Free and useful files and links: 

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~ Alan's Programs ~ InternetMac Stuff ~ Primary ~ Intermediate ~ Secondary ~ Just for Teachers ~ Fonts ~Graphics  and Clipart ~ Music and Sound ~ Windows add-ons ~ Games ~ Misc~  Security

Note: in order to make use of many of these free programs, you will need a utility to uncompress the downloaded files prior to installing them onto your hard-drive. 

PC/Windows files with a name ending in .exe can be run as is, but those ending in .zip need to be 'unzipped'. Free alternatives include: 7- Zip or  IceowsAnother excellent free tool for opening or creating Zip and other compressed files you find on the Net is PowerArchiver. Windows ME and XP can unzip zip-files without additional software (but may want to try one of the free programs for additional features). B1 Free Archiver works on various platforms - Windows, Mac, Linux and Android. Supports most popular formats - rar, zip, 7z, b1, etc. It's very handy - most actions are performed with not more than 2-3 clicks.

Note as well: except where indicated, programs on these pages are for Windows 95/98/ME/NT/2000/XP etc. Mac, DOS, Windows 3.1 (and other minority platform) software is labelled as such. Life isn't fair.

Worth checking out: Alan's favourite Links-- part of his Free Software for Education presentation. Other free stuff compilations-PC Magazine's  The Best Free Software and MakeUseOf's Best Free Windows Software

For Mac-users, see PC Magazine's (yes, PC Magazine!) Best Free Mac Software 2012

Worth reading: TechLearning's 50 Free Tools to Make Computing Easier. (Free registration required). Or Extreme Tech's April 2010: 35 Best Free Apps for Any OS

Linux users: check this list of Linux Must-have Programs

For BC Teachers: The Provincial Ministry of Education has negotiated several province-wide software licenses. Some can be installed throughout your school either for free, or in other cases for a very modest fee. Examples include the All the Right Type keyboarding tutorial and the ACDSee picture management program. AppleWorks is a very good word processor/spreadsheet/graphics combination with both Mac and Windows versions available for an affordable $3.50 per computer. 

Or take a look at my presentation on free software for teachers...

This very page!


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Alan Zisman is a Vancouver educator, writer, and computer specialist. He can be reached at