100 Free Software for Windows
- Fernando Hal
There is no free lunch in this world. Fortunately, the same doesn’t apply to software. Finding free software is a boon. But finding free software that is not a crippleware (functionality is so limited to the point of almost useless), nagware (repeatedly reminds user to purchase the software), demoware (can be used for certain times or certain number of days only), and does not contain adware(display advertisements every now and then), spyware(collect your personal information) is tough.
Here is a list of what I consider as Top 100 Free Software for Windows. Most of these are software that I am using or have used before. Majority are freeware with some of them under open source software license agreement. There are a number of shareware in this list too. These are great shareware that provides good functionality even if you don’t buy.
CD / DVD Tools
CDBurnerXP Pro is a free CD/DVD burning solution. With this software you can burn CD-R, CD-RW DVD+R/RW DVD-R/RW discs.
This is not exactly a free software; once in a while it will display a reminder to purchase the software. But this software is too powerful to ignore. IsoBuster is a highly specialized yet easy to use CD and DVD data recovery tool. It supports all CD and DVD formats and all common CD and DVD file-systems. Start up IsoBuster, Insert a CD or DVD, select the drive (if not selected already) and let IsoBuster mount the media. You can also use IsoBuster to open content of iso files without having to burn it into CD.
ISO Recorder is a tool (power toy) for Windows XP, 2003 and now Windows Vista, that allows (depending on the Windows version) to burn CD and DVD images, copy disks, make images of the existing data CDs and DVDs and create ISO images from a content of a disk folder.
DVD Shrink enables you to copy a DVD very easily. Copying a DVD doesn’t get much simpler than this. Put DVD into DVD-ROM or DVD burner. Choose either either a Full Disk (1:1) copy or a main movie only. It’ll analyze DVD, encode video files , and finally burn a copy of the dvd to DVD±R media. Thus you have a excellent quality dvd copy of your original DVD.
CDex a CD-Ripper, thus extracting digital audio data from an Audio CD. The application supports many Audio encoders, like MPEG (MP2,MP3), VQF, AAC encoders.
Grand Theft Auto & Grand Theft Auto 2
When the original Grand Theft Auto first hit the PC in 1998, the game was already courting controversy: its brazenly amoral gameplay actually rewarded the player for wanton criminal conduct. But competing titles such as Carmageddon–a Death Race 2000-inspired car combat racer that awarded points for mowing down as many pedestrians as possible–were an easier lightning rod for critics.
Hidden & Dangerous
Although it’s unstable and flawed, Hidden & Dangerous is nonetheless an impressive and uniquely serious depiction of squad-level combat behind enemy lines.
The Ur-Quan Masters
The Ur-Quan Masters is a GPL port of the 3DO port of the DOS version of the classic video game Star Control II. It is based on the source code and game resources released by Toys For Bob in 2002. Explore the galaxy and engage in thrilling space battles with this game that combines strategy and action in a unique universe.
Starsiege Tribes was so revolutionary that it quite possibly limited its audience with its extreme depth and complexity. But the game’s features read like a laundry list of what players expect at a bare minimum from today’s shooters.
America’s Army: Special Forces
The original version of America’s Army, released in 2002, was a better-than-average online multiplayer shooter. But what set it apart from the legion of other Counter-Strike clones were its impressive visuals (powered by the Unreal graphics engine) and its price–or lack thereof. Unlike all the other games on this list that began as commercial ventures, America’s Army was always intended as a giveaway. That’s because it’s an unapologetic recruiting tool for the real U.S. Army, which funds its development.
100 Free Software for Windows
- Part 1 – Office / Productivities Software
- Part 2 – Graphics / Photo Editing Tools
- Part 3 – Security & Privacy Utilities
- Part 4 – Audio / Video Software
- Part 5 – File & System Utilities
- Part 6 – Internet & Network Tools
- Part 7 – Web Development
- Part 8 – CD / DVD Tools & Free Games
- Part 9 – Windows Development Tools & Education Software
What do you think? What other software deserve to be included? Which one should be out? Leave your comments below.