I talk about the software I use most often and that I make sure to take with me when diagnosing computer problems.
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Listen to the podcast: What’s on Your Nerdstick?
This is Leo Notenboom with news, commentary and answers to some of the many questions I get at askleo.info.
I was asking myself the other day, what programs I run the most often. Or more specifically, what programs do I use most frequently when diagnosing various and sundry computer related problems and issues.
In other words, what program goes onto my USB memory stick, or “nerd stick”, first, to take with me?
At the very top of my list is Process Explorer, by the folks at Sysinternals.com. For one reason or another, I find myself using it nearly every day.
I used to tell people that it’s like Windows Task Manager, on steroids, but that really doesn’t do it justice. Some of the things you can to with Process Explorer include:
- find out who’s using all the CPU. Or Memory. Or bandwidth. Or several other system resources.
- find out who WAS using all the CPU a few minutes ago.
- Determine the command line used to start any process
- Determine which Windows services a given process is providing
- Figure out who’s got that file open
- List a process’s tcp/ip connections
- Recent versions have even included an ability to look at the human-readable strings
that a process’s executable, or memory, contains.
That’s really just a sampling … there’s much more, and I’m certain that there are capabilities that I’ve yet to discover.
Process explorer can be configured to completely replace Task Manager – I recommend it.
Sysinternals.com has a number of useful, and high quality, techie tools. And like Process Explorer, most of them are completely free. Check it out.
I’ll touch on some of my other recommended and most used tools and applications in future podcasts.
I have links to sysinternal’s process explorer with the show notes for this podcast. Visit askleo.info and enter 8712 in the go to article number box on the home page. While you’re there, leave a comment and tell me your most valuable geek tool – I’d love to hear from you.
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