This page helps you find out free programs with which you can fully engage in the digital world: operating systems, office suites, Internet browsers, email clients, programs to compress data, software for playing video and audio files, multimedia codecs, software for working with photos and graphic files. Some of the programs listed below, other than they are free, are also open source programs, i.e. programs available to anyone interested to study them, modify and further distribute.
If you know a highly useful and free computer program, please feel free to contact us at this e-mail address: info@ITdesk.info in order to put the program on the list. Thank you in advance!
Most widely used free operating system is Linux. There are different versions, called Linux distribution, free to use and modify, tailored to different types of users. On Wikipedia page en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_Linux_distributions described are the most popular Linux distributions with their main purposes for which they are programmed, and links placed on the official site Linux distribution from which you can download the Linux distribution and learn how to install it on your computer.
Office Suite is software package intended for office data processing. Generally, office software packages contain programs for: word processing, spreadsheets, creating formulas, drawing, creating presentations and working with databases. And to home users these packages can be extremely useful, especially for an academic, that is school, needs of individuals.
The following software packages are top quality and stand-by-side to commercial office suite:
- here you can view a video presentation about installing and using this package of office programs: http://www.itdesk.info/en/installing-openoffice-org/
- Learn more about OpenOffice.org on this Wikipedia page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OpenOffice
- Openoffice.org can be downloaded on this page: http://www.openoffice.org/
LibreOffice – to find out more go to Wikipedia page : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LibreOffice and LibreOffice can be downloaded on this page: http://www.libreoffice.org/download/
OpenOffice for children (9-12 years) – you can download on this page: http://wiki.ooo4kids.org/index.php/Main_Page
Without the Internet browser it is impossible to “surf” the Internet, i.e. to visit web site. The following is a list of links to sites from which you can download the browser of your choice:
- Here you can view a video presentation about installing and using this browser: www.itdesk.info/en/installing-mozilla-firefox/
- Mozilla Firefox can be downloaded at the following link: www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/new/
- on this Wikipedia page you can find out more about this browser: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mozilla_Firefox.
Opera – on the web page http://www.opera.com/ you can find out more about the Opera Internet browser, and download it to your computer.
Google Chrome – on the web page http://www.google.com/chrome you can find out more about the Google Chrome Internet browser, and download it to your computer.
Safari – on the web page http://www.apple.com/safari/ you can find out more about the Safari Internet browser, and download it to your computer.
You can check your e-mail via the free on-line service such as Gmail or Yahoo!, as well as download it to your own computer. Often, when you charter a connection to the Internet through an Internet provider, with a connection you will receive e-mail address. To be able to use this e-mail address you need to have installed email client software.
One of the most popular free mail client is Mozilla Thunderbird.
- video presentation on how to install and use Mozilla Thunderbird is available here: www.itdesk.info/en/installing-mozilla-thunderbird/
Programs for data compression
When you want to send multiple files at once via email (attachment) or compress file so that it takes less space on the hard disk, then you need a program for compressing data.
If you want to learn more about using programs for data compression, view two presentations of module 2:
- http://www.itdesk.info/en/using-the-computer-and-managing-files-2/ (data compression is shown at 9 minute and 55 second of presentation)
- http://www.itdesk.info/en/using-the-computer-and-managing-files-3/ (how to decompress data is shown at 15th second of presentation)
If you want to learn more about data compression, you can do so using the handbook published on http://www.itdesk.info/handbook_using_computer_managing_files.pdf or on Wikipedia link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Data_compression.
7-zip is a freeware program to compress / decompress data
- video presentation on installing 7-zip is available here: www.itdesk.info/en/installing-7-zip/
- on the web page www.7-zip.org/ you can download 7-zip installation and to learn more about the program
Computers are extensively used for listening to music and watching movies. To be able to play audio and video files you need to have the program installed for viewing audio and video files, and have installed the appropriate codec.
Programs to play video and sound:
VLC - the website where you can download VLC media player and find out more about the program (recommended for video files): www.videolan.org/vlc/
Gombe - the website where you can download Gombe installation and learn more about the program (recommended for video files): www.gomlab.com/eng/GMP_download.html
Winamp - on the website where you can download Winamp player and learn more about the program (recommendations for audio files): www.winamp.com/
BSplayer - the website where you can download BSplayer installation and learn more about the program: http://www.bsplayer.com/
- video presentation on how to install K-Lite codec is available here: www.itdesk.info/en/install-klite-codec-pack/
- package can be downloaded at www.codecguide.com/download_kl.htm
Programs for working with photos and graphic files (2D / 3D)
Diagram Designer – video presentation that shows the installation and use of this program you can view at: www.itdesk.info/en/installing-diagram-designer/ and program can be downloaded at: logicnet.dk/DiagramDesigner/
Inkscape - the website where you can download Inkscape installation and find out more about the program: inkscape.org/
GIMP - the website where you can download the gimp installation and learn more about the program: www.gimp.org/
IrfanView - the website where you can download IrfanView installation and learn more about the program: www.irfanview.com/
Blender - the website where you can download Blender installation and learn more about the program: www.blender.org/
Antivirus protection is required when surfing the Internet and using removable media. More about protecting against viruses and other malicious programs can be found in the manual Basic Concepts of Information and
Communication Technology, in the chapter Protection when using ICT, published on link:
Video presentation that shows the finding, installing and using free antivirus program view at this link: www.itdesk.info/en/installing-anti-virus-software/
Proofreading: Maja Vidan