Freeware and Shareware
Cut down on buying expensive software for just the odd use
There are some who, when they want an anti-virus programme for their PC,
Freeware is just that, a completely free programme which you can download for nothing.These can range from PC Speed up utilities to Digital Photography editing.
Especially useful are spyware and firewall programmes. On many websites you go on (not this one) they will leave a cookie in your PC, a small nosey parker which passes information on to a company which keeps track of your viewing habits etc. These are used for marketing and advertising purposes.
By installing a free anti-spyware programme, you can run these to show you the spyware cookies you have accumulated over any given time and delete them if you wish.
Some cookies however, you may like to keep, for instance forums or sites where you have a login and password, but these shouldn't show up on anti-spyware anyway.
There are literally hundreds of freeware tools for 'making your PC run faster' etc., and one should research these with care and don't overload your PC with things which are going to interfere with each other ie. Registry Cleaners, Dead file clearance etc. Also, watch all the windows on the install as you don't want too many things starting on PC logon and running in the background using up valuable PC resources. Most programmes are quite OK by just turning them on when you want them.
It seems that the definition of Shareware is 'try before you buy', 'trial' or 'demo'.
These are programmes which ultimately you have to purchase, if you want them. Some don't give you the full version, but enough to try it out.
Shareware is particularly useful on the more expensive stuff. For example, I brought a camcorder and needed a software programme to 'author' DVD's.
By using the demo / trial method, I whittled down from six to one. Some of the programmes crashed my PC, some were too clever for me and some I just didn't get on with the interface.
This particularly useful if you've borrowed a camcorder and just want to make a DVD or PC file as a one off.
The same applied to owning a good Digital Photography editor, although none crashed the PC, I wanted one which would optimize my photos best for putting on the website and secondly 'non hi-tech ease of use' to fiddle around with them.
What you can also do with Shareware is to have a continuous utility, albeit some other companies every 30 days or so (although I don't suggest this on Anti-Virus and Firewall programmes as some are hard to delete off your computer and you have problems).
If a relative or friend has a PC (and preferably Broadband),
this opens up a free world to communication.
For the price of a microphone you can use various
mostly free, such as Messenger or Skype and
speak / listen
to them as if they're in the room with you. A
will cost you about £5 upwards and the off-cost to making
phone calls, especially abroad, are well - the skys the limit !
Add a webcam as well and you've got video conferencing. Just plug it in, open up the programme, make sure the other person is online, call them and you see and speak to them and vice versa.
It never ceases to amaze me why on these TV programmes of people moving to the other side of the world use the telephone. It costa money and they don't get to see the grandkids etc., growing up !