Free Home Business Software – Open Source

I recently got a new computer and decided to use all free home business software.

Free home business software is called open source.

Free Open Source Software

Open source software stems from the philosophy that if a concept or a technology is open for everyone to use or build on, that it will get better through the collaborative efforts of many.

The other aspect of open source is that you do not have to pay a licensing fee to use it like you do non-open source.

Open source software can save a good bit of money in your home business.

You may want to also read the direct sales tools and software page.

WordPress Is Open Source

The WordPress blogging platform is an example of open source.

The founder of WordPress built his software on top of a previous open source software. He allows others to change it, use it, add plug-ins and theme to WordPress and enhance its capabilities. Basically anyone with a WordPress website is customizing the open source to meet their needs.
open source software

There are probably millions of people improving on WordPress every year through the addition of plug-ins, features and themes.

My guess is that every time an update for WordPress comes out, he is expanding WordPress features, based on the successful efforts of web designers and techies all over the world.

Free Home Business Software

Open source software for your business is free.

If you are getting a new computer for your home office that is not one “off the shelf” you will most likely have to buy the Microsoft Office Suite.

This licensing of software can cost you a pretty penny. In addition, if you are somewhat creative, you may need some extras like Photoshop or a file zip and others.

These are just a few of the open source software solutions that I have found and now use.

free home business

This is a suite of office software programs that replaces the Microsoft paid programs.

At first I was reluctant and unsure about making the switch in my office as I did not want my clients to have trouble opening my documents.

I have found it to be a non-event in that everything is business as usual.

OpenOffice opens all files including: Word documents, Excel spread sheets, .csv files, PowerPoint and more. The new files that it creates are compatible on everyone’s computer, and no one is the wiser of my new software. (I am having a bit of trouble with the label program though.)


Gimp is the photo editing software that I have installed. It is not quite all of what Photoshop offers, so a real artist would probably not be happy with it. For an average graphic creator like me, it is perfect and intuitive to use.

7 Zip:

This is to make zip files and replaces WinZip or ZipRar. I have found it to be the same, only free.


I am using this to replace my Outlook and I am in love with Thunderbird.

The transition was somewhat baffling and after being patient for a couple of days I am realizing that it is so much more than Outlook.

I am now using the calendar function and reminder features. I love the sort capabilities that can find a lost email for you and it even tells you if you forgot to add an attachment!! (“You said attachment; did you forget to add your attachment?”)

Free Home Business Software With Open Source

When you upgrade your computer and do not feel like investing your entire home business budget into software, you can really save some money with open source software.

A full suite of Photoshop for the first time buyer is over $1000!!

I am pleasantly surprised that the quality is the same and in most cases better than the controlled, paid-for software licensing required by Microsoft and others.

What Open Source Software Do You Use?

Please tell us about the open source software that you have used in your home office.

Make a comment below and we will send you the talking direct selling books: “Explode Expo Results”.

Let’s save some money and spread the word about how to break the chains connecting us to Microsoft!!


    Shared by: Donni:

    I have been using open source programs since the mid 2000s after my son began using them on a linux system.

    I use OO for everything I used to do in MS, Gimp instead of Photoshop, Thunderbird instead of Outlook, and I use a lot of free online graphics sites, such as,,,

    I recently found Airtable.

    Shared by: Donna:

    I LOVE Open Office also. I have been using it for a few years now. When I can’t open someones document, I can usually get Open Office to open it for me.

    Shared by: Deb Bixler:

    Really, it is not any thought or effort, all just works perfectly as I never start with an OO file. Make sense?

    Shared by: Deb Bixler:

    Actually Karen, I had to think about it a bit to answer that. I think this is what I did/do. My old computer had MS. So all my files were saved in that format. So, I put them on my new computer, then set Open Office for the default program. The when I start a new document, instead of opening an open office doc, I open an MS document with Open Office Writer which is seamless, then create my new document and just save it “save as” and it automatically saves in the MS format not the open office since that is what I opened. It is no work on my part and no one is the wiser.

    Shared by: Karen:

    Deb – I\’m not sure what you mean. You saved the old documents in MS and set THEM to open as an Open Office version? Or the other way around? My computer has vista and I do not have Ms Word on it. So all my documents are originally saved as an Open Office document. I can open MS Word documents but only if I save them first. I can not \

    Shared by: Karen:

    Deb – I’m not sure what you mean. You saved the old documents in MS and set THEM to open as an Open Office version? Or the other way around? My computer has vista and I do not have Ms Word on it. So all my documents are originally saved as an Open Office document. I can open MS Word documents but only if I save them first. I can not “open” them, I have to “save” them. So I have a lot of documents that I don’t want because I couldn’t view them first. :o( But, that’s okay! I still love the Open Office program.

    Shared by: Karen:

    I have been using OpenOffice for years. I found it at Walmart for about $12.00 and thought “Hey! That’s a lot cheaper than MS Office Suite!” Now you can get it for FREE!!

    When I share files, I’ve had issues with others not being able to open them tho. I just tell them to go get the FREE program and then they have no problems.

      Shared by: Deb Bixler:

      Karen, No one has ever told me that they can not open my files. Actually, maybe that is because I start with the old documents (saved when I was using the old computer was windows xp with MS and set open office for the default and then they automatically save into the standard format not the Open Office version.

    Shared by: Jenn Monterrozo:

    Finally installed Gimp. It’s gonna take me a bit to learn how to use it. Seems like it has a lot of features and will be very useful once I learn how to use it! 😉

      Shared by: Deb Bixler:

      I am still learning Gimp. Like photoshop (only free) there is a long term learning curve! I love open source and am willing to learn. Congratulations on the same, Jenn.

    Shared by: Jenn Monterrozo:

    I recently started using Thunderbird myself and have been very pleased. Think I’m going to give gimp a try. I’ve been looking for something that wasn’t going to cost me a fortune. Thanks for the ideas!


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