I come across friends & family who are forking out big bucks for everyday software like anti-virus, Office, spyware, photo editing, etc. They do so, not because they like to spend the money but because they have no idea that there are excellent, free, open source alternatives available. Today. Right now.
I have nothing against paying for excellent software or services that provide value. But, if there is a quality free alternative for your everyday needs why not save that money you would have spent for a better product/equipment that you wouldn’t have been able to afford before?
In fact, one of the most popular (all time number 3 .. if you looked at the footer) posts here has been about Free Software for your Computer. I should update that post soon with my new finds.
I recently wrote in a guest post at Techie-Buzz about a very cool project called WinLibre. WinLibre was a project where they put together some of the best in breed open source software available for free into one downloadable package.
A reader (thanks MechMike) quickly pointed out that WinLibre hasn’t been updated in a while and told me about the OpenDisk project. Here is an excerpt from their About page which summarizes this cool project!
OpenDisc is a high quality collection of open source software (OSS) for the Microsoft Windows operating system.
The two main goals of the project are:
- To provide a free alternative to costly software, with equal or often better quality equivalents to proprietary, shareware or freeware software for Microsoft Windows.
- To educate users of Linux as an operating system for home, business and educational use.
OpenDisc project gathers some of the best free & open source software out there into one easily downloadable CD image. They also list the programs in the cd image with description and link to the individual software home page if you’d like to get them A la carte.
- Blender – a 3D graphics modeling program
- Dia – a Visio like drawing program
- The Gimp – Adobe Photoshop alternative
- InkScape - Adobe Illustrator alternative
- Nvu – WYSIWIG Web page editor
- Srcibus – A professional desktop publishing program
- Tux Paint – Free drawing program for young children
- The Battle of Wesnoth – Turn-based strategy game
- Enigma – A puzzle game
- Neverball – A fun game where you tilt the floor to get the ball in a puzzle
- Sokoban YASC – Yet Another Sokoban Clone
- Azureus – A cool bit-torrent client
- Filezilla – FTP client
- Firefox – An excellent Internet Explorer alternative
- Httrack – Offline web browser utility
- Pidgin – Multi-protocol IM client
- RSSOWL – A Feed reader client
- Seamonkey – Web browser, IRC client, newsgroup client and HTML editor in one
- Thunderbird – A modern email client
- TightVNC – A remote control software
- WinSCP – Full featured SFTP client
- Audacity - Sound editing program
- Celestia – Simulation of entire universe
- Really Slick Screensavers – Collection of some cool screensavers
- Stellarium – Planetarium in your computer
- Sumatra PDF – Lightweight alternative for Adobe Reader
- VLC Player – Media player supporting numerous audio & video formats
- GnuCash – QuickBooks alternative
- MoinMoin Wiki Engine – A wiki building software
- NotePad2 – Windows Notepad alternative – with syntax highlighting and other features
- OpenOffice – Full featured alternative for Microsoft Office
- PDFCreator - Generate PDF documents from any Windows program with the Print button
- 7-zip – Packing & unpacking archives tool with support for a lot of formats
- Abakt – A backup tool
- ClamWin – Powerful anti-virus program (misses an on-access scanner – so it can’t replace a full time scanner yet)
- GTK+ – Toolkit for creating graphical user interfaces
- HealthMonitor – System monitoring tool
- TrueCrypt – Powerful encryption software to protect your private data
- WorkRave – Protect yourself from Repetitive Strain Injury
Whew.. isn’t that an excellent collection of free software? There are a few in here like InkScape & WorkRave I haven’t tried yet.
Download OpenDisc iso image | bit-torrent
OpenDisc uses a K-Meleon interface in the cd image so far and is experimenting with a Kiwix interface that’s supposed to be leaner and better for the next release.
Also, OpenDisc has a pretty active forum if you have questions about any of these or if you’d like to see something included to this list. I have downloaded OpenDisc and I am going to make copies and give it to friends who have an open mind about trying new things. I am sure some of them are going to chase me away but hey it’s worth a try, isn’t it?
If you feel like I am preaching to the choir, I would love to hear about a (more the merrier) open source software that’s not on this list but that you feel should be.