The open-source movement has changed the world since it began as a software development philosophy in the late 1990s. With the best open-source software, you can easily perform common tasks on Windows, Mac, and Linux without having to pay for a license. If the software is licensed as open-source, anyone in the world can download, modify, and distribute the software without paying the inventor any royalties. It is estimated that 96% of all web servers on the planet are running on some open-source Linux operating system.
Open-source software is used in a variety of applications, from networks to web servers. Let’s focus on the 10 coolest open-source software tools of 2022 that you can download and install on your PC.
LibreOffice is a virtually free version of Microsoft 365, the world's most popular office productivity suite. Some may argue that LibreOffice is at its best for a vibrant developer community that is constantly introducing new devices and technologies. For example, LibreOffice has introduced a QR code generator that allows you to quickly create mobile-friendly connections.
- VLC media player:
VLC (Video LAN Client) is a lightweight media player developed by the VideoLAN project, an open-source development organization. This video and media player has dominated the market in terms of popularity for many years. VLC Media Player can play any audio and video file type without the use of additional codecs. It can also be used to watch podcasts and Internet radio stations. Perhaps the most useful feature of the VLC media player is playback control. From hardware optimization to importing subtitle files from third-party sources, you can customize everything to suit how your media is displayed.
Popular among Linux users since its first release in 1997, GIMP is one of the most well-known and well-maintained open source software applications in the world. This tool is as close as possible to the image editing features and versatility of the Adobe Photoshop platform. Layers, filters and automatic photo enhancements are all included in GIMP. You can also easily create new visual design components and download plugins developed by the GIMP open source community. Like Photoshop, GIMP's learning curve is steep, but anyone who spares no effort will appreciate the customisable interface and GPU hardware acceleration.
Shotcut is a free video editing program. This is an open-source project that shows how a dedicated community of developers can improve their platform in a short period of time. In previous versions, Shotcut's interface was a bit simpler. Subsequent upgrades included dockable panels, an intuitive timeline, and more, which has made Shotcut comparable to more expensive video editors such as Adobe Premiere Pro. This video editor enables non-destructive audio and video editing. This means you can create effects without sacrificing quality. It can also be used for simple clip splicing and cutting as well as colour grading and keying.
Brave is a web browser built on Google's open-source Chromium project that aims to keep your browsing private by automatically removing website trackers and eliminating annoying ads. It provides integrated Tor functionality for even safer surfing. The main advantage of Brave is that you can use various extensions of the Google Chrome Store while providing a faster browsing experience than traditional Chrome browsers. Brave uses less resources than Google's regular Chrome package, so it can speed up page loading.
Twenty years after it was first released, Audacity is still one of the most widely used open-source apps. This is a free audio editor compatible with Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. With this software installed, you have everything you need to record, edit and extend your sound files. In addition, you can use Audacity's third-party extension library to add features that aren't available by default for the large developer community of your program. You can do everything from adding sound effects to automatically adjusting the melody.
While there are other great password managers, KeePass Password Safe stands out for its ease of use and rich feature set. Protect your account information with industry-standard (and virtually unbreakable) AES encryption and two-factor authentication. Due to its agility, KeePass deserves to be on the list of the best open-source platforms. This tool can be installed on Windows, Mac, Linux, and mobile devices, but you can store your databases and software on a USB stick.
If you've used Microsoft Outlook, you know the benefits of being able to check multiple email inboxes from one location. Mozilla Thunderbird does just that, but with an open source twist. Thunderbird is an email client developed by Mozilla, who you may know from another well-known product, Firefox. It comes with many useful tools to help you manage your email better. For example, you can add emailed event updates to your built-in calendar or use an RSS reader to keep up with the latest news. Thunderbird also allows you to transfer a large file to your contacts by uploading it to another server and including a link in the message.
FileZilla is a free FTP client that allows you to manage your server file system remotely. Using a web client for FTP operations can be a hassle; if you run a website, you already know that FileZilla provides a more consistent and enjoyable FTP experience than most web providers' standard FTP software. Large file transfers, sync directory browsing, and filename filtering support are just a few of the extensive features of this free source FTP program. It also includes a network configuration wizard in case you have problems connecting your website to the server.
Obviously, this list is incomplete without mentioning Linux, the most well-known open-source operating system. Since its inception in 1991, Linux has evolved into a vast family of operating systems, including desktop variants such as Chrome OS and Ubuntu, and server stack solutions such as LAMP. Most developers didn't use it at the time because of the complexity of the installation and the amount of changes to the Linux computer needed to make it work. However, in recent years, the makers of the most popular Linux distributions have made great efforts to make them more user-friendly.
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