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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Freeware (from "free" and "software") is computer software that is available for use at no cost or for an optional fee.[1] Software that is not freeware is occasionally referred to as payware.



The term freeware was coined by Andrew Fluegelman when he wanted to sell a communications program named PC-Talk that he had created but for which he did not wish to use traditional methods of distribution because of their cost.[2] Fluegelman actually distributed PC-Talk via a process now referred to as shareware. Current use of the term freeware does not necessarily match the original concept by Andrew Fluegelman.


Software classified as freeware is normally fully functional for an unlimited time with no cost, monetary or otherwise. Freeware can be proprietary software available at zero price.[3] The author usually restricts one or more rights to copy, distribute, and make derivative works of the software.[4] The software license may impose restrictions on the type of use including personal use, individual use, non-profit use, non-commercial use, academic use, commercial use or any combination of these. For instance, the license may be "free for personal, non-commercial use".

Accordingly, freeware may or may not be free and open source software and, in order to distinguish, the Free Software Foundation asks users to avoid calling "freeware" free software.[5] The principal difference being that free software can be used, studied, and modified without restriction; free software embodies the concept of freedom to use, while freeware that of free-of-charge. Freeware is also different from shareware; the latter obliges the user to pay after some trial period or to gain additional functionality.[6]

See also


  1. ^ "freeware]" (2010). Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary. Accessed January 13, 2010.
  2. ^
  3. ^ Dixon, Rod (2004). Open Source Software Law. Artech House. p. 4. ISBN 9781580537193.,M1. Retrieved 2009-03-16. "On the other hand, freeware does not require any payment from the licensee or end-user, but it is not precisely free software, despite the fact that to an end-user the software is acquired in what appears to be an identical manner."  
  4. ^ Graham, Lawrence D (1999). Legal battles that shaped the computer industry. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 175. ISBN 9781567201789. Retrieved 2009-03-16. "Freeware, however, is generally only free in terms of price; the author typically retains all other rights, including the rights to copy, distribute, and make derivative works from the software."  
  5. ^
  6. ^ The Linux Information Project (2006-10-22). "Freeware Definition". Retrieved 2009-06-12.  

External links

Strategy wiki

Up to date as of January 23, 2010
(Redirected to Category:Freeware article)

From StrategyWiki, the free strategy guide and walkthrough wiki

Games which have been released for free as freeware.

Freeware is copyrighted computer software which is made available for use free of charge, for an unlimited time. Authors of freeware often want to "give something to the community", but also want credit for their software and to retain control of its future development.

Freeware is different from shareware, where the user is required to pay (e.g. after some trial period or for additional functionality). It should be noted that although free software is sometimes used as a synonym for freeware, it is not the same as Free Software (open source).

Pages in category "Freeware"

The following 20 pages are in this category, out of 20 total.






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  • Trust & Betrayal: The Legacy of Siboot



Up to date as of February 01, 2010

From Wikia Gaming, your source for walkthroughs, games, guides, and more!

Freeware is a term used to describe software that is given away without charge. For examples, see Category:Freeware games

See Also

External links

  • Snapfiles maintains a categorized list of downloadable freeware
This article is a stub. You can help by adding to it.

Stubs are articles that writers have begun work on, but are not yet complete enough to be considered finished articles.

This article uses material from the "Freeware" article on the Gaming wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

Simple English

Freeware is software that people may get without paying for it. It is not to be mixed up with free software. Freeware may be free in price, but the users might not be allowed to share the software or source code with others.

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