Saving Money on Software

Tips for saving money on computer software as suggested by the ThriftyFun community?

Pam's Software Suggestions

  1. Google has a whole suite of software FREE with getting a Google account, including Star Office, a good equivalent of Word.
  2. Ad

  3. Look for "freeware" or "shareware" on the net to see if your application can be found there for little or nothing
  4. Use trial applications if you won't be using the application often, or if it's a one-shot deal.
  5. Find free WAV/MP3 converters on the net.
  6. Use for editing short video clips.
  7. Look for lesser-known equivalents of more expensive software (sometimes European) on bargain software sites.

By pam munro

Try Open Source Software

Open Source, baby! Instead of Microsoft Office, try OpenOffice for a word processor and a spreadsheet app whose files are fully compatible with Microsoft applications.

For photo editing, I have Irfanview and think it's the tops. Clean interface, fully-featured, and easy to use.

Instead of expensive antivirus software, get AVG Free. For Spyware protection, Ad-Aware and SpyBot.


And even though Internet Explorer is essentially free, Firefox is a superior browsing experience and less prone to security vulnerabilities. (And it's free, too.)

I also second the nomination of Google Docs, which I use and like. It is Web-based, though, and so not the best choice if your Internet access is limited, metered, or just really slow.

It's really not necessary to spend a lot of money on software. With a few exceptions, there's almost always a free alternative that works just as well.

But be a good citizen. If you have a couple of bucks lying around, you can and should make a donation to the creator of any free software you regularly use.

By Kelly

PC Magazine

Log onto It not only has lots of free software you can download, but it also has ratings and comparisons on the various programs - both free and for sale. It tells you the best and the worst and is well worth checking out.


By Sheila Hendricks

Free Software for Students

Microsoft DreamSpark has free software available to students and teachers. Not sure of the exact link, but try this:

By Brandy

Don't Be a Pirate

There are a lot of places on the internet where you can download codes and software but you shouldn't do it. It is illegal and traceable through the internet, if they really wanted to find out. There have been stories of college kids being prosecuted for illegal music and movie downloads. Try not to "borrow" from your friends and family either, it is just as dubious. You wouldn't steal from a store, would you?


Try visiting your local library.

By B

Anti-Virus Software

When your Internet Provider has IE. McAfee already that checks incoming emails, I prefer using the FREE software download, such as Grisoft AVG, Lavasoft AdAware, Avast, etc. as my back up anti-virus. I have never been disappointed.


Buying backup anti-virus and anti-spyware can get expensive, especially if you have three computers. FREE AVG 8 also comes with ant-spyware included.

I think Norton AV you can only install it on one computer, for multiple computers you can pay extra for it, though it's expensive!

By Syd

Get Open Source At

Always use open source software! You can find everything you need at

By Orquidea Pires

Do you have any ideas to share? Feel free to post them below.

Saving Money on Software

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By cece (Guest Post)
June 14, 20080 found this helpful

I go to they have a large variety of software and its free.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
By Thrifty Gal (Guest Post)
June 17, 20080 found this helpful

Opera browser is free, and the most secure browser out there.

Where freeware is concerned, make SURE there's no adware or spyware attached to it. Before downloading, search Google to see if anybody's complaining about the program you want to download.


That said, I rarely, rarely pay for software. I have nearly 200 programs on my PC, and I'd say at least 175 of those cost me nothing.

When I get in the mood to shop (which isn't a thrifty practice!), I head online to play with new freeware. :-)

Reply Was this helpful? Yes

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