Free Tools that I Use

Here are tools I use on a regular basis. They have attributes I find essential:

  1. They are free.
  2. They do one thing and they do it well.

XPathBuilder: Dynamically searches XML: Bubba Soft

Expresso: Design and test regular expressions before you compile: Ultrapico

WinMerge: Compares files and directories: WinMerge

XVI32: A hex editor. With this I learned about the BOM: Christian Maas

While these tools are great, they can really add to your productivity when you integrate them into Visual Studio. When you right click a file in the solution and use "Open With…" You can add these tools to the list of applications:

I hope you find this useful.

Steve Wellens


  • been looking for a good, free regex windows program.


  • It will even create commented code for you:
    /// <summary>///  Regular expression built for C# on: Wed, Nov 12, 2008, 08:16:58 AM///  Using Expresso Version: 3.0.2766,  ///  A description of the regular expression:///  ///  [Zip]: A named capture group. [\d{5}]///      Any digit, exactly 5 repetitions///  -///  [Sub]: A named capture group. [\d{4}]///      Any digit, exactly 4 repetitions///  ////// </summary>public static Regex regex = new Regex(      "(?<Zip>\\d{5})-(?<Sub>\\d{4})",    RegexOptions.IgnoreCase    | RegexOptions.CultureInvariant    | RegexOptions.IgnorePatternWhitespace    | RegexOptions.Compiled    );

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