Got a few…
dBpowerAMP is an awesome audio converter. Converting TO mp3 costs, but converting FROM mp3 and converting to and from anything else is freeware and really… who uses mp3 anymore? It’s also the best, fastest, most reliable cd ripper I’ve found yet.
If ya just gotta have yer mp3, try razorlame or all2lame.
Pick up the lame mp3 encoder to use with it here.
Irfanview is good for a media player. Plays lots of audio and video formats. Be sure to pick up the plugin pack for the extra codecs.
k-lite mega codec pack works with almost any video format. This one is for power users. You get more than one player to choose from with it, for all the picky people.
mp3tag is good for editing audio file tags. Doesn’t work as it should with my FLAC files, but if I cycle them through WMA lossless, tag them, then convert them to FLAC the tag sticks and I still have my lossless.
Audio recorder/editor Audacity. I recommend skipping the 1.2.6 stable and getting the 1.3.3 beta. It’s what I use and it rocks.
For compressing and decompressing, I use IzArk.
Infrarecorder is a good freeware cd burner that burns my concert cds gapless.
Gimp is good for photo editing. Not quite PhotoShop, but close enough for me. Check out the texturizer plugin.
Clamwin is a pretty good antivirus.
Spybot is something everyone connected to the internet should have. Takes care of spyware you’ve never heard of.
XChat is good for a freeware IRC chat client. Use it if you’ve been feeling guilty lately about not paying for that mIRC you have.
Mozilla Firefox web browser - Okay, everyone probably already knows this, but I’m saying it anyway. INTERNET EXPLORER IS FULL OF SECURITY HOLES! Honestly, some people still don’t know the only good thing about IE is that you can use it to download Firefox.
OpenOffice is a good free alternative to M$ Works. Has your database, spreadsheet, word processor, power-point stuff, calculator, all that. Opens MS Word files, WordPerfect, Starwriter, all the major formats, and saves as those too if you want.
For a smaller, lighter application that just does word processing, try Abiword.
If I remember any more, I’ll come back. Never, ever, EVER pay for a program before you look for a freeware alternative. The freeware usually works better, uses less memory and… lest we forget… is FREE!