Chapter 30. Third-Party Resources and Tools

Microsoft products have spawned a huge third-party following. These third-party vendors make everything from user-level add-ons to administration utilities to developer resources and tools. In fact, the third-party vendors may create more software than Microsoft does when put together. It's unlikely that you'll see everything third-party vendors have to offer. Some of it will fade into obscurity before you even hear about it. Much of this software is high quality. Unfortunately, quality doesn't always guarantee that a significant number of developers will hear about the product — the vendor who yells the loudest often gets the attention of developers.

Although this chapter discusses developer tools, developers often need user- and administrator-level resources and tools as well. Developers actually have the opportunity to have more fun with computers than anyone else does. Not only do developers use more categories of software than anyone else, but they also have the knowledge and skills to use more software. It's important to have a bit of fun now and then, so check out the user- and administrator-level products, too.

This chapter begins with some tips and techniques you can use to locate useful third-party resources and tools. You'll then see reviews of a number of interesting third-party products. As with the Microsoft products in Chapter 29, there isn't any way to discuss all the products out there in a single chapter. In fact, it may ...

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