What’s the scoop on free software?–Why is it free? Where and how do you get it? Is it safe for my computer? The answer to these questions will make you more knowledgeable about free software, and hopefully, more comfortable using it.
First, let me state that I have no affiliation with any software company or download site…free or otherwise. These are my tips, opinions, and recommendations, for you to consider.
Why is it free? For several reasons: some software is published as both a free version and a paid version, a sales tool with the premise that you’ll like the free version so much you’ll want some additional functionality and will purchase the paid version to get it. Another reason is that some software companies take the approach of publishing a free product in hope that it will create a brand or quality reputation for them to sell other software in the future. And finally, there’s the Open Source software crowd who believe all software should be free to everyone.
Where and how do you get it? How you get it is to download it from a website. Where you get it is very important. Some free software download sites are better than others in that the good ones make sure that the software they download is of high quality and free from malware, others do not go to the trouble to vet the software for you. I wholeheartedly recommend CNET Downloads.com for your free software downloads. It’s a great site that’s been around a long time, and has a great reputation.
You can find software by operating system such as Windows software and Mac software, by category such as security software or business software or browsers, or check out the most popular free downloads to see what other folks are downloading. Another feature of this site is that it offers user reviews and ratings. This feature and the excellent descriptions and screen shots of the software have been valuable to me in choosing my free downloads.
Is it safe for my computer? Top all this off with the unparalleled software policies CNET employs such as: security, privacy and control, quality and content, access and usability, data integrity and customer service and business practices, and you’ll see, as I have, that it’s a good place to get your free software downloads. Their security and privacy control of their software means that they test all of it for malware such as viruses, bots, spyware, Trojan horses and malicious adware of all kinds before they’ll offer them for download. That’s comforting and will help make the software downloaded safe for your computer.
So go ahead to their site and choose one software download to try, then form your own opinion of them.
Please comment on this subject; we all learn from each other when our views and opinions are shared.
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Home computing is a blast…keep it safe, productive and enjoyable.