Freeware Best Bets

August 2009
by Reid Goldsborough

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Freeware Best Bets 

by Reid Goldsborough

The best things in life may be free: fresh air, a beautiful sunset, hugs. But with computers, is it true that there’s no such thing as a free lunch?

Not necessarily.

“Freeware” has been around since close to the beginning of the personal computer revolution, with PC-Talk, a communications program, originating free software distribution in 1982.

Freeware is similar to its cousins shareware and free software. With shareware, software authors make their programs free to try, but typically with limits in terms of features or a trial period until you buy the full program. With free software, you’re free to do almost anything you want with the program, including modifying it.

With freeware, you can’t legally modify the program, but all its features are accessible, and you can use the software for as long as you’d like. In some cases, freeware authors require that use be limited to individual, noncommercial purposes.

Some freeware authors do what they do for purely altruistic reasons, with no profit motive. Some use their programs to promote their consulting or other ventures. Most ask for volu…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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