I love a bargain and free software. Don’t get me wrong. I buy what I use but I love doing more for less.
Free is less. And more. Here’s my most recent Top 10 List of free Mac applications.
#10 – NeoOffice:
If you can’t afford Microsoft Office but need compatibility, NeoOffice is the place to look.
Word and Excel compatibility is very good, PowerPoint is so so. Documents are interchangeable with Mac Office, Windows Office, and other Office wannabes.
#9 – Flip4Mac:
Microsoft has this thing about shipping free software for the Mac and dropped Internet Explorer and Windows Media Video Player.
Flip4Mac does what Windows Media Player didn’t do most of the time. It plays Windows Media videos, even inside Safari.
#8 – TextWrangler:
Puhleeze. If you need text editing (
not word processing
) and an editor that knows text, get the kid brother to the best.
BBEdit is considered a good reason to buy a Mac. TextWrangler is the free little brother to BBEdit.
#7 -Firefox & Thunderbird:
Yes, Mac OS X comes with Safari and it’s good. OS X comes with Mail, and it’s decent and getting better.
Both work well on a Mac and have a completely different feature set than Safari or Mail. Can’t be the price, right?
#6 – CyberDuck:
There’s no shortage of FTP and SFTP applications on the Mac.
Just be prepared to spend a little money. My favorite is Panic’s Transmit but only because my husband bought it years ago.
Need free? Use CyberDuck. It’s rock solid, reasonably fast, loaded with features. Did I mention that it’s free?
#5 – Adium:
Do you AIM? Or MSN? Or Yahoo? Or ICQ? Or Google IM?
Adium does all that and more, including Novell Groupwise, Lotus, tabbed messaging, encrypted chat, and a bunch of languages.
It’s free and has a cute icon. What else do you need? Version 1.0 was just released. That only took twenty eleven years, right?
#4 – ImageTricks:
I had to adjust my Top 10 List to include something for the graphics user.
Got tricks? Need tricks? ImageTricks lets you take photos or images and use OS X Tiger’s Core Image filters.
It’s not exactly useful if you don’t need it, but it’s a good way to spend hours of your life accomplishing not much. The end result is photos to wow your Windows friends. If you have any.
#3 – MAMP:
This excellent package of applications makes the list for the first time. Why? MAMP is for geeks, right? Or geek wannabes.
Expand your horizons. With OS X Tiger, your Mac is really a Unix server, and MAMP brings everything you need to begin, well, uh, serving.
MAMP stands for Mac, Apache (the world’s most popular web server), MySQL (the world’s most popular relational database server), and PHP (the powerful scripting engine software).
What you get for free is a simple drag and drop installation and you’re ready to begin practicing with some high powered web server software, even without an internect connection.
#2 – iBackup:
How much preaching can any reader handle? Backup, backup, backup.
Go for the expensive applications or try one that’s less expensive, as in free. iBackup is a backup and restore (vs. volume cloning) application which is loaded with preferences and features, yet it’s easy to use.
Did I mention that it’s free? There’s no excuse for not being able to back up data.
#1 – Vienna:
Stop the browsing nonesense. Are you tired of clicking to a hundred different sites a day just to keep up with what’s going on?
Let the web sites come to you with an excellent RSS and Atom reader for the Mac. It’s simple, it’s easy, it just works.
Vienna looks like Mac software, works like Mac software should, and it’s oh so very free.
That’s my newly updated Top 10 List. Of course, there’s probably a dozen more excellent Mac applications which need to fit into the list, but that would make it a Top 22 List and that just doesn’t sound right.
What’d I miss? Got a favorite not on the list? Share your favorite free Mac application or utility and tell us what needs to be on the list that’s not.