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I once found a website that listed popular programs (eg. Photoshop) and alternatives (eg. Paint.NET).

Any idea which website it was? I need to find an alternative to a software that doesn't work reliable anymore, and so I'm searching for this site.

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Note that this question is asking about a website, which is quite on the border of allowed questions in here. However, the website asked is about alternatives to different computer programs, which is then completely on topic (I guess, at least). –  Gnoupi Jan 26 '10 at 15:09
    
@Gnoupi - No, actually you're misinterpreting there. Questions about sites (like facebook, gmail, ...) regarding those sites are discouraged. But! mentioning some site he once saw, and would like to find again, or mentioning it as a source of information, which he's looking for, is by my reasoning, perfectly on topic (as long as the main question discussed is on topic). –  ldigas Jan 26 '10 at 22:10
    
@Idigas - well, that's mostly what I said (or at least tried to). I added this only as "shield", regarding to the number of website questions we close, explaining why this one is actually good. Hopefully you explained it better, my English fails me sometimes. –  Gnoupi Jan 27 '10 at 8:31

8 Answers 8

up vote 21 down vote accepted

there is a website exactly for this where you can find alternatives for different software that you are using: http://alternativeto.net/

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Great site! It looks like a combination of all the "must have" and "best alternatives to" that people would be tempted to post on SU. Now I know where to redirect them :-] Joke aside, very good site. –  Gnoupi Jan 26 '10 at 14:51
    
Exactly the website I was looking for! Thanks so much and I'm off to begin my search on AlternativeTo.net ... its a great find. –  Jarvis Jan 26 '10 at 15:43

have you tried lifehacker.com? Lifehacker is a famous and very high quality site that strives to find better alternatives to things we are already doing. Alternative software is mentioned a lot. Try searching 'best image editor' or whetever you need.

alt text

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Someone already mentioned CNET's Download.com

Especially for specific versions of programs, there are sites like FileHippo

Also, though I've never got around to using it, Wakoopa seems like they'd know what applications correspond to each other. You can view what programs people use if they have opted to share that on the site and most people I know like to have several related programs for a given area of interest.

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Any idea which website it was?

Osalt.com - Find open source software alternatives to well-known commercial software

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Nice one, though its not the exact site. –  Jarvis Jan 26 '10 at 14:18
    
actually, google does a pretty good job as well: 'program XYZ' free alternative :) –  Molly7244 Jan 26 '10 at 14:31

One simple way is to simply type [product name] vs into google and look at the list of suggestions. It doesn't always work, but often can be a real time saver.

For example the results for Notepad++ are:

  • textpad
  • notepad2
  • pspad
  • ultraedit
  • editplus
  • vim
  • scite
  • crimson editor
  • context
  • jedit
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1  
my only concern with that is you can end up with some questionable software...if you find something that you like, check it at a reputable site like Lifehacker or CNet or SourceForge –  studiohack Feb 8 '10 at 23:34

superuser.com suits fine for such a site :-)

If you need suggestions about software alternatives, just ask here!

However, it's not wise to ask for "an alternative for Photoshop" for example. You shall always assume that the guys who will read your question might not know what's Photoshop.

Naming the main purpose of the software you're looking for and key features that you need is much better. If you do this, adding "I've been using Photoshop for this, but I want an alternative" makes much more sense now.

It is also a good idea to specify the reasons (technical ones) why are you looking for an alternative. Some people start looking for alternative software when they can't complete a certain particular task. This might happen because the software in question is missing a feature. But this can happen as well simply because the user is not aware of the feature he is needing, software can be pretty complex nowadays. Stating the problem exactly increases the chances that somebody who know about a way do do it with the mentioned software will provide a hint.

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The good old SourceForge may be also an alternative.

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Why not post a question here?

Does anyone know of an alternative to X? I need something that will cope with Y / is free / will run under my operating system

Alternatively, post the details of the problem. Someone may be able to solve it for you.

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