience. It lets you create a customizable 5-page website, has a drag-and-drop website creation interface and comes packed with many professionally designed templates. It even comes with a personalized domain name and a 12-month hosting package along with a number of website analytics tools.

    Acronis True Image Home 2009 PC Backup and Recovery - Acronis is a great utility for backing up your PC. It creates a back up of your OS, user settings, applications, and all other data in your PC. It helps you create a reliable backup system which ensures that you can restore the whole system whenever your PC is attacked by a virus or has encountered a system or disk crash.

    Dragon NaturallySpeaking 10 Standard - This speech recognition tool lets you compose emails and instant messages, surf the web, issue a single voice command for deleting and formatting text, and dictate and edit in Word, IE or Firefox.

    Windows Live OneCare 2.0 - This nifty software protects your financial and personal documents from viruses, hackers, and other malicious programs on the Internet. It also lets you automate disk cleaning and defragging, back up your files on external media, and protect your PC from security threats.

    Microsoft Office Professional 2007 FULL VERSION - Since we're listing down the top paid software for Windows XP, Microsoft's Office suite should never be left out. This Professional 2007 release offers a suite of productivity software and database. It contains Publisher, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, Access, and Word.

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    Top 10 Windows XP Free Software - What started as a Microsoft undergraduate student's project has now become one of the best free photo editing tools. boasts of an intuitive and innovative user interface, and it supports layers, unlimited undo, and various special effects. It also contains many other useful and powerful tools.

    Notepad++ - This source code editor is your best alternative to Windows Notepad. It supports various languages and was written in C++. It's a feature-rich text editor which features syntax highlighting and syntax folding, WYSIWYG, user defined syntax highlighting, auto-completion, multi-document creation, and more.

    Grisoft AVG - This free virus protection software offers some basic security protection features including anti-virus and anti-spyware technology, linkscanner active surf shield, security toolbar, web shield anti-root kit, and more.

    Adobe Reader 9 - What can we say? This software is all that you need for reading PDF documents. It has become the global standard for PDF reading and supports almost all PDF standard documents.

    Windows Media Player 11 - The best free media player that you could possibly have. Windows Media Player, which is now in version 11, has proven time and again that a good media player with tons of features can be good as a freeware. WMP plays music and video, and it allows you to view photos. It even gives you access to live streaming radio.

    PDF Creator- This free software lets you create PDF document from within any Windows program. You can use it like a printer in Word, StarCalc, and other Windows application.

    Video Accelerator for YouTube - This software makes YouTube videos stream faster and play smoother. It reduces buffering problems and video interruptions. It also supports 150 other video streaming sites.

    Download Accelerator Plus - This software lets you download contents from the web faster and in a more secured fashion. Its features include pause and resume downloads, video preview, broadband optimization, file shredding, and more.

    GIMP - If you don't feel like spending some hard-earned dollars for an image editing software such as Photoshop, you definitely have to use GIMP. It's the best free alternative to Photoshop and offers almost the same functionalities and tools. It might take you quite a while to learn the GIMP's interface, especially if you have been a long time user of Photoshop.

    Windows Live Writer - Be it in Windows Vista or XP, I really find Windows Live Writer a very useful tool for blogging. It supports various blogging platforms, has a very nice interface, and includes options to view blog posts in web or html format before publishing it to your blog.