What kinds of programs? Some good free ones:
OpenOffice to work on presentations, documents, etc.
Firefox for web browsing.
Thunderbird for email if you don't like webmail.
Skype for internet phone and video calls; Windows Live Messenger for text chats.
CCleaner to clean up unnecessary files and registry entries; keeps your computer running fast.
Adobe Reader, Shockwave Player, and Flash Player.
7-Zip for opening/creating archives.
These are some of the basics when I set up a new system. Any of them will work on Win7 64-bit.