I have been doing some travelling lately with my family to visit relatives and just to have a little fun. The problem with travelling when you run your own business means it can be difficult to keep up with what needs to get done and to be able to do it. I used to have an old laptop I would take with me on trips, but a few to many cups of coffee have been spilled on it and it has been dropped a few to many times to be used anymore. Now that it has gone off to the great laptop heaven I have been finding new ways to keep in touch with out carrying around a bulky laptop.

One of the tools I find useful is PortableApps.com. I have several USB flash drives that I was not using anyways, so I installed PortableApps on two of them and take them with me when ever I go away. PortableApps makes it easy to take your computer with you on a USB flash drive. Just plug it into a Windows computer and PortableApps starts up and I have access to Firefox, OpenOffice, Putty SSH, and I always make sure a copy of VNC is on the flash drive.

With these tools I can connect back to my office, find the files I need and can update and fix many problems that my clients need done even when I am not at my office. With many of the applications I use being online already, like Gmail, Google Reader, and Google Docs the portable version of Firefox is often all I need to be able to keep in touch and help my clients. With the right plugins installed on Firefox I can do almost everything I can do from my office. It sure beats carrying around a large laptop with me everywhere I go. If you travel occasionally and don’t want or have a laptop to carry around with you, give PortableApps a try. It sure is a lot easier to carry around a USB flash drive than a big bulky laptop.

Categories: tools