To what extent do you use free software?

The Firefox Logo - Firefox is a symbol of free software these days, the web browser that took a big chunk out of evil Internet Explorer's market share. It's open source, standards compliant, and good for newbies and power-users alike.
United States
March 30, 2008 9:47pm CST
In the forums where I hang out online, most people talk quite a bit about free, open-source software. Since MyLot is a lot less targeted, I was wondering whether there is a wider user group for this free software. Here are a few questions to think about when you respond:Do you use Firefox? Do you know what open source means? Do you have Linux, or know what it is? How about OpenOffice, The Gimp, etc..? Did you know that almost every piece of software you own could be replaced with a free alternative?I'm just curious to see what everybody thinks... I myself use OpenOffice (like MS office) and The Gimp (like Photoshop), but I have Windows XP and not Linux. I think this is pretty common among the tech-oriented folks out there, but I could be wrong.
2 people like this
4 responses
• United States
31 Mar 08
I use Linux so all the software I use is free, and most of it is opensource. Most of the software is licensed under GPL or GNU or some combination. You have to enable some of the closed source software by enabling extra repositories that are disabled by default. I use Openoffice 2.4 (the new one that came out this week) and Gimp, though I prefer Photoshop on Windows.
1 person likes this
• United States
31 Mar 08
I think the gimp vs. photoshop preference is largely based on what you're used to. I had Photoshop for a while, and got quite used to it, but that was about a decade and several machines ago. Now that I have the GIMP, I don't see any reason to switch because I already know the interface and all the little tricks.
• United States
31 Mar 08
I use as much freeware as I can. That way I don't have to worry about a license and my trial running out and all of that.
• United States
31 Mar 08
Yep, trial periods are awful...and I've declared war against them by not paying for Microsoft Office. I also don't download trial shareware anymore, though it was all the rage in the 1990s.
• United States
25 Apr 08
To a great extent. Having been in the IT repair industry for 20+ years, I have come to appreciate not only the value of free software but also the quality of free and OpenSource software. In nearly ALL of my computer activities I am using free or OpenSource software. I have even conceptualized and begun work on a book I call: "The Freeware Tech" in which I detail my favorite freeware or OpenSource utilities and the benefit of their employment. People really would be AMAZED to see the volumes of free software out there. In fact, people would be amazed to learn how much of the Internet is run on free software!
@p_vadla (1685)
• India
8 Apr 08
For official purposes we use authentically bought and fully licensed versions. Free software from the DVDs that come with Computer mags are used mostly for home purposes.