Top Seven Free Downloads for PC

by on May 14th, 2011

If you are running on a Windows operating system, there are several free downloads that provide extra productivity for your computer while saving you hundreds of dollars in software costs.

1. Open Office

With Open Office you can do almost anything you could with Microsoft Office. This free down-loadable software package includes equivalents to Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. The software also recognizes and opens files saved in a Microsoft Office format. Open Office is not quite as powerful as the Microsoft version, but it has plenty of features that would work fine in a personal or small business setting.

2. Windows Live SkyDrive

This free service allows you to upload as much as 25 GB of data to an online server. The files you upload remain safe so you can retrieve them if anything happened to your computer hard drive. If you have anything valuable on your computer that you don’t want to lose, this free service is definitely worth the requirement of setting up a Windows Live ID or a Hotmail address.

3. Avast Free Anti-virus 6

Everyone has a favorite free anti-virus software package. There are hundreds of good quality programs to choose from online. Avast Free Anti-virus 6 is the best anti-virus software for those who prefer to keep the anti-virus operations in the background while you are doing other things on your computer. Avast offers free updates so that you stay protected from the most recent types of viruses trolling the internet.

4. Skype

If you have a webcam and internet access, you can enjoy free video chats with anyone else who has a webcam and internet access. Skype brings the magic of teleconferencing to your living room or favorite cafe free. The calls you make through Skype can reach anyone around the world. Skype is the ideal way to keep in touch, especially if you want to watch a grandchild grow up or visit with many people at once. The only cost is the amount you pay for your internet connection.

5. Windows Live Photo Gallery

The Windows Live Photo Gallery allows you to upload thousands of photos to an online server that will sort them for you. If you tag a person in one photo, the Gallery will go through all of your photos and tag that person in each of them. The Gallery also includes some powerful editing software that is fun and easy to use.

6. VLC Media Player

One of the most comprehensive media players available is a free download that will work on any Windows computer. VLC Media player recognizes dozens of video formats and plays them all flawlessly on your computer. The software even plays obscure file formats like MKV. If you have an extensive media library, VLC Media Player is a necessity.


The GNU Image Manipulation Program, or GIMP, is an excellent alternative to expensive photo editors like Adobe Photoshop. GIMP is more powerful than some other free photo editors. It includes tools that will allow you to clean up images, but you can also manipulate the images using intricate filters and tools. The interface is relatively easy to understand, which means there is not a steep learning curve when you first start using this free software.

The Author

Jessica Bosari enjoys writing about software for This sites helps students with questions about computer information systems careers and other technology jobs, while helping them find the best schools for training.

2 Reviews

  1. Ge_Py says:

    Have you ever considered SSuite Office as a free office suite solution?

    Their software also doesn’t need to run on Java or .NET, like MS Office and so many open source office suites, so it makes their software very small, efficient, and easy to use. :)

  2. Sumeet Kumar says:

    Add Avira Antivir also in list…