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I’ve just staggered in from running the London Mile down the Mall which, if you don’t know it, you may have seen on TV as it’s the tree-lined avenue that leads to Buckingham Palace.  I did this along with my daughter and some of our friends for Sports Relief, a very worthwhile cause and it was brilliant fun with some people on stilts, others dressed up as everything from tigers to bottles of ketchup and a great atmosphere. 

Back at my desk, I have a few cool, no-cost tools for you this week – some of which you may have heard of but nevertheless I am always recommending them so I know that not everyone has come across them. 

The first is my favourite ever unzipping utility, 7-Zip, which performs when other unzipping tools get stuck, report broken downloads or simply don’t work.  7-Zip is an absolute life-saver and you can download it here: 

Then there is an extremely useful online facility for converting your files from one format to another, whether you want to save a WAV file as an AVI, an MP4 as an MP3 – this handles all media types. You can find YouConvertIt here but make sure you don’t click on any of the download links – this is an online facility and those links simply take you to those annoying software downloads you simply don’t want.  Despite that, I still rate this site for its sheer ease of use: 

Then there is a good Word to PDF converter which works just as well as paid versions and has some features you usually only find in those.  Useful if you prefer to work in Word rather than Open Office or even as an addition: 

Finally, IrfanView is an excellent tool you can download for image manipulation, editing, viewing etc etc – a lightweight alternative to much more complex alternatives and always works brilliantly for me.  You can download it here: 

That’s it for this week – please do let me know if there are utilities/topics you’d like me to focus on in these Weekend Takeaways and otherwise have a great week!