There's a whole world of excellent free apps out there. Here are some favorite free downloads for Windows users, whether you're running Windows 8, Windows 7 or XP.

1. Skitch
Skitch is an easy-to-use standalone screen capture and image editing tool by Evernote, Skitch allows users to quickly edit and annotate screen caps, and then save or share them online. Skitch's emphasis is clearly on ease of use, with a clean, simple interface; the toolbar on the left side of the app puts all your editing tools within easy reach. Images can be saved locally, uploaded to Evernote, or shared to Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.