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Cool tool for compacting Flash Drives / USB Drives

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Portable Apps has a great little tool to compress all of the progams and .dlls on your Flash DriveFlash Drive to help save (potentially a lot) of space. Normally I've been manually compressing them myself for years using UPX, and a small registry hack I made so it's just a right-click affair, but this program has built-in UPX support amongst other compressors.

Basically you just choose programs on your Flash DriveFlash Drive, and let it do it's thing. In the end you'll not be able to notice any difference as far as the way the programs run (some actually start faster) and you'll have more free space for other stuff on the same Flash DriveFlash Drive once it's done. It's win-win. Smile

And to top it off, it's 100% free. Clicky

Note: Occasionally some programs will complain after being compressed, or fail to start at all, so to be on the safe side, just make a quick backup before you run it. acronis True Image is a great program to make backups easily. True Image isn't free, but I've been using it for years and it's worth every penny.

If you'd like to do it using my method, there a re just a few steps:

1) Grab UPX from here, (the Win32 console version) and unzip it to your Windows folder.

2) Create a registry key so tha tyou can right-click on programs you want to compress. To do that, open up a new text file (notepad) and paste this into it:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\exefile\shell\UPX - Pack\command]
@="C:\\WINDOWS\\upx.exe --best \"%1\""

Save it as UPXPack.reg, then double click it. Confirm that you want to add it to your registry.

3) Right click in Explorer, any .exe program and you'll see a menu item called "UPX - Pack". Click it, you'll see a black command window flash for a second and go away. That's it. Program has been compressed and you're all done.

The main difference between the two methods is the first one is portable, and can be carried with you on your Flash DriveFlash Drive, while the one I just showed will only work on the computer you just setup to do this.

To optionally expand on what I just showed you is to also add .dll files (which are essentially just programs themselves, basically), and the ability to reverse what you just did, by "unpacking" them. all you need to do for those is to make 2 more .reg (registry) files, and then double-click those to add them to yor registry. Here is the code to paste for those.

Dll Files:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\dllfile\shell\UPX - Pack\command]
@="C:\\WINDOWS\\upx.exe --best \"%1\""


Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\exefile\shell\UPX - Unpack\command]
@="C:\\WINDOWS\\upx.exe -d\"%1\""

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