What are some free alternatives to Proprietary programs that are used everyday?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous' started by Buildershed, Jun 6, 2021.

  1. Just making this post to get the idea out there that there are alternatives to programs like Photoshop, MS Office, Premier Pro/Sony Vegas, etc.
    By free here, I mean as in no cost, not as in FOSS.

    Here are some that I know:

    Linux - Operating System
    LibreOffice - Office Suite (WINDOWS, MAC, LINUX)
    GIMP - Photo Manipulation (WINDOWS, MAC, LINUX)
    Krita - Photo Manipulation (WINDOWS, MAC, LINUX)
    Paint.NET - Photo Manipulation (WINDOWS)
    Kdenlive - Video Editing (WINDOWS, MAC, LINUX)
    Davinci Resolve - Video Editing (WINDOWS, MAC, LINUX)
    Hitfilm Express - Video Editing (WINDOWS, MAC)
    Shotcut - Video Editing (WINDOWS, MAC, LINUX)

    What are some yall have heard of?
  2. - Notepad++
    - Handbrake (fancier GUI of FFMPEG)
    - XNView (Free image viewing program for Windows, OSX, and Linux)
    - XNConvert (Free image conversion program for Windows, OSX, and Linux)
    - OcenAudio (More "professional" version of Audacity, though lacks features Audacity has. Windows, OSX, Linux)
    - LMMS (Linux Multimedia Studio, exists for Windows, OSX and Linux users.)
    - MilkyTracker (Popular music tracker software that works for Windows, OSX and Linux)
    - SunVox (Same as above, but allows you to do more than just create XM/MOD files. Supports all 3 OSs as well.)
    - Everything, by VoidTools (Index your entire system on Windows and have immediate results as you type in the program's searchbar)

    Everything really truly feels like what Windows 10 search "should have been", but Microsoft failed to create. Been using this since 2016 to search my 4TB+ data for a single files instead of using the file explorer to do so. I cannot recommend this program enough if you have a ton of data as well!!
    Elessar and 607 like this.
  3. Sorry for the double-post, but I love this thread. There are others out there who are probably dying to get away from some horrible monopolistic company's programs **cough cough Adobe cough cough** and they just do not know. Thank you for giving these people a chance! :D
  4. Google Docs, Google Sheets, Google Slides, Google Drawing. All available via the browser and free.
    607 and liamwill like this.
  5. Me with Adobe Acrobat at the moment. :(
  6. Get SumatraPDF. It's free, and open-source. It may not have all the "bleeps and bloops" that Adobe's Acrobat viewer may have, but for general purpose viewing, it's really good. :)

    (It even supports PDFs with a table of contents.)
  7. Looking to replace the full version sadly. I manipulate PDF documents all the time and having anything come close in my research to what Adobe Acrobat does has been difficult.

    It's one of those pieces of software where I've just about reached the conclusion its better to do the annual subscription cause nothing else seems to be able to compete.
    607 likes this.
  8. Hmm, try Microsoft Edge. I had to submit a paper to my HR department recently and I had to edit the PDF. Sumatra, sadly, does not have that functionality, but since I use Edge at home, I had 0 issues. :)
  9. I use Audacity a lot, but I'm not sure if there is a paid alternative? I feel like professionals use Audacity too. :p
  10. MuseScore - Music notation
    LaTeX - Document writing (Better than Word)
    R - statistical computing
    CCleaner - Computer cleaning. (Technically also a paid program, but the free version is great.)
    Calibre - E-book management. (I have no idea if there is anything better, but I've been using it for years...)
    I will also again recommend Everything for Windowns indexing and search. It's really good :p
    607 and UltiPig like this.
  11. Ah yes! Great recommendation. It's a very good free program. If you've used Finale Notepad or NoteFlight and were disappointed, try MuseScore 3.
    Actually, someone recommended MuseScore (1) to me on EMC 8 years ago, that's how I got into it. :D
  12. It's not really an everyday program for most of us, but Blender (3d modelling/animation/texturing software) is pretty darn awesome!
    Godot (open source game engine) is pretty cool too.
    607 and Joy_the_Miner like this.
  13. Ooooh, I forgot about Blender! It's very good for lots of things! :eek:

    Thanks for posting it Elessar!
    607 and Elessar like this.
  14. You can't just put LaTeX, say that it's better than Word and leave it at that! ;). While I agree with you 100%, there's a steep learning curve and if you write documents with just text its really equivalent in the end (though it looks better, imo)
    607 and Egeau like this.
  15. The big difference is that Office Word is WYSIWYG: what you see if what you get—while working on a document, you see it as it will appear when exported. With TeX and LaTeX and other extensions, instead, you just see code while working on your document, and have to export or render it to see what it will look like.
    That said, I personally find LaTeX easier to work with than Word. I can just type what I want without having to worry about things suddenly changing place, and I don't have to worry about the formatting, as the default LaTeX formatting is fine. When you need to draw trees or graphs etc it is hard in LaTeX, but I bet that is hard in Word too. :p
    Grasshppper likes this.
  16. My thesis begs to differ. I use \includegraphics and \begin{center} it goes into the right place, i use \begin{figure} and it moves to the top of the page. Tell me about it! :p
    mba2012 and 607 like this.
  17. I'd like to give a mention to a program that I use when backing up data:

    FreeFileSync, (Win, OSX, Linux) is a program that aims to make backing up your data very easy. What's more? It's open-source!

    I've been using this program for many years and it truly makes synchronizing two directories a snap with it's customizable features and the ability to create incremental or versioning copies of files that it's comparing! I use it on Windows and Linux, it saves me the trouble of having to manually figure out which files I have and have not backed up. I let the program's analysis do the hard work for me and I just sit back and watch it go! :D
    farmerguyson and 607 like this.
  18. By the way, I already used Everything twice. :D (I had never heard of it before you introduced it)
    Edit: Now 3 times. :cool: Thanks!
  19. I'd like to add one more program to my ever-growing list of programs I use that I'd like to share with you all:

    TreeSize (Windows only) --- This program helps me a lot managing my data. It scans your storage devices and prepares a visual interpretation of what your data looks like in every directory, every file, folder, (etc) is accounted for. Very useful since Windows (unlike other operating systems) doesn't have a size attribute visible in the file manager, plus, it helps me figure out which directory is the biggest and which files/folders in that exact same directory make up most of the bulk. Truly this helps me a lot, especially since I must keep my data from consuming too much space on my personal server. (To preserve the NVME lifespan, of course.)

    There are other programs out there, but I have always felt that this one was the best for my needs. Mainly due to the sheer speed it has when scanning my storage devices, and the level of customization the application has. One of those honorable mentions is WinDirStat. While okay, TreeView does the job better. :)
  20. This is amazing. Not only can I actually find stuff (without caring about windows search being active) but it makes it insanely easy to find a file that got saved somewhere else. Just now I downloaded a file through windows terminal (linux command line in this case) that got put somewhere unexpected.

    Instead of spending several minutes researching the default download location of the command line program I used, I just searched the file name under Everything and found it instantly. It took longer to figure out how to open the link in my folder than it did to find it. It's officially my go-to searcher :)
    607 and Joy_the_Miner like this.