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What is the difference between open-source software, free software and freeware.
What is free and open-source software
- Free software/ Libre software
- Freeware software - Generally everyone refers as Free software
Open-source software (OSS) is a type of computer software in which source code is released under a license in which the holder grants users the rights to
- distribute the software to anyone and for any purpose.
There are many liscenses under open-source, so all the open-source softwares need not to be free.
Eg: Firefox, Linux etc..
Free software/ Libre software:
Free software (or libre software) is a software that is available freely to users at no cost and it is open-source.
“Free software” means software that respects users’ freedom and community. Roughly, it means that the users have the freedom to run, copy, distribute, study, change and improve the software.
Thus, “free software” is a matter of liberty, not price.
To understand the concept, you should think of “free” as in “free speech”, not as in “free beer”.
There are 4 principles for free software.
- Freedom 0: The freedom to run the program for any purpose.
- Freedom 1: The freedom to study how the program works, and change it to make it do what you wish.
- Freedom 2: The freedom to redistribute and make copies so you can help your neighbour.
- Freedom 3: The freedom to improve the program, and release your improvements (and modified versions in general) to the public, so that the whole community benefits.
All Free softwares are open-source, but all open-source softwares are need not to be Free
Eg: Firefox, Linux, Debian, Gnome etc..
Freeware / Free Software:
Freeware is software, most often proprietary, that is distributed at no monetary cost to the end user.
- Unlike with free and open-source software, which are also often distributed free of charge, the source code for freeware is typically not made available.
These are technically reffered as Freeware.
Eg: Google Chrome, many free apps that you download from Playstore and Appstore.