Best Open Source Software


Are you interested in the night sky? If the answer is yes, Stellarium is a must have. It transforms your computer into a planetarium showing a realistic sky in 3D. Its catalogue includes over 600,000 stars, with extra catalogues with more than 210 million stars available. It includes images of nebulae, the Milky Way, planets and their satellites and much more. Astronomers will be in heaven.

Stellarium is actively maintained for all 3 platforms. A graphics card capable of rendering OpenGL 3.1 is required. This software is fairly CPU intensive, so to get high framerates you need a fast processor, but any reasonably recent PC should run the software well.

Developer: Alexander Wolf, Georg Zotti, Marcos Cardinot, Guillaume Chéreau, Bogdan Marinov, Timothy Reaves, Florian Schaukowitsch
License: GNU General Public License v2
Written in: C++

GNU Octave

GNU Octave is a programming language for scientific computing. It provides a firm platform for a wide range of mathematical problems. GNU Octave is particularly strong in the field of statistical analysis and signal processing. It is excellent for both students and professionals alike.

Executable versions of GNU Octave are provided by the individual Linux and BSD distributions. Distributions that offer Octave include Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora, Gentoo, openSUSE, FreeBSD, and OpenBSD. These packages are created by volunteers. GNU Octave for Mac OS X is available using package managers such as Fink, MacPorts, and Homebrew

Developer: John W. Eaton and many contributors
License: GPL
Written in: C, C++, Fortran


R is a programming language and software environment for statistical computing and graphics. It consists of a language and a run-time environment with graphics, a debugger, access to certain system functions, and the ability to run programs stored in script files. It generates well-designed publication-quality plots, including mathematical symbols and formulae. It is accomplished in the fields of numerical analysis and machine learning. It is mature software, developed and refined for more than two decades. If you are looking to solve data-oriented problems, R could be just the ticket.

The developers provide packages for Debian and Ubuntu. All major distributions provide packages for R. There are pre-compiled binaries for Windows and Mac users.

Developer: R Core Team
License: GNU-style copyleft
Written in: C, Fortran, R


LaTeX is a high-quality document typesetting system; it includes features designed for the production of technical and scientific documentation. LaTeX is the de facto standard for the communication and publication of scientific documents, but it can be used for all types of publishing.

LaTeX is distributed through CTAN servers or comes as part of many easily installable and usable TeX distributions provided by the TeX User Group (TUG) or third parties

Developer: Leslie Lamport
License: LaTeX Project Public License
Written in: WEB


PSPP is a stable alternative for IBM SPSS Statistics. This sofware application is ideal for analysis of sampled data. It provides a comprehensive set of capabilities including frequencies, cross-tabs comparison of means (t-tests and one-way ANOVA); linear regression, logistic regression, reliability, and re-ordering data, non-parametric tests, factor analysis, cluster analysis, and more.

GNU Project does not distribute precompiled binaries of PSPP, but there are official packages for popular Linux distributions. Third parties produce binaries for Windows and OS X.

Developer: GNU Project
License: GNU GPL v3 or later
Written in: C

1WorkLibreOffice, Calligra, Scribus, ProjectLibre, MariaDB, Calibre, FocusWriter, LyX Document Processor, Okular, KMyMoney, GnuCash, Zathura, CherryTree, FreeMind, MyNotex
2DevelopmentCode::Blocks, Eclipse, GCC, Bluefish, OpenShift Origin, Docker, Git, Google Web Toolkit, Vim, Meld, Django, XAMPP, Atom
3Games0 A.D, Battle for Wesnoth, Freeciv, Xonotic, Magarena
4InternetChromium, Thunderbird, Pidgin, Tor, Telegram Desktop, Dropbox, OwnCloud, FileZilla, HexChat, QuiteRSS, uGet, Gufw, Aria2, OpenSSH
5MediaKodi, VLC, OpenShot Video Editor, Amarok, Kdenlive, Audacity, Blender, Inkscape, Darktable, Handbrake, digiKam, GIMP, Beets, mpv
6ToolsVirtualBox, BleachBit, ClamAV, Déjà Dup, Redo Backup, GParted, VeraCrypt, Wine, K3b, Clonezilla, Shutter, KeePassX, PeaZip, GCstar, Terminator, FontForge, Recoll, Dolphin, Midnight Commander
7ScienceStellarium, GNU Octave, R, LaTeX, PSPP