What’s On Your Ultrabook?

Updated on 20 August 2012 by


There are very few things an Ultrabook can’t do. Gaming, video editing, CAD, office work and photo editing to name just a few. Yes, there are some limits within all categories but the Ultrabook is the only type of laptop that gives you access to all these capabilities while still being small and lightweight. Its dynamic range is unlike any other PC.

I thought it would be a good idea for readers with an Ultrabook to tell the rest of us what software is on their Ultrabooks and how it is used. I’ll start by outlining the software I use for my multimedia blogging and web-site management. Note that the Ultrabook is also used as my desktop PC.

Like everyone, I use the web browser a lot. Email, site management, research, Google Plus, Facebook etc but I’m not a total web-app junkie; There are some apps that need to be kept local and the one I’m using right now, Windows Live Writer is my main blog editor. It’s simple, links well to many blog platforms, has built in photo management tools and a good WYSIWYG editor and spell checker. Also part of the Live suite is Windows Live Photo Gallery. I continue to use this as my main photo and image management tool. Paint Shop Pro (an old, lightweight version) is the image editing tool I use for more complex (but not high-end) image editing.

I make a lot of videos when I’m at conferences and trade shows and the tool I’ve been using this year is Cyberlink PowerDirector which has been rock solid and a fast way to get my videos done and uploaded for YouTube. My videos take HD 1080p sources and push 720p to YouTube with cuts, transitions and titles in record time.

While I mostly use Google Docs and Google Drive to edit, store, collaborate and share my docs, I also have Libre Office installed which I mainly use for creating presentations.

Other software..

  • PDF Reader – Foxit Reader
  • Video Conf – Skype
  • DVB-T Television – Terratec Cynergy
  • Intel AppUp as a software store
  • Nero Express 10 DVD software for use with my Samsung DVD writer.

I’ve also got a few site management packages like Putty SSH client, WinSCP, Synergy, KeepPass. For testing games, I use Steam.

It’s not a huge list but as a blogger and website owner, it’s a suite I’m really happy with. But what about you?

Your Software

Anyone doing more serious gaming? CAD work? Data Analysis? Educational Software? Let us all know in the comments below.

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16 Comments For This Post

  1. Jason says:

    What ultrabook do you have?

  2. admin says:

    I’m using the Toshiba Z830 (Core i5 – VPro)


  3. alan says:

    I don’t have an ultrabook yet. Maybe next year’s batch will get me to buy one. Right now, I have a Thinkpad X230 ultraportable. When/if I do get an ultrabook, I doubt I’ll do anything different in terms of software. I’ll just live with the slower performance in exchange for the lighter and smaller design.

  4. Chris says:

    I’m using Adobe Photoshop for image editing, Skype & Windows Live Messenger to stay in contact with my friends when I’m on the road, DropBox for file-sharing and I also play some games (i.e. Diablo 3) :-)

    But my most important program is my “Rainlendar”. A desktop-calender that synchronizes with my iPhone / GMail-Account. My brain!

  5. somebody says:

    Seeing that 14″ screened ultrabooks seem to be the most popular size (at least based on this site), I’m assuming people are just going from 14″-15″ notebooks to 14″ ultrabooks and aren’t going to do anything much different with their software choice.

    This question really just seems to be “what’s on your notebook?”

  6. admin says:

    It’s a good point.
    Are we simply moving from notebooks to Ultrabooks?

    I’m interested in learning about user experiences though.
    How far can an Ultrabook go!


  7. Konradus says:

    I dont have an ultrabook yet, but I plan to replace my 5 year old 14″ laptop with an 13″ ultrabook. I need to be able to use Adobe programs and a bit of CAD (Pro Engineer) and usual surfing and wordprocessing.

    Therefore I am interested in experiences using ultrabooks as a desktop replacement for my exact purposes. Especially how well it performs with HD4000 ivy bridge in CAD.

    It will no doubt be better than what I use right now anyway, probably double performance and half the weight.

    Thank you for this informative site :)

  8. kdas says:

    Not a whole lot of ultrabook owners on an ultrabook site? Are sales that low?

    Anyway, since these ultrabooks don’t have an extremely slow Atom CPU, I’m pretty sure people are just going to treat them as any other notebook. At least that’s how I plan on using one when there’s finally an ultrabook I would buy. Maybe next year.

    There are probably more differences in software and usage among sizes (ie. 11.6″ vs 14″) than between “notebook” and “ultrabook.”

  9. Leekid says:

    Happy owner of a Z830-10F (Core I5), I installed the latest Ubuntu (12.04) with some optimisation and personnalisation. My main usage is :
    -web surfing and website management (firefox and chrome)
    -programming (Eclipse, various HTML, XML or text editors)
    -audio live streaming (Butt or IDJC)
    -audio editing (Audacity)
    -picture editing and creation (The Gimp)
    -chatting (X-Chat, Emesene)
    -File transfer (Filezilla)
    -Watching videos (VLC)
    -Office works (Libre Office)

    For those jobs, my ultrabook is perfect :)

  10. schmo says:

    How’s the battery life compared to Windows 7? Do all the Fn keys work? Does suspend/resume work consistently? Do you get stable 802.11n connections?

    I really wish this site puts some effort into Linux targeted articles. I know Chippy says he gets sponsored by Intel every now and then but I don’t think he has any partnerships with Microsoft.

  11. Leekid says:

    I dont know the battery life on Win7, since I erased it when I got the machine. The average battery life I usually notice is about 5/6 hours (wifi activated, surfing).I don’t use hibernation, but no problem with sleep/unsleep.
    About the Fn keys, all don’t work, but I don’t care, the only ones I use work (screen brightness and volume up/down). I didn’t take time to make the other work, since I don’t care :)
    Never noticed any problem with the wifi connection.

  12. me says:

    That’s unfortunate. If it uses an Intel WiFi chip then there’s a very good chance connecting to 802.11n networks will result in the long standing (years now) stability issues. 802.11a/b/g networks work fine. 802.11n isn’t a draft standard anymore and I think it’s time Intel should make it work properly under Linux.

  13. beemer says:

    I’ve got a Folio 13 two motnhs ago. With a special promotion and the 200€ rebate in Spain it has cost 500€ (without tax).

    I get easily five hours from its battery developing Android software while connected with a3G USB modem, a bluetooth mouse and a Android phone via USB. Fantastic!

    So my software is several utilities, office 2007 and Eclipse with all the Android SDK, libraries, ant, etc. This takes haslf of the SSD space.

    In the remaining 64GB I’ve a Ubuntu Linux vmware virtual machine for those things linux does better, a MacOS Vrtual machine for some iOS developing and some music and videos.

    I’m very happy with this ultrabook because what I need is battery, cpu power (not GPU power) a good jeyboard and portability.

    Waht is bad?: the touchpanel, the buttons are to hard to press.

  14. Soren Porskrog says:

    I am the very happy owner of a Samsung 9 Series 900X3D. Yes Chippy I’ve gone from my HP Notebook to this Ultrabook. As consultant and PhD student I use some fairly heavy software applications in addition to the office applications. My most used software is:
    – Office Pro 2010 (primarily Word, OneNote, PowerPoint)
    – Nuance DPF Converter Pro (converting documents to PDF)
    – PDF XChange Viewer (annotation)
    – Nuance Dragon Naturally Speaking 11 (transcription software)
    – Mendeley (reference library)
    – MindJet’s MindManager (for organising thoughts)
    – QSR NVivo (software for qualitative research)
    – SPSS (software for quants research)
    – Copernic Desktop Search Pro
    – PrepLit (keyword search in PDF files)
    – Skype

    I thought it would be a problem with the limited 128 GBSSD space. But no problem even though I hold more than 2000 articles in my library and a fair number of audio files from interviews. Though, I do not have any videos or photos on my new Ultrabook. I store these file on a server.

  15. intercad melbourne says:

    What CAD software or combination of software is best for the process of designing to eventually manufacturing. I’m new at CAD I have solid works 2010 but I have been reading that CATIA or Rhino might be better for Auto and Aviation. Any help is appreciated.

  16. cadder says:

    I have a Samsung 530u4c-s06 core i7 w/ 6gb of ram, ssd, hd4000 w/ NVidia gt620m and it’s quite choppy using civil3d 2011 (sucks when using dedicated gfx maybe driver issue), plain AutoCAD on the other hand performs well considering it’s just an ultrabook

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