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Folks at PC World has recently compiled a list of 20 fantastic open source software. Yes, these software are free but that doesn’t mean they are no good. Many of these programs are superior to packaged or commercial software. Among the 20 software listed, I have personally tried some of them, and my favorites are the following few:

7-Zip
I know Microsoft Windows includes a built-in archiving utility that can compress and decompress files in the .Zip format. But, what about other formats, such as gzip, tar, bzip2, and rar. The solution is to use 7-Zip.

EMule
EMule is a great file-sharing client which lets you search for, download, and share files with other users.

DOSBox

The list also lists a couple of weird programs. One of them is DOSBox which I myself have never heard of before but proves to be worthy a download. DOSBox is specially designed for a retro kind of guy or gal. If for example, you are frustrated by your inability to play old DOS-based games, then this free software is for you! DOSBox does a great job of emulating the old good DOS. Install and run DOSBox, then run any DOS game – or DOS application, for that matter – inside it.

One great free software they miss out is VLC media player. When it comes to video files, nothing is ever as good as VLC, which supports playback of OGG, MP2, MP3, MP4, DivX, DVD, and a whole slew of other video file types. In short, VLC Media Player is a must-have application for its ability to open just about any type of video file you throw at it.

If 20 open source downloads are not enough for you, then you can try sourceforge.net – the ultimate open source software resource.