I have become a lover of free software. GNU licensed software works on any system, well almost any. There are some software that will not work on Mac, yet.
- The Free Software Foundation provides regular updates in the ongoing battle for freedom from proprietary software. There is a directory available for free software to fit any desire or need.
- CNet offers a download site for software to use on Mac, Windows, and others. No matter what you are looking for you should find it here. Set up an account, and they will keep you updated on the software you have installed, including the licensed software.
- I had forgotten about this site: Tucows. The software offered from this site may be found on other sites, but there are a few unique to Tucows only. Software for mobile, Android, Windows, Mac and Linux.
- Finally there is ZDnet. They offer similar and unique software downloads. Free, Free to Try, and purchase.
No matter what software you think you need to purchase, remember to search for the free version first. Always check to make sure the software you are considering will save your files to the extension equivalent of the paid software. For instance, there are several free versions of word processing software. Each of them allows you to save your documents in the extensions of the paid versions.
Free software can have its issues. So read the reviews, check the information provided, even contact the creator to ask questions. Remember if you download the software and do not like it, you can always uninstall it. Each provider requests your reviews, but you may want to contact the vendor first and let him or her know what the problems were with the program. Sometimes it is as simple as not a user-friendly piece. I have found a few that were more complicated than the time available to learn more about them.
The biggest issue you are going to run into is installing free software on Windows 8. It is not going to happen unless you partition the drive. This is a skilled job to say the least. To date I have not invested in a Windows 8 hardware. If I do it will be solely for Microsoft and a notepad.
I use nothing but free software on my systems. There is nothing I cannot accomplish on paid software I cannot accomplish on free software. The techs for each piece are helpful, so are the forum members. The Help file is my first go to, if I cannot find the answer then Google Search is my next choice. The language is easy to follow in most help articles. And you can always ask for clarification or go back to Google search with your questions.
Have fun shopping for your free software at each of these sites. There are many more, but so far I have not needed to go anyway where else. The other issue to consider is this: Is the software safe? Always research the website offering free software. And when you install it, make sure you are paying attention, many pieces of software offer toolbars and other programs. Watch what you click, happy installations.