Open Source Software Links

Many commercial office packages have open source, or at least free, alternatives available. Many of these products are also available across platforms. Many conform to a published, open standard.

Office Software

Rather than Mi¢ro$oft Office, try OpenOffice with:

try as rather than
OOo Writer word processor M$ Word
OOo Draw drawings M$ Visio
M$ Publisher
OOo Calc spreadsheet M$ Excel
OOo Impress M$ PowerPoint
OOo Base database M$ Access

These are able to read and write Mi¢ro$oft documents, and write PDFs.

Many extensions are available.

OpenOffice does not contain a true replacement for Publisher or Visio.

Rather than Mi¢ro$oft Publisher, try Scribus.
Unfortunately, this can not read or write Publisher documents.

Rather than Mi¢ro$oft Outlook, try

Mozilla Thunderbird as email client
Mozilla Sunbird as calendar application

These are not as extensive as Outlook in functionality, but may be better for home use.

Drawing and Artwork

Rather than Mi¢ro$oft Visio, try Dia or Inkscape.

Rather the Adobe Photo$hop, try the GIMP.


Rather than Mi¢ro$oft Internet Explorer, try Mozilla Firefox as browser. (See also my post on extensions.)

Mathematics and CAS

The computer algebra system Mathematica from Wolfram Research is very expensive.

For alternatives, see my post on CAS software.


I’d recommend Cobian Backup.

Source Control

Rather than Mi¢ro$oft Visual $our¢e$afe, try Subversion. (See also my subversion posts on tools and links.)

There are many other free and open-source source control tools out there, including some very interesing ones. I like Subversion partly because it is relatively light-weight, configurable (yet with very sensible defaults), easy to install, and has active development and support communities.


To create PDF files from any application, try PDFCreator.

Real Player is horrible adware and Windoze Media Player is pretty horrible too; try instead Real Alternative, which includes Media Player Classic.


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