Description : A menu interface for use with portable applications with several of the best already installed, working, and fully portable. More portable apps can be added. Also inbuilt backup function is available and easy to use. Works with any external storage device!
Portable Apps Suite is most probably THE best portable apps menu available. Free, simple and stylish too, this menu has a lot more to offer than meets the eye. The reason I say this is a review of the Suite rather than just the menu, is because you can download it with a set of pre installed portable apps, including the likes of Open Office (Free Microsoft Office compatible office suite), Firefox (Best web browser), Pidgin (Secure IM) , Sudoku (Number Puzzle), Sunbird (Calendar / task manager) and Thunderbird (Email client).
All of these apps are already made fully portable, meaning they won’t lave a trace on the host PC your using. You simply download the suite, select the drive you wish to install on, and your away. It does take a few minutes to install, but it is about 10 or so apps in one go, especially if your including Open Office, so its really quite acceptable.
It has over 40 official portable apps that are on the portable apps website, which have their own portable splash screen. There are however a heck of a lot more apps that are portable than are listed on the site, any of which you can manually add. If your an average user, and often have to use other machines, you may just be fine with the suite. If your a bit more than an average user, and have to use other machines almost every day (ie school, college, work) then you may want a little more than the suite.
A few of my personal must have additions to the standard.
GIMP for example is almost a portable Photoshop, but a lot less system heavy. Some people claim they can even run a PS portable, but GIMP is probably all you really need unless your a real PS pro.
7zip (previously reviewed), considerably better than any other available compression app (May not be true, researching about a new app, but even so, 7zip is the portable apps choice). Compress, encrypt, secure files from anywhere, and decompress too.
Notepad++, all the features that notepad should of always had. Tabbed text files, ability to create and run macros and the ability to display almost every programming language in the same or even better display than in the engine.
There are of course many more portable apps available other than the advertised 40 odd. You can find them by simply searching around, or using portablefreeware.com. It has apps split into categories and even has an RSS feed which alerts you of any updates or newly discovered portable apps. Make sure you read the instructions. Some apps are harder than others to make portable. Then there’s the issue of the portable purists who say an app is not truly portable if it leaves a trace, but anyway, that’s your choice.
Conclusion : The Portable Apps Suite may not have apps split into categories like some launcher menu’s, but with is simplicity, it wins first place in the portable launcher. For those users who want something portable with ease and pretty much no hassel, this is the app for you. Portable Firefox is worth the more than the price of the USB you intend to use it on, really a great app.