After our earlier article showing you how you can still get Windows 10 for free, we got to thinking about freebies. Which led to this question: What are the best free software alternatives to paid applications? So we started to compile a list. One that we thought could be useful to you. We have tried to include most of the mainstream uses of a computer and give options across all platforms (Windows, Mac and Linux). But there will inevitably be something we missed. However, the massive list of free software alternatives below are sure to throw up something useful to you.
And if you liked the list, or found it useful, please be sure to share it with others who might find it beneficial. You can check out part two here.
A Massive List Of Free Software Alternatives
- Canva – Free templates for infographics, newsletters and a whole host more. The basic service is free and because it’s browser based, it works across all devices. (Web App).
- Gimp – The daddy of free photoshop alternatives. If you haven’t heard of Gimp, where have you been? (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- ImageBatch – A great piece of software that allows you to batch alter images on the fly. Watermark, rotate, rename to your hearts content. (Windows).
- ImageOptim – Works to compress your images and remove metadata, making them quicker to load and work on. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- InkScape – A free software alternative to Adobe Illustrator with professional grade vector graphics capability. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- Pixlr – Great lightweight alternative to Photoshop. (Web App).
- Photoscape – An easy to use photo editing software alternative to Photoshop. (Windows).
- Riot – Batch image compression tool for those who work with a lot of pictures at once. (Windows Standalone / Gimp Plugin).
- Seashore – An open source image editor similar to a paired down Gimp. (Mac).
- FastStone – Image editor, browser and converter. (Windows).
- FSpot – A fully featured photo management system. (Linux).
- IrfanView – A lightweight image viewer and editor that includes batch processing. (Windows).
- Polarr – A web based alternative to Adobe Lightroom. (Web App).
- RawTherapee – Get the most details and the least artifacts from your RAW data. (Windows, Mac).
- Shotwell – A capable picture management system for Gnome 3. (Linux).
Video Editing & Playback
- Avidemux – A free and simple video editor for basic needs. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- Blender – Amazing free video and animation editor. Steep learning curve! (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- Freemake Video Converter – An extremely capable piece of video conversion software with plenty of presets. (Windows).
- Handbrake – An open source video transcoder, a great alternative to Adobe Media Encoder. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- Lightworks – A monster package. Basic software is free and provides an extremely capable video editing suite. Used on films such as The Wolf Of Wall Street and Pulp Fiction. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- Miro – An open source video player. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- Miro Video Converter – Funnily enough, it’s a free video converter! (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- Openshot Video – A great free software alternative to Final Cut Pro and Premiere Pro for Linux users. (Linux).
- VLC – The one and only. Plays everything you can throw at it. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- Hitfilm Express – Not only is this editor great and free, you also get some a free after effects suite thrown in too! Brilliant starter alternative to Adobe After Effects. (Windows, Mac).
DVD / Blu-Ray Authoring
- Dvd Styler – Create, design and burn your own dvds. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- Ashampoo Burning Studio – Free DVD burning software with blu-ray support (Windows).
- Anyburn – Free burning of DVD, CD and Blu-Ray. (Windows).
- Burn – DVD Burning toolkit available for the Mac. (Mac).
- Atom – A useful text editor that’s completely customizable. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- Foxit PDF Reader – No more having to rely on Adobe for your PDF needs. (Windows, Linux).
- Google Docs – A web based alternative to Microsoft Office that you can sync across all your devices. (Web App).
- Libre Office – A fully fledged free software alternative to Microsoft Office. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- Outlook – Have an outlook account with Microsoft? Then you also have basic office documents. Click in the top left corner of your email to access them. (Web App).
- Sublime Text – Amazing text editor that lives up to it’s name. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- WPS Office Free – Another solution for those who don’t want to spend a fortune on Microsoft Office. (Windows).
Productivity and Note Taking
- EverNote – Everyone knows this one. Do I really need to explain it to you? (All Devices).
- Lastpass – Password manager and auto form filler. (All Devices).
- OneNote – Another note taking app from Microsoft. Syncs across all your devices. (All Devices).
- Pocket – Save articles, documents, notes etc to be viewed later. (All Devices).
- Trello – Project management made easy. (All Devices).
- Wunderlist – Keep a track of everything you do. (All Devices).
- 7Zip – No trial periods, nada. Just a great free piece of software for unzipping and more. (Windows).
- App Cleaner – A lightweight app removal program for the Mac. (Mac).
- Calibre – An ebook management system. Import, edit and convert your ebooks. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- Autoruns – Stop unwanted programs from slowing down your boot up times. (Windows).
- CCleaner – Program manager and clean upper for you computer. (Windows, Mac, Android).
- DropBox – Sync all your documents etc (All Devices).
- FileZilla – A totally free FTP solution. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- Flux – I love Flux. It automatically dims your screen according to how bright it is outside. Saving you from eye strain. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- Malware-Bytes – An amazing, free malware removal tool. (Windows).
- MP3 Tag – A great way to manage all your music files. Batch rename, edit, the works. (Windows, Mac).
- Recuva – Need to get back a deleted file? This is what you need! (Windows).
- SD Formatter – Primarily for formatting SD cards but can also be used on USB sticks. Great for resetting sizes and file tables. (Windows, Mac)
- Spybot – Used to clean out malware from your system. (Windows).
- Thunderbird – A great email application that works seamlessly with any email address. Also includes a calendar and an organiser. (Windows, Mac, Linux).
- UnArchiver – Zipping tool for the Mac OS. (Mac).
Any free software alternatives we have forgotten or should have included? Have your say in the comments. Also, part two is now up so be sure to check it out for even more freebies!