I collected a list of my favorite open source software. Open source software is software that makes the source code publicly available. A very popular license for open source software is GNU General Public License (GPL). See for more info the GNU GPL website. If you don't want to spend large amounts of money on buying software or if you want to have the liberty to adjust and change the software, then open source software might suit your needs.

GNU General Public License

Office software/ office suite

  • Open Office

    This open source office suite is supported by a large community worldwide. After Sun was bought by Oracle and Oracle stopped the development of Open Office, the Apache Foundation eventually took over. Check it out to see if it suits your office needs as well.

  • Libre Office

    This open source office suite is supported by a large community worldwide. On 28 September 2010, several members of the project formed a new group called "The Document Foundation". The Document Foundation created LibreOffice from their former project in response to Oracle Corporation's purchasing of Sun Microsystems over concerns that Oracle would either discontinue, or place restrictions on it as an open source project, as it had on Sun's OpenSolaris.[source Wikipedia]

Internet browsers

  • Firefox

    This open source browser is developed by the Mozilla foundation and is available in many different languages. If you are looking for an alternative for your current internet browser, check this one out.

  • Chromium

    This open source project contains the source code for Google's Chrome webbrowser.

Email software

  • Thunderbird

    Good and fast email program, available in many languages. There are many extensions and addons available for more functionality.

Software development: IDE

  • Netbeans

    Quickly and easily develop desktop, mobile and web applications with Java, PHP, C/C++ and more.

  • Eclipse

    Eclipse is a platform/IDE for software development with many different add-on modules available to suit your needs.

2D graphics / picture editing

  • GIMP

    Very good image manipulation software, also with many advanced functions.There are many plugins available. The user interface takes some time to get used to.

  • GIMPshop GIMPshop is a modification of the free/open source graphics program GNU Image Manipulation Program (GIMP), intended to replicate the feel of Adobe Photoshop. Its primary purpose is to make users of Photoshop feel comfortable using GIMP.
  • Inkscape

    Inkscape is a high quality Open Source vector graphics editor.

3D modelling and rendering

  • Blender

    Blender is a very high quality open source 3D software. It can be used for modelling, editing and rendering 3D models.

  • POV-Ray

    The Persistence of Vision Raytracer is a high-quality, totally free tool for creating stunning three-dimensional graphics. It is available in official versions for Windows, Mac OS/Mac OS X and i86 Linux. The source code is available for those wanting to do their own ports.

  • K3DSurf

    K3DSurf is a program to visualize and manipulate Mathematical models in three, four, five and six dimensions. K3DSurf supports Parametric equations and Isosurfaces.

Anti virus

  • ClamAV

    ClamAV is a open source anti virus scanner. A version for windows can be found at ClamWin

Bittorrent/P2P clients

  • Azureus

    Azureus is a java-based bittorrent client.

  • Ares Galaxy

    Ares is a free open source file sharing program that enables users to share any digital file including images, audio, video, software, documents, etc. P2P and bittorrent client

File compression / archiver

  • 7-Zip

    7-Zip is a file archiver with a high compression ratio. Handles many different formats such as ZIP ,RAR and 7z.

3D CAD(Computer Aided Design) software


    BRL-CAD is a open source CAD software package, originally developed by the US military. Includes solid modelling, rendering and geometric analysis.

  • Open Cascade

    Open CASCADE Technology is software development platform freely available in open source. It includes components for 3D surface and solid modeling, visualization, data exchange and rapid application development.

  • FreeCAD

    FreeCAD will be a general purpose 3D CAD modeller. The development will be completely Open Source. As modern 3D CAX modellers it will have a 2D component to extract design drawings from the 3D model, but 2D (like AutoCAD) is not the focus, neither are animation and organic shapes (Maya, 3D StudioMAX, Cinema 4D). FreeCAD will aim directly to mechanical engineering, product design and related features (like CatiaV4 and V5, and SolidWorks). It will be a feature based parametric modeler.

  • Avocado CAD

    avoCADo :: Open Source 3D CAD

FEM (Finite Element Method) software

  • Code Aster

    Code-Aster is a large numerical / FEM software project , developed in France. Unfortunately there is little documentation available in English, but it seems to be professional and wellfunded.

  • Impact

    Impact - a Free Explicit Dynamic Finite Element Program Impact is an open source finite element program suite which can be used to predict most dynamic events such as car crashes or metal sheet punch operations. They usually involve large deformations and high velocities.

  • Elmer

    Elmer is an open source multiphysical simulation software developed by CSC. Elmer development was started 1995 in collaboration with Finnish Universities, research institutes and industry.

  • gmsh

    Gmsh is an automatic 3D finite element grid generator with a build-in CAD engine and post-processor. Its design goal is to provide a simple meshing tool for academic problems with parametric input and advanced visualization capabilities.

  • Calculix

    CalculiX A Free Software Three-Dimensional Structural Finite Element Program

Numerical problem solving

  • Octave

    GNU Octave is a high-level language, primarily intended for numerical computations.

Open source Rapid Prototyping

  • RepRap

    RepRap is short for Replicating Rapid-prototyper. It is a self-copying 3D printer .

Commandline tools

  • cURL

    curl is a command line tool for transferring data with URL syntax, supporting DICT, FILE, FTP, FTPS, Gopher, HTTP, HTTPS, IMAP, IMAPS, LDAP, LDAPS, POP3, POP3S, RTMP, RTSP, SCP, SFTP, SMTP, SMTPS, Telnet and TFTP. curl supports SSL certificates, HTTP POST, HTTP PUT, FTP uploading, HTTP form based upload, proxies, cookies, user+password authentication (Basic, Digest, NTLM, Negotiate, kerberos...), file transfer resume, proxy tunneling and a busload of other useful tricks.