6 Free Cross-Platform Apps–for a USB Thumb Drive

I’ve posted before about good applications to put on a USB thumb drive, for both Windows and the Mac. If you work on a mobile basis frequently, this is a great way to have any application handy at any time. Recently, I’ve been loading my pocket drive with cross-platform applications. As long as there is a Windows, Mac or Linux system around, these apps let me get work done.

In this post, I’ll round up several cross-platform applications good for your pocket drive. Many of these have very small footprints.


The iScribe e-mail client is downloadable in a small footprint form factor for Windows, the Mac and Linux. Even though it doesn’t take up much space, it has a contacts database and a calendar.

If you want a richer e-mail client, Mozilla’s Thunderbird is much larger in footprint than iScribe, but it is available for Windows, the Mac and Linux.

The Firefox browser from Mozilla is also available for Windows, the Mac and Linux. I use it on all three platforms on a regular basis.

Thinking Rock is personal organizer software for Windows, the Mac and Linux. It’s based on GTD (Getting Things Done) principles, and is good for brainstorming and tracking processes.

While it’s not small in footprint, OpenOffice is a great, free open source suite of productivity applications you can keep with you in Windows, Mac and Linux versions.

If you don’t like to be without your RSS feeds, RSS Gorilla is a good way to get them and organize them. It’s available on all three major platforms.

If you want to stock your USB thumb drive with good Windows and Mac apps, check the links at the top of this post. Especially with the big capacities you can get on these drives for very little money at this point, this is a good way to never be without top software applications.

Do you keep any good cross-platform applications with you on a portable drive?

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