Open source tools I can’t work without

Whether it’s for recovery or day to day activities open source has a lot to offer. From simple entertainment software to data recovery there are a lot of options available in the Internet. Here is a list of what I commonly use to get the job done, if you have any recommendation feel free to comment.


Sometimes accidents happen and partitions are deleted or the system may become un-bootable for some reason. Useful for those nasty Windows viruses which may damage the partition table.


PhotoRec was design to recover data from storage media like hard disk and Flash drives alike that may have been accidentally formated or deleted. PhotoRec aims to recover common formats like PDF, HTML MP3 to name a few. When doing a recovery you might only want to recover the actual files that contain the data and not the software it used to run on.


By far the best tool for those who want to re-use hard drives which may or may not contain sensitive data. Instead of just erasing the data DBAN rewrites random data generated by Mersenne twister or ISAAC on the hard drive multiple times. How secure it is?, well it holds several official certifications from government agencies.


Useful for when the user forgets his or her password and has no other way of obtaining the password to the system. It beats other commercial tools I have used previously.


For those who boot into multiple operating systems and need to re-size the primary partition or have to re-size the partition where Windows resides. Some PC manufacturers do not provide an actual CD/DVD, instead the OS is installed in to a partition.


Some tools are offered in the form of an ISO for a reason, meaning they have to burned in to a CD/DVD. UNetbootin allows a USB drive to become bootable with little effort, reducing the amount of CD/DVD’s I have to burn (waste). UNetbootin removes the hassle of having to make the ISO’s bootable, just point to the ISO and UNetbootin does the rest.

  • Chris

    useful list, thanks.

  • Michael Armstrong

    Thank you!!
    but ophcrack didn’t work for me!
    I forgot my password before.
    then I find
    it worked.

  • happykaka

    A few days ago, I had met the headache things that I had forgotten Windows login password. The login screen rejected my passwords. I was frustrated because there was very important data on my disk and I couldn’t reinstall the OS. …………. However, I fortunately got to know the Windows Password Unlocker, which is a professional windows password recovery tool for us to reset windows 7 password instantly yet no data loss.

  • Anddy_2011

    Here are something that mihgt help you! If you forget your user password.
    1. Log into safe mode
    2. Log in as the computer Administrator, “Administrator” for the username
    3. Leave the password blank
    4.Control panel and change the password for your account
    But if you forget your Administrator password.You can only do this:
    1.find a program called Windows password seeker and Download the password seeker
    2. Burn the file to a CD
    3.Boot the locked computer from CD/DVD and remove Windows password
    More Windows password recover tools: