Download SmartClose

One of the things I recommend prior to doing any audio or video editing is shutting all unnecessary applications down. A few years ago, a freeware application called EndItAll was the perfect solution for this; it shut down everything you didn't need running without turning off important system services. EndItAll now costs about $6 from or you can subscribe annually for access to all the PC Mag downloads for $20. There's nothing wrong with the price, EndItAll is useful, although slightly limited in some feature areas. Last week I found SmartClose. It does the same thing and a whole ton more (Lockergnome beat me to posting it yesterday) for free. In addition to shutting down open applications, SmartClose takes a snapshot of everything currently open, so you can relaunch to your previous state when system intensive operations are complete. Specify a list of protected apps that never get closed by SmartClose. Close IE and Windows Explorer windows and restore them when you finish with an operation. And for those pesky programs that don't want to shut down gracefully, SmartKill will free up your system resources in cooperation with the SmartClose action. [Windows 9x/2k/XP $0.00]