Free Opensource Software Commercial Alternatives In 2024

1. LibreOffice An Alternative to Microsoft Office

LibreOffice is a powerful office suite – its clean interface and feature-rich tools help you unleash your creativity and enhance your productivity. LibreOffice includes several applications that make it the most powerful Free and Open Source office suite on the market:

2. Inkscape Alternative to Adobe Illustrator

Inkscape is open-source vector software, intended to serve as a replacement for Adobe Illustrator, CorelDraw, or Xara X. The program uses the Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) format for files. It serves as a formidable replacement for more complex and expensive program suites and supports some of the more advanced features of SVG graphics editors. The program can make a great replacement for proprietary software, especially for beginning freelancers and small businesses.

3. Scribus Alternative to Adobe Indesign

Scribus is an Open Source application that functions very much like Adobe Indesign. Both are used for Desktop Publishing (layout design for brochures, e-books, newspapers, and pdfs). Since Scribus is Open Source, it’s free and free for others to contribute to the application.  You can use one of the included templates for your project, or just start from scratch and use the included tools to design a finished project that’s perfectly in line with your vision. Scribus is a good alternative to more expensive and elaborate desktop publishing programs.

4. Gimp Imaging Editing Software – Alternative to Photoshop

GIMP is a free image retouching and editing tool, very much like Adobe Photoshop. Tools include free-form drawing, resizing, cropping, and photo montages. It is an extremely capable piece of software with many capabilities. It can be used as a simple paint program, an expert quality photo retouching program, an online batch processing system, a mass production image render, an image format converter, etc

5. e-book Creation and Management Software

Calibre is a free and open-source e-book library management application developed by users of e-books for users of e-books. Calibre converts files to PDF, ePub, and other file types that work well on e-readers.

6. GnuCash Free Accounting Software

Gnucash is a great alternative to commercial accounting software packages, for small businesses and freelancers of all kinds…And Best of all it’s FREE! GnuCash business features are impressive for a free product!  It is designed especially for the small- to midsized-business owner who needs an accounting system that’s not only easy to use but also easy on the budget!

7. Multi-track Audio Editor and Recorder.

Audacity is a free, easy-to-use, multi-track audio editor and recorder for Windows, Mac OS X, GNU/Linux, and other operating systems. The interface is translated into many languages. You can use Audacity to:,•Record live audio., •Record computer playback on any Windows Vista or later machine., •Convert tapes and records into digital recordings or CDs., •Edit WAV, AIFF, FLAC, MP2, MP3, or Ogg Vorbis sound files., •Cut, copy, splice, or mix sounds together. •Change the speed or pitch of a recording. •And more!

8. FileZilla FTP Program

FileZilla is an FTP program that comes in handy when you need to manage the files on your hosting server. FileZilla offers a two-window display. One side is the files on your computer and the other side is your files stored on the hosting company server. Filezilla allows you to quickly and easily upload and download files from your computer to the server and vice versa.


Audacity is a free and open-source digital audio editor and recording application software, available for Windows, macOS, Linux, and other Unix-like operating systems.   Audacity won the SourceForge 2007 and 2009 Community Choice Awards for Best Project for Multimedia. Audacity is licensed under GPLv2 or any later version.

The interface is translated into many languages. You can use Audacity to:,•Record live audio., •Record computer playback on any Windows Vista or later machine., •Convert tapes and records into digital recordings or CDs., •Edit WAV, AIFF, FLAC, MP2, MP3, or Ogg Vorbis sound files., •Cut, copy, splice, or mix sounds together. •Change the speed or pitch of a recording.

In addition to recording audio from multiple sources, Audacity can be used for post-processing all types of audio by adding effects such as normalization, trimming, and fading in and out. Audacity has also been used to record and mix entire albums, such as by Tune-Yards. It is also currently used in the UK OCR National Level 2 ICT course for the sound creation unit.

Audacity’s features include:

  • Recording and playing back sounds
    • Scrubbing (Version 2.1.1 and later)
    • Timer Record enables the user to schedule when a recording begins and ends to make an unattended recording.
    • MIDI playback is available (from version 2.2.0 onwards)
    • Punch and Roll recording – for editing on the fly (from version 2.3.0 onwards)
  • Editing
    • via cut, copy, and paste, with unlimited levels of undo
    • Features of modern multitrack audio software including navigation controls, zoom, and single track edit, project pane and XY project navigation, non-destructive and destructive effect processing, audio file manipulation (cut, copy, paste)
    • Amplitude envelope editing
    • Precise adjustments to the audio speed (tempo) while maintaining pitch in order to synchronize it with video or run for a predetermined length of time
    • Conversion of cassette tapes or records into digital tracks by splitting the audio source into multiple tracks based on silences in the source material
  • Cross-platform operation — Audacity works on Windows, macOS, and other Unix-like systems (including Linux and BSD)
    • Audacity uses the wxWidgets software library to provide a similar graphical user interface on several different operating systems.
  • A large array of digital effects and plug-ins. Additional effects can be written with Nyquist, a Lisp dialect.
    • Built-in LADSPA, VST(32-bit), and Nyquist plug-in support.
    • Noise Reduction based on sampling the noise to be minimized.
    • Vocal Reduction and Isolation for the creation of karaoke tracks and isolated vocal tracks.
    • Adjusting audio pitch while maintaining speed and adjusting audio speed while maintaining pitch
    • LADSPA, VST (32-bit) and Audio Unit (macOS) effects now support real-time preview (from version 2.1.0 onwards). Note: Real-time preview does not yet support latency compensation.
    • Saving and loading of user preset for effect settings across sessions (from 2.1.0 onwards).
  • Multitrack mixing
  • Support for multi-channel modes with sampling rates up to 96 kHz with 32 bits per sample.
  • Audio spectrum analysis using the Fourier transform algorithm
  • Importing and exporting of WAV, AIFF, MP3 (via the LAME encoder, now integrated as part of Audacity), Ogg Vorbis, and all file formats supported by libsndfile library. Versions 1.3.2 and later supported Free Lossless Audio Codec (FLAC). Version 1.3.6 and later also supported additional formats such as WMA, AAC, AMR, and AC3 via the optional FFmpeg library.
  • Detection of dropout errors while recording with an overburdened CPU
  • From 2.3.2 onwards, the mod-script-pipe for driving Audacity from Python now comes with Audacity and it can be enabled via preferences.
  • A full downloadable manual. (or available online without downloading).
  • Four user-selectable themes enable the user to choose their preferred look and feel for the application (version 2.2.0 and later)
    • Four user-selectable colorways for waveform display in audio tracks (version 2.2.1 and later).

Audacity supports the LV2 open standard for plugins and can therefore load software like Calf Studio Gear.

Audacity’s 3.0 update, in March 2021, introduced a new project file format, .aup3, using SQLite database to store everything.


Audacity supports only 32-bit or 64-bit VST audio effect plug-ins, depending on which architecture it was built for, but not both at the same time. It is built-in 32-bit for Windows and 64-bit for macOS.

It does not support instrument VST (VSTi) plugins.

Audacity lacks dynamic equalizer controls and real time effects while recording.

Audacity does not natively import or export WMA, AAC, AC3, or most other proprietary or restricted file formats; rather, an optional FFmpeg library is required.

AVG AntiVirus

Microsoft’s built-in Windows Defender protects Windows consumers from most malware, spyware, and viruses. There are a few free good virus protection programs available online. The free one I like to use is AVG. AVG AntiVirus FREE is super lightweight software that won’t affect your PC’s performance or speed.

AVG AntiVirus free version of the software is a single anti-malware package that lets you protect an UNLIMITED number of Windows and Mac computers, as well as Android phones/tablets, from one easy-to-use dashboard. It’s also Zen-enabled, which means you can now extend your protection to your entire family and all their devices.

AVG features most of the common functions available in modern antivirus and Internet security programs, including periodic scans, scans of sent and received emails (including adding footers to the emails indicating this), the ability to repair some virus-infected files, and a quarantine area (virus vault) in which infected files are held.


Calibre is a free and open-source e-book library management application developed by users of e-books for users of e-books. Calibre converts files to PDF, ePub, and other file types that work well on e-readers. Calibre can be used to create epubs for kindle and so much more. Calibre (stylised calibre) is a cross-platform open-source suite of e-book software.  Calibre is a powerful and easy-to-use e-book manager. It’ll allow you to do nearly everything and it takes things a step beyond normal e-book software. It’s also completely free and open source and great for both casual users and computer experts.

  • Save time on managing your e-book collection
  • Use it everywhere and with anything
  • Comprehensive e-book viewer
  • Download news/magazines from the web
  • Share and backup your library easily
  • Edit the books in your collection
  • Satisfy every e-book need and get support

Calibre supports organizing existing e-books into virtual libraries, displaying, editing, creating and converting e-books, as well as syncing e-books with a variety of e-readers. Editing books is supported for EPUB and AZW3 formats. …

Scribus a Free Alternative to Indesign

Scribus is a free Open Source application that functions very much like Adobe Indesign. Both are used for Desktop Publishing (page layout design for newspapers, brochures, newsletters, posters, books, and pdf). Scribus can also create animated and interactive PDF presentations and forms.

Scribus is a page layout program that can be installed on Windows, Mac, and Linux operating systems.  When saving and editing a file in Indesign, you won’t lose data by the inherent “trimming” function. What this means is that if you resize an image to 1/10th of its size the application gets rid of some data because you’re not using it. This function processed multiple times is what allows some documents (pdfs) to take up less space.

Scribus doesn’t have this function, so your files may be large depending on the image qualities used. The workaround for this is to edit your images in GIMP or Photoshop before using them in Scribus.

Although Scribus and Indesign are similar- Indesign’s file format (.indd) is proprietary and can NOT be read/opened/imported by Scribus. It’s currently unclear if Indesign has taken steps to be able to open Scribus files (.sla)

There are conversion processes that can be found by googling, but you may lose your layer functions and in some cases the whole of the file because it converts ‘every page’ of the file into a separate file*. As of today (10/30/13) Scribus is on version 1.4.3, with 1.5 in beta promising IDML files (the other export option Indesign offers besides pdf).



Create banners for websites and blogs with Inkscape and so much more. Inkscape is a free vector graphics editor similar to  Adobe Illustrator a widely used vector graphics editing program. Inkscape is powerful enough to compete with Adobe Illustrator in terms of the functionality most users expect from a vector graphics program.

The best thing about Inkscape is its ease of use. If you do a lot of work rendering and drawing in vector, this program will save you much time, even if you are new to digital art programs the learning curve with Inkscape is much easier than that of any Adobe Creative Suite program.

The Inkscape window has a large central drawing area, with several toolbars around the edges. Many dialog boxes, such as the one for setting stroke and fill properties, will open along the right edge of the window. The layout is configurable. For example, toolbars can be hidden, and dialog boxes can be dragged out of the main window to become independent windows.

The default file type of Inkscape is a .svg  but, Inkscape can import many file types including:

  • .ai
  • .pdf
  • .dxf
  • .png
  • .jpg
  • .bmp

Inkscape can export several file types including:

  • .pdf
  • .dxf
  • .png
  • .jpg
  • .bmp

Gimp A Free Alternative to Adobe’s Photoshop

GIMP is a free image retouching and editing tool, very much like Adobe Photoshop. Tools include free‐form drawing, resizing, cropping, photo montages, converting between different image formats
(i.e. from .tiff to .jpg), and more specialized tasks. There are versions for Windows, OS X, and Linux.

It is an extremely capable piece of software with many capabilities. It can be used as a simple paint program, an expert quality photo retouching program, an online batch processing system, a mass production image renderer, an image format converter, and more.

Gimp is expandable and extensible. It is designed to be augmented with plug-ins and extensions to do just about anything. The advanced scripting interface allows everything to be easily scripted, from the simplest task to the most complex image manipulation procedures.

Features And Capabilities
This is only a brief list of Gimp features:

· Full suite of painting tools including brushes, a pencil, an airbrush, cloning, etc.

· Tile-based memory management so image size is limited only by available disk space

· Sub-pixel sampling for all paint tools for high-quality anti-aliasing

· Full Alpha channel support

· Layers and channels

· A procedural database for calling internal Gimp functions from external programs, such as Script-Fu

· Advanced scripting capabilities

· Multiple undo/redo (limited only by disk space)

· Transformation tools including rotate, scale, shear and flip

· File formats supported include GIF, JPEG, PNG, XPM, TIFF, TGA, MPEG, PS, PDF, PCX, BMP and many others

· Load, display, convert and save to many file formats

· Selection tools including rectangle, ellipse, free, fuzzy, bezier and intelligent

· Plug-ins that allow for the easy addition of new file formats and new effect filters

To learn more visit the website

About Free Open-Source Applications

Free speaks everyone’s language! And Free open-source software applications freely available on the Internet can save you thousands of dollars. Free open-source software applications consist of a host of different types of applications offered throughout the Internet.

You can find just about any type of free alternative application to commercial brands you need to operate your business more efficiently. Everything from website building applications to desktop applications to a host of other applications you can use for small business productivity.

The whole idea of free open-source software is to produce comparable software without the expense. The benefits of using Free Open Source Software can include decreasing software costs, increasing security and stability (especially in regard to malware), protecting privacy, and giving users more control over their own hardware. Utilizing free internet software and applications can enable anyone and everyone, the same opportunity to start a high-profit potential business on the Internet, starting on only a shoestring budget!


Open Source software has gained a reputation for reliability, efficiency, functionality that has surprised many people in the software engineering world.  Open source means choice and freedom not to mention how much money you can save over commercial brands. Proprietary software is software that is owned by an individual or a company (usually the one that developed it) like Microsoft. There are almost always major restrictions on its use, it can be expensive and is under restrictive copyright and the source code is usually hidden from the users.

The difference between free software created by the open-source communities and commercial software sold by vendors is support.

Open-source software projects have different support options. Open-source support is available through the developer’s forums and is one of the biggest arguments or complaints people have against open source programs, the lack of support due to some questions going unanswered or the long wait for answers!


A free software license is a notice that grants the recipient of a piece of software extensive rights to modify and redistribute that software. These actions are usually prohibited by copyright law, but the rights-holder (usually the author) of a piece of software can remove these restrictions by accompanying the software with a software license that grants the recipient these rights.

Software using such a license is free software as conferred by the copyright holder. Free software licenses are applied to software in source code as also binary object code form, as the copyright law recognizes both forms.

Some free software licenses include “copyleft” provisions which require all future versions to also be distributed with these freedoms. Other, “permissive”, free software licenses are usually just a few lines containing the grant of rights and a disclaimer of warranty, thus also allowing distributors to add restrictions for further recipients.

While historically the most widely used FOSS license has been the GNU General Public GNU v2, in 2015 according to Black Duck Software. The benefits of using FOSS can include decreasing software costs, increasing security and stability (especially in regard to malware), and protecting privacy. Free software licenses and open-source licenses are used by many software packages.

Free, open-source operating systems such as Linux and descendants of BSD are widely utilized today, powering millions of servers, desktops, smartphones (e.g. Android), and other devices. For the most part, open-source software in most cases is freely available software that anyone can use. Free and open-source software (FOSS) is computer software that can be classified as both free software and open-source software.

Anyone is freely licensed to use, copy, study, and change the software in any way, and the source code is openly shared so that people are encouraged to voluntarily improve the design of the software.

Build A Website For Free With Free APPS

In today’s digital age, every business should have a website. A Website is built to educate, it is a unique way to connect with a worldwide audience. Whether you choose to create a website to inform people of your present or new business, sell products, or services over the Internet, your website is not only just another platform to increase potential customer outreach, but it also serves as your company’s virtual sales representative.

Content Management Systems

Content management (CM) is a set of processes and technologies that supports the collection, managing, and publishing of information in any form or medium. When stored and accessed via computers, this information may be more specifically referred to as digital content, or simply as content.


WordPress is by far the most popular content management system but each one of the following free open-source Content Management applications has been around for a long time and is still widely used today. They are used to build robust dynamic websites. By adding some additional functionality they can be used for just about any type of website you can think of.

WordPress is by far the most popular content management system. Not only is it easy but WordPress is by far the most popular content management system. By adding plugins you can create just about any type of website you can think of. WordPress is the answer you’re looking for when you want to build an attractive, sophisticated blog or website, online store, social network, or specialty site —without having to learn any special coding.

WordPress is pretty popular and a good option for people who want to attempt to build their own website. If and you want to step beyond WordPress there are some other really nice robust content management applications such as:


Create Professional Websites with Joomla! Joomla is a free open-source CMS system, used to build websites from templates. Varying from fairly basic to more complex sites. Some of the types of sites would include…

  • Corporate intranets and extranets
  • Online magazines, newspapers, and publications
  • E-commerce and online reservations
  • Government applications
  • Small business web sites

Joomla is one of the most popular website software, thanks to its global community of developers and volunteers, who make sure the platform is user-friendly, extendable, multilingual, accessible, responsive, search engine optimized and so much more. It provides capabilities for multiple users with different permission levels to manage (all or a section of) content, data, or information of a website project, or intranet application.


Drupal is a web development platform that stores your page content in a database and displays that content on web pages.  Drupal is referred to as a Content Management System (CMS) similar to WordPress or Joomla.

Drupal is a publishing platform created for building dynamic websites offering a broad range of features and services. Drupal can support a diverse range of web projects ranging from personal weblogs to large community-driven and corporate sites. Use as-is or snap in any of thousands of free designs and plug-ins for rapid site assembly. Developers love the well-documented APIs. Designers love our flexibility. Site administrators love limitless scalability.

Stand-Alone Applications

With WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal you can extend their functionality to build all types of websites. Free open source stand-alone applications are specifically designed for one specific purpose such as:

Forum Software Applications

Online forums are very popular! An Internet or online forum, or message board, is an online discussion site where people can hold conversations in the form of posted messages. They differ from chat rooms in that messages are often longer than one line of text, and are at least temporarily archived. An online community forum can be set up by an organization or a brand, where members, customers, and fans alike can congregate, ask questions, receive peer-to-peer support, discuss interests surrounding the brand and make social connections.

eLearning Software Applications

eLearning offers courses that are specifically delivered via the internet to somewhere other than the classroom where the professor is teaching also referred to as distance learning. eLearning utilizes electronic technologies to access educational curricula outside of a traditional classroom.  In most cases, it refers to a course, program, or degree delivered completely online. Set up your own online school with free e-learning software:

Social Networking Software Applications

Social networking sites are online communities where people can interact with friends, family, coworkers, acquaintances, and others with similar interests. Most social networking sites are Web-based and provide many ways for their users to interact, such as chat, messaging, email, video, voice chat, file-sharing, blogging, and discussion groups.

How To Publish A Website

It takes only 3 simple steps to set up a website online!

1. Choose a Domain Name:

A Domain is a user-friendly string of characters that can be used to access a site on the internet. The domain name is the web address of your online business, for example,, it is the way visitors enter your website, is a domain name. A domain name registration is a requirement of every website owner.

2. Purchase a Hosting Plan

A Web hosting service is a service that runs Internet servers, allowing organizations and individuals to serve content to the Internet. A hosting company provides the space you need on the Internet to publish your website or install your Website Building Application such as WordPress. When you purchase a hosting plan you are in complete control over your business on the Internet. How to choose a hosting company.

3. Publish Your Website

Once your website has been created and published it will be live on the Internet and reachable through your domain name. Anyone will be able to reach your new site by entering your domain name into a web browser.

Build Your Website for Free

Building your own website can give you complete freedom and control over your web business on the Internet. Using free Web Building Applications can save your thousands of dollars!