Finding freeware, or even better, open source applications can involve some serious Googling sometimes before you wade through the trial-ware programs listed as free in the search results. Luckily there are a number of websites that have nicely categorised free software so it becomes a piece of cake to find and download exactly what you need.
Here’s a list of sites that I use whenever I’m looking for something new to do all sorts of odd jobs:
- FileHippo : It doesn’t just have a funny hippo in the logo, no suree! It’s also a slick website with tons of good, solid free and open source applications listen in a ton of handy categories, making your search for the perfect piece of software like a walk in a really safe park without drug dealers and prostitutes or anything. Sweet! You can also get older versions there, which is very interesting if you have an old PC lying around that can’t run the latest and greatest version any more cause it’s too damn slow. You have to find out what’s open source and what not there yourself though.
- eConsultant dot com sounds like a money making blog, but it does have a huge list of open source apps listed per category. If you don’t find anything in there, there’s also a freeware list, equally huge again with the same handy categories.
- Sourceforge.net : Probably the biggest and most popular place where developers dump their open source projects for all to download and reap the benefits of. Be sure to set your search filters to include only stable projects if you are looking for stuff that works right out of the box. If you like to tinker with code, there’s plenty of stuff to be found in there to improve on, so feel free to geek out.
- the Free Software Directory: For geeks only really. Most of it is software for GNU *nix systems, so if you’re looking for something particular this might be a good place to look. Steer away from this one if you’re just looking for a setup.exe to run.
It got pretty geeky toward the end, but hey, if you’re reading this blog, there’s a big chance you’re one of those anyway, so go ahead an indulge yourself.
Free source code. Yummy.