We all like to get something for free and to download free software and to be honest sometimes free software or open source software can be better than the software you pay a lot of money for (free antivirus vs. subscription antivirus springs to mind).
I often spend a little time searching these sites for useful programs to download and over the years I have found some gems. Probably one the best programs I ever found was when lazily searching these types of sites was a program called GIMP which is an image editor. The point is that there is some great free open source software out there and these sites listed below will help you download free software for all different uses
As well as allowing you to download free software some of the sites also contain Shareware (trial and limited software). Enjoy the list and I hope you find something useful as I have over the years.
1. Cnet Download – Visit Site
This is a very popular website that contains a variety of software including free software, shareware and trials of software. Software is available for a number of different platforms including Windows, Mac, iOS and android. When I am looking to download free software this is the first place I personally come as it has a great reputation. The thing that makes this site so popular is that the site is very secure and the software is heavily tested for malware and virus infections. They also have a very good review section with both editors reviews and user reviews which allow to gauge how good a piece of software is.
There are literally hundreds of thousands of pieces of free and open source software you can browse through here from the simple programs like alternative calculators to the more complex anti-virus and productivity suites.
2. FileHippo – Visit Site
File hippo is another site that has been running a long time and has a reputation as a trusted source for free software. The thing I personally like about FileHippo is that they don’t just give you access to the latest version of the software they also have links to the earlier versions. For example you download version 2.1 of a program and don’t like it or it is full of bugs, using FileHippo you can go back and find the version that worked best for you i.e. Version 1.8. As well as allowing you to download free software they also allow you to download trial versions of programs allowing you to try before you buy.
They also have a comment system which is useful for seeing other people’s views on the software and good descriptions and change logs.
3. Tucows – Visit Site
As with most sites Tucows allows you to download free software as well as shareware and subscription software. The site is well designed, easy to search and easy to use. As with the other big sites it has a reputation of being safe to download from. The only thing that lets it down for me compared to some of the other big download sites is the lack of community interaction. There are no comment sections or user reviews which I personally like to see before downloading software. Having said that it is still an excellent site.
4. SourceForge – Visit Site
SourceForge is probably one of the most popular open source software sites on the internet to download open source software. It is the world’s largest open source development site. With over 250k projects and over 2.5 million registered users the number of tools available on this site is truly incredible and worth checking out.
5. Softpedia – Visit Site
Although not as big as some of the other sites listed Softpedia is still worth a visit if you want to download free software. The site does have a user rating and comment system so you can see what other users think of software and the information and descriptions they provide of the software is generally very good.
6. Snapfiles – Visit Site
Snapfiles have a number of sections when you go to their site.
Freeware – This is software that is free to download
Shareware – Is generally software that can be used for a limited time or has some of the advanced features removed that can’t be used without paying for a licence.
7. Distrowatch – Visit Site
If you are looking for Linux distros then this is the place to be. This site is long running any highly respected. As well as download links they also have news and reviews on the latest distros.
8. Opensourcemac – Visit Site
This site is full of free open source software for your MAC with download links. All the software on this site is free to use as it is open source. They also provide links to free iPhone software and open source MAC games.
9. FreeSoftwareForStudents – Visit Site
Although only a relatively small site compared to some of the sites on this list Free Software For Students is definitely worth visiting as it provides links to some of the more popular free software that is ideal for students. For example links to free alternatives to Microsoft office.
10. Wikipedia – Visit Site
Finally we have Wikipedia’s free software portal. This portal provides links to download free software sorted by categories. While not very extensive compared to other free software sites it is still worth a look as there are some rough diamonds in there.
So there you have it our top 10 sites to download free software and open source software. Feel free to drop us a comment to share any sites you have used that you think deserve a mention or tell us your favorite bit of free software.