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Below is a list of software that is either required or recommended for by Keller Williams Realty Corona agents. Some software is recommended (such as Firefox) because the staff and agents have found less problems/more compatibility with it. Required software (such as Adobe Flash and Microsoft Silverlight) is necessare for some Keller Williams technology to function.
In any case, agents who use Keller Williams recommended software will likely run into less problems, and support from staff will be quicker, and less of a headache for everyone involved.
Mozilla Firefox web browser
Mozilla Firefox is a non-profit, extensible, customizable web browser. Although it is the 3rd most-used browser behind Microsoft Internet Explorer and Google Chrome, Firefox is the most-trusted web browser among computer security professionals. We recommend it at Keller Williams Realty Corona because we see the least amount of problems with it. It is not 100% problem-free, but no browser is. Agents should also have Google Chrome installed as a backup browser in case Firefox has issues. Although not terrible, Microsoft's Internet Explorer and Apple's Safari are not recommended, but may also be used as backup browsers. It is perfectly fine to have multiple browsers installed on a computer. In fact, PC users should have Firefox, Chrome, and Internet Explorer installed. Mac users should have Firefox, Chrome, and Safari installed. Also, some websites might not be compatible with a certain browser, so it helps to have another installed to use that website.
Adblock Plus browser extension
Adblock Plus is an ad-blocking extension for Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and Microsoft Internet Explorer. Although ads are extremely important to keeping your favorite websites funded, ads have been known to deliver malicious software. Web ads can also be distracting (sometimes obscuring the content you need to be productive). At Keller Williams Realty Corona, we recommend blocking ads on webpages using Adblock Plus for your own online security and productivity.
Adobe Reader PDF viewer
Everyone needs to be able to read PDFs, and Adobe Reader is the de facto app for doing so. Along with viewing PDFs, Adobe Reader allows you to fill out editable form fields in PDFs that contain them. However, you may not be able to save some PDFs with fields you have filled in, you can only print them. If this is the case, you can install CutePDF as a "virtual printer" that will, esentially, "print" a copy of the filled PDF to a new PDF on your computer. If you need to be able to create PDFs with form fields and/or save data entered into PDFs with form fields, you will need Adobe Acrobat or Nitro PDF.
Adobe Flash Player browser plugin
Adobe Flash Player is a browser plugin that is necessary for Keller Williams Realty Corona agents since CRMLS is built on Flash. Without Adobe's Flash Player plugin installed in your web browser, CRMLS will not work on your computer. Additionally, Flash does not run on iOS devices (and Flash is no longer officially supported on Android devices). Adobe's Flash Player is also what makes YouTube's video playback work.
Note: Adobe Flash Player, like many browser plugins, increase your computer's vulnerability to malicious attacks. It is highly recommended that you update Flash Player when it alerts you to do so. Due to expiration of support from Microsoft for Windows XP, Windows XP users should take extra precaution to keep Flash Player up to date, or uninstall (or do not install) Flash Player altogether.
Microsoft Silverlight browser plugin
Microsoft Silverlight is another browser plugin that allows web browsers to perform advanced tasks. Silverlight is necessary for Keller Williams agents because the eEdge marketing campaigns and marketing materials editor runs on Silverlight. To edit an eEdge 22 Touch, 8x8, 12 Direct campaign element, or to edit an eEdge property flyer, postcard, door hanger, etc., agents will need to have the Silverlight plugin installed. Silverlight is also responsible for Netflix movie playback for desktops and laptops.
Java browser plugin
Oracle's Java is a web browser plugin that allows your browser to run Java "applets". Java applets tend to be outdated methods of providing increased browser functionality (such as file uploading or games) that have since been replaced by more modern and secure HTML 5 standards. Unfortunately, some Keller Williams technologies require Java (such as the photo uploader for KWLS and KW Whitepages). Like other browser plugins, Java is a known vector for running malicious code on users computers.
Note: Java can be dangerous, and really should not be installed on computers is possible. Firefox will even warn users if a website is attempting to run Java, and will block outdated versions of Java from running. Like Adobe Flash Player, Windows XP users, especially, should uninstall (or not install) Java. The office computers have Java installed, and can be used if agents do not wish to install Java on their own computers.
Dropbox online file storage & sync
Dropbox is a cloud storage service. Cloud storage allows you to save files online for access from any computer, phone, or tablet. Dropbox is the most popular among cloud storage services, and extremely reliable. However, a FREE Dropbox account provides the least amount of storage among all cloud services at a paltry 2 GB. Free accounts can be expanded up to 16 GB through referrals, and enabling some features (such as automatic photo uploading). Dropbox's paid accounts are also more expensive than other services. Up to 1 TB (1000 GB) of storage can be purchased for $10 per month. Compare this to Google Drive which provides 100 GB for only $2 per month, or for $10 per month you get 1 TB of storage (10 times more space than 100 GB).
Google Drive online file storage & sync
Google Drive is another cloud storage service like Dropbox. Google Drive is the second most popular cloud storage options, but provides much more for free accounts at 15 GB. As a part of their Google-powered KW.com email, Keller Williams agents also get Google Drive, and 2 times the space of regular, free Gmail accounts - that's 30 GB of free space through your KW.com account. Google Drive also includes Google Docs, Google Sheets, and Google Slides - Google's free, online version of Microsoft Office. Google Drive is somewhat less reliable than Dropbox. You may tend to see more synchronization conflicts and/or delayed synchronization with Google Drive.
Google Photos photo organization & editing
Google Photos is a FREE photo organization and photo editing program for both PC and Mac. It's comparable to Apple's iPhoto, which makes it great for Windows users who lack good photo organization/editing software options (although Apple users may want to continue using iPhoto). Along with basic photo editing, Photos allows you to create branded, photo slideshow movies with music that can be uploaded to YouTube and used for marketing purposes.
CutePDF Writer print & convert to PDF file (Windows)
CutePDF Writer is a FREE and ESSENTIAL app for Windows users. CutePDF Writer installs a software (or "virtual") printer on your computer that allows you to "print" any document, photo, webpage, etc. to a PDF file on your computer's hard drive. Basically, for any file that you can print a physical cope, you can instead save it as a PDF file, or convert existing files to PDF. This function is necessary for real estate agents since you will sometimes receive a contract scanned in an image file format (JPEG, TIFF, PNG, etc.). However, digital signing platforms such as DotLoop will ONLY accept PDF files. With CutePDF Writer, you can convert a contract sent to you in an image format (such as JPEG) to PDF format for uploading to DotLoop. You'll save time by not having to explain to your participating agent why they need to re-scan documents to you as a PDF file, and using CutePDF Writer is just as easy as printing or saving files as you normally do.
Note: Apple computers already have this feature built-in. You DO NOT need to install PDF software if you own a Mac.
Note: When installing CutePDF Writer on a Windows PC, pay close attention to what is installing. Several other junk apps (such as the Ask.com Toolbar) are bundled with the software, so de-select them when installing CutePDF Writer. You can also go to the IT Tips page about installing CutePDF.
Microsoft Office Home & Student 2016 productivity suite (Windows)
Microsoft Office is the de facto standard for productivity software. Microsoft Home & Student 2016 included Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote. The Home & Student edition does not include Outlook (email, contacts, calendar). Although Microsoft Office is recommended for Windows users, users inexperienced with productivity software may want to try and learn Google Docs first, as Microsoft Office has many features that most people won't use, and can over-complicate things. Microsoft Office Home & Student 2016 can be purchased for $150 (one-time payment), or Microsoft Office 365 at a price of about $70 per year via a subscription service. Purchasing an Office 365 subscription also allows you to use the Microsoft Office iPad apps (Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for iOS) and Microsoft Office Android apps (Word, Excel, and Powerpoint for Android).
Microsoft Office for Mac Home & Student 2016 productivity suite (Mac)
Microsoft Office for Mac Home & Student 2016 is Microsoft's Office software designed for use on Mac computers. Like the Windows Home & Student edition, this edition included Word, Excel, and PowerPoint (OneNote can be downloaded separately from the Mac App Store for FREE). Also like the Windows Home & Student edition, the Mac version does not come with Outlook (although it does come with the Business edition). Outlook is not recommended anyway, since all Macs come with Mail, Contacts, Calendar, and Reminder apps built-in. Although Apple's iWork apps (Pages, Numbers, and Keynote) can open, edit, and save Microsoft documents, Mac users may want to purchase Microsoft Office for Mac anyway in case any compatibility issues arise between Apple's iWork apps and Microsoft Office documents. Microsoft Office for Mac Home & Student 2016 can be purchased from Amazon.com for about $130.
Apple Pages word processing (Mac)
Apple's Pages is a word processor application (like Microsoft Word), and a part of Apple's iWork productivity suite of software (similar to Microsoft Office). iWork apps are typically MUCH easier to use, with a less complicated, cleaner user interface, at a loss of more obscure, advanced features found in Microsoft Office. Although Windows PCs cannot open or edit iWork documents, all iWork software can export documents as Microsoft Office-compatible documents for use on Windows PCs. iWork apps can also open and edit Microsoft Office documents, although some features may be lost in the conversion. Like Google Docs, below, the online version or Apple Pages can be uses in the browser at www.icloud.com/#pages. All Apple iWork apps are FREE with new Apple hardware purchases, but can be purchased individually for $20 each from the Mac App Store built-in to OS X...considerably cheaper than Microsoft Office.
Apple Numbers spreadsheets (Mac)
Apple's Numbers is a spreadsheet application (like Microsoft Excel), and a part of Apple's iWork productivity suite of software (similar to Microsoft Office). iWork apps are typically MUCH easier to use, with a less complicated, cleaner user interface, at a loss of more obscure, advanced features found in Microsoft Office. Although Windows PCs cannot open or edit iWork documents, all iWork software can export documents as Microsoft Office-compatible documents for use on Windows PCs. iWork apps can also open and edit Microsoft Office documents, although some features may be lost in the conversion. Like Google Sheets, below, the online version of Apple Numbers can be used in the browser at www.icloud.com/#numbers. All Apple iWork apps are FREE with new Apple hardware purchases, but can be purchased individually for $20 each from the Mac App Store built-in to OS X...considerably cheaper than Microsoft Office.
Apple Keynote presentations (Mac)
Apple's Keynote is a presentation application (like Microsoft Powerpoint), and a part of Apple's iWork productivity suite of software (similar to Microsoft Office). iWork apps are typically MUCH easier to use, with a less complicated, cleaner user interface, at a loss of more obscure, advanced features found in Microsoft Office. Although Windows PCs cannot open or edit iWork documents, all iWork software can export documents as Microsoft Office-compatible documents for use on Windows PCs. iWork apps can also open and edit Microsoft Office documents, although some features may be lost in the conversion. Like Google Slides, below, the online version of Apple Keynote can be used in the browser at www.icloud.com/#keynote. All Apple iWork apps are FREE with new Apple hardware purchases, but can be purchased individually for $20 each from the Mac App Store built-in to OS X...considerably cheaper than Microsoft Office.
Google Docs online productivity suite
Google Docs is Google's suite of productivity software (like Microsoft Office). It includes Docs, Sheets, and Slides (like Microsoft's Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, respectively), and the resulting files are saves in your Google Drive cloud storage. Unlike Microsoft Office or Apple iWork, these "apps" are online-only, so there is no software to be installed, and they run inside your internet browser (Firefox or Chrome, recommended). Collaboration is a big feature of Google Docs. Like the online version or Apple's iWork apps on iCloud, multiple users can work on the same document together, at the same time. The downside to Google Docs is that the apps have extremely limited features - even more so than Apple iWork apps. For users inexperienced with productivity software, Google Docs is a good place to start learning since they won't be overwhelmed with too many features they may not have a need for.
TeamViewer remote support
TeamViewer allows for quick remote support if you can't make it into the office. With TeamViewer installed on your computer, Brian can take control of your computer to provide you with remote support. TeamViewer prevents unauthorized access to your computer by providing you with a Partner ID and 4-digit password that changes every time a new remote support request is made. No one can control your computer without knowing your Partner ID and randomized password.