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Downloading 2

Shareware, freeware, beta software, adware... What does it mean?

Freeware or public domain software, is, as its name indicates, free. You can use it for as long as you wish and not pay a thing . This does not mean that you own the software, it remains the author's intellectual property and the copyright is usually kept by them.

Shareware is software distributed on a "try before you buy basis". You can use the program for a nominal period, after which, if you like it, you pay a registration fee. To encourage such payments the registered version may include additional features and/or disable reminder screens that identify the program as unregistered.

Trialware is fully functional software which can be used for a set period of time, a number days or a number of uses, after which it will stop working.

Beta Software
Beta versions of software are not-quite-completed versions of programs released for public testing. They may run smoothly or not...

Commercial Software
For commerial software the Internet gives an effective means to distribute applications, progam manuals and updates. Anti-virus programs in particular require updating regularly to detect new viruses. The new virus definition data is made available via a download. Upgrades, bug fixes, add-ons such as templates and improved drivers for peripheral devices such as printers, can all be provided in this manner.

While many commercial software packages can be purchased online, the file size of some applications may prohibit them from being easily downloadable.

Adware or Spyware
Under the guise of advertising, some freeware, shareware and trial version programs that you may download, contain components which utilise the Net to send user data back to their parent companies. If displaying an advertisement was all that these components did then this may seem reasonable... Advertising sponsored software development.

One of the single largest sources of Adware/Spyware intelligence.

Where are the Files?

CNet: Describes and rates thousands of files.

Features software for most operating systems.

Free software. Paid subscription and limited Free access.

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