Free and Open source programs for everyday use

free and open source programs

What are open source programs and why are they important?

In recent years open source programs have gained more and more popularity because of the fact that they are free to the public and the public is free to help further develop open source programs. In other words open source means that the design of something has been made free to the public, it is the opposite of proprietary designs. And without your knowledge you are most likely using open source programs already. An example of this would be any Android smartphone from Google, Samsung etc. Google and Samsung smartphones use the operating system known as Android which is based on the open source operating system Linux. A Small fun fact about Linux, it is the most used open source operating system to date.

Popular Free and Open Source Alternatives to Proprietary Programs

LibreOffice

LibreOffice is a wonderful free and open source alternative to Microsoft Office Suite. 

The LibreOffice suite includes the following programs in its suite:

Writer – word processor

Calc – spreadsheet

Impress – presentations

Draw – diagrams

Base – database

Math – formula editor

Charts – create and embed charts


LibreOffice is constantly being updated and if you would like to help make LibreOffice better you can join their community by click this link – Get Involved

Krita

Krita is a free and open source painting program and a great alternative to Adobe Photoshop.

Krita has a large online community on Reddit (r/Krita) and on YouTube and of course the Krita website also has a manual to help you learn Krita.

Krita has the following features to help you sketch and paint to the best of your ability:
The following features can be viewed here.

Beautiful Brushes

Brush Stabilizers

Vector & Text

Brush Engines

Wrap-around mode

Resource manager

Drawing Assistants

Layer Management

Select & Transform

Full Color Management

OpenGL Enhanced

PSD Support

HDR Painting

Python Scripting

Training Resources

7-ZIP

7-Zip is a free and open source file archiver with a high compression ratio. If you are familiar with WinRAR then using 7-Zip will be a familiar experience. The difference between WinRAR and 7-Zip is that 7-Zip is completely free and does what WinRAR does but better.

Here are some of 7-ZIP’s well known features:

works with Windows 10 / 8 / 7 / Vista / XP. 

Strong AES-256 encryption in 7z and ZIP formats.

Supported formats: 

Packing / unpacking: 7z, XZ, BZIP2, GZIP, TAR, ZIP and WIM

Unpacking only: AR, ARJ, CAB, CHM, CPIO, CramFS, DMG, EXT, FAT, GPT, HFS, IHEX, ISO, LZH, LZMA, MBR, MSI, NSIS, NTFS, QCOW2, RAR, RPM, SquashFS, UDF, UEFI, VDI, VHD, VMDK, WIM, XAR and Z.

Click to download the latest version of 7-ZIP

OKular

Okular is a free and open source program developed by the KDE community. KDE is are the same people that developed Krita. Okular is a PDF, comic book and EPub reader.  Okualr has support for annotations, reading text aloud, thumbnails, bookmarks and much more.

Here are some of the features Okular is best known for:

Supported formats: PDF, EPub, DjVU, MD, JPED, PNG, GIF, Tiff, WebP, CBR, CBZ and much more.

Annotate PDFs

Select and view and text

Verify digital signatures embedded in PDFs

Free and Open Source

Rainmeter

Rainmeter is a free and open source desktop customization tool. Rainmeter has a thriving community that has built up beautiful skins for your desktop and you can also create your own skins and share them with the Rainmeter community. Rainmeter was also developed to be fast and lightweight. Rainmeter has a forum where you can interact with the rainmeter community and receive help from the rainmeter community. 

To download Rainmeter click here.To visit the Rainmeter forum click here.

WinDirStat

WinDirStat (Windows Directory Statistics) is a free and open source program that allows you to see where everything on your Windows computer is installed. If you’ve ever wondered what is taking up so much space on your harddrive then WinDirStat allows you to easily find old and temporary files and delete them with ease. WinDirStat also gives you a visual representation of the files on your harddrive and how much space those files take up.

To download WinDirStat click here.

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