I guess it depends on the user, and the version of Windows, but I no longer use a third-party antivirus but stick with Windows Defender. It's much improved over its early versions and is the only "set it and forget it" that pretty much lives up to that description as close to 100% of the time as possible. If I'm using free antivirus then I stick with Panda Cloud these days. I do not like Avast free because of the need for annual updating of the license, which I've seen people skip doing (and they skip doing this sort of thing for paid products, too, even with multiple nag e-mails about impending expiration or "you're past expiration") and AVG has become a nightmare of false positives. My biggest concern is that the user not have to do anything to maintain protection with a far lesser concern about whether detection rate is "very good" versus "excellent."
I always install Spywareblaster as a passive protection, which works quite well and across browsers, and Malwarebytes just in case something should ever slip by.
I love Unchecky and it's become a standard install and I like CCleaner as well (though I do not use nor teach users to use the registry cleaner option).
For the browser or browsers I install (usually Firefox and Chrome - I've never liked any of the Microsoft web browsers so far) I also install the following add-ons, when available:
- Adblock Plus
- Adblock Plus Element Hiding Helper
- Colorful Tabs (Firefox)
- Yonge Street III Theme (Chrome) - Even with the color spash background most users find it much easier to cope with
- HTTPS Everywhere (sophisticated and security minded users only, with SSL observatory feature turned on)
- Ghostery (sophisticated and security minded users only)
- DuckDuckGo Search Engine, set as default (again, sophisticated users who don't wish to have their search behavior tracked)
Ask about pictures. If plans include significant picture taking, filing, etc., then suggest:
a. FastStone Image Viewer (http://faststone.org/FSViewerDetail.htm) This is also an editing suite.
b. GIMP Picture Editor (http://gimp.org/)
c. JPEG Lossless Rotator (http://annystudio.com/software/jpeglosslessrotator/)
d. Bulk Image Resizer/Format Converter (http://sourceforge.net/projects/dinoimages/)
Download and Install latest:
a. PDF X-Change Editor [https://www.tracker-software.com/product/downloads/enduser/pdf-xchange-editor] (my preference)
b. OR Adobe Acrobat Reader
c. Adobe Flash Player
if the client will be doing a lot of work with PDFs. I absolutely hate in-browser PDF viewers if I'm doing a lot of "serious work" with PDFs and I presume my clients will, too.
Ask about file searching habits. If the client is going to Windows 7 or later and was used to searching for files based upon file name they are very likely to be quite frustrated by the differences in file search behavior, particularly file content search setting being on by default. Suggest installing Search Everything (http://www.voidtools.com/) if they search frequently based on file name alone rather than file contents.
If they need an office suite and do not have and will not be purchasing Microsoft Office I recommend Libre Office.