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Software store/market for Windows with freeware?

I'm wondering if there is any good App Store for Windows.
I stumbled on allmyApps, and this question, but surely there are more out there.

My dream Windows App Store would do things like:

  1. Allow me to download and install software
  2. Allow me to pay for apps
  3. Check which apps are already registered on my machine and keep track of them
  4. Keep track of all my machines
  5. Keep track of available upgrades and easily deploy them.
  6. Let me discover new apps that may be useful

I know this is utopian on the Windows platform since development, upgrading, purchasing are so fragmented, but the Apple Store, Chrome App store, etc do make your life easier.
Just trying to find something to ease the pain a little bit...

So, are there any good services/software out there that would help me achieve some of the listed goals?

  • 2
    Store? All you need is MSDN and Steam. Visual studios/ Office during the day. COD & BF:BC2 during the night!!
    – surfasb
    Jul 8, 2011 at 7:27
  • 4
    I thought the whole advantage of Windows was not having an "app store"... Jul 8, 2011 at 17:16
  • @Breakthrough: that you can install software independently is great, but having an app store is certainly not a disadvantage: keeping track of all the stuf you install over time, making sure everything is up-to-date, etc, and managing your installs over multiple machines is fairly painful. Having a simple, unified interface for all these operations would make things much easier for most classes of users, power users included. Jul 9, 2011 at 3:48
  • RuckZuck is a solution - all other alternatives are listed at alternativeto.net/software/ruckzuck
    – koppor
    Sep 25, 2015 at 12:58

6 Answers 6


There are 2 sites I know:

  1. Intel AppUp - tries to be an app store, has all the "usual suspects" (Angry Birds, Fruit Ninja etc) and even has a developer program
  2. Ninite - sorta, but not the same. Allows you to pick several freeware/shareware apps and package them into a single installer. If you run it on multiple computers, you're guaranteed the same install base. And it supports updates.
  • Ninite looks very interesting for deploying a number of apps to lots of machines at the same time. Thanks for that. Jul 9, 2011 at 3:39
  • Yes it is - and it allows for silent installations as well. Jul 10, 2011 at 22:24

As stated, such an app store does not currently exist. HOWEVER, it is my understanding that Microsoft is working on one for the next version of Windows - there have been several leaked reports suggesting this - a simple google "Windows 8 App Store" should provide you with more info on this.

  • Weren't they supposed to give us one for Windows 7? Ultimate edition came with a promise of new features being available for download and installation. Jul 8, 2011 at 19:05
  • We'll have to see what this store is made of. At teh moment, the only information I've seen on this is a screenshot showing a store logo. I'm more concerned about MS getting the system right. Their previous attempts where half-baked and the implementation was bad enough that very few people bothered. Hope it will be different next time, and that this will also be available on Win 7. Jul 9, 2011 at 3:44
  • This is actually not a real answer. The question was "if there is", NOT "speculations on if there will be"!
    – TFM
    Jul 9, 2011 at 4:39

Except of the sidebar gadget download section there is no app shop for widows. There may be third party things like that, but no native Microsoft one. If you want to use third party software like allmyApps or something like it, you will be disappointed because there is no really useful software in it. Most of those third party "AppShops" only contain tiny fun application for high prices which does not make any sense. The really closest thing to an appstore for windows is the chrome app store.


Correct me if I'm wrong, but wouldn't Steam be considered "an app store for windows". Just so happens that the store only contains games...

Following this idea, Direct2Drive... Games for Windows Live... Maybe even Good old Games if you don't mind it being entirely within the web browser...

  • True, these services are useful, although their scope is very limited since they only care about gaming, and each will only support some games, not most of them. Jul 9, 2011 at 3:35

Windows Marketplace has been available since Windows 95. Until 2008 this was very similar to what we now know as an app store: 3rd parties could submit software products for inclusion in the store. Microsoft would then vet the products for quality (they had to pass Windows Logo certification) and handle the monetary transactions, just like a modern app store. Of course, back in the Windows 95 days that most often meant shipping you a boxed installation CD after purchase, but there were some downloads as well.

Unfortunately, software vendors prior to the iPhone just weren't interested in the process. By the time the app store concept was validated Windows Marketplace was a damaged brand by the time Apple proved the App Store concept workable. Microsoft is now in the process of rebuilding Windows Marketplace as the Microsoft Store, but they no longer accept 3rd party software.

There are a number of products out there that would just love to take up the slack and become the new Windows App Store. However, what makes the app stores work for Apple and Google is that they are the premier and supported way for getting apps onto those platforms. This enables the stores to simultaneously attract both customers and developer submissions. Any similar option for Windows would have to be heavily promoted by Microsoft.

  • Back in the days when 512Mb of RAM was still plenty, the number of items on your start menu was actually a performance concern. If you spilled over to two columns on a large monitor the bitmap rendered behind the scenes for the menu used a significant chunk of RAM. If I had a user with a two-column menu, the Windows Marketplace icon was an easy choice for "consolidation" to help them get back to a more-reasonable sized menu. Jul 8, 2011 at 19:10
  • It's a shame that MS can't and won't create a real app store with an easy way for developers to submit their apps. A well integrated store in Windows, with some stricter guidelines on the requirements for submission would be a boon to MS, the developers and users. Jul 9, 2011 at 3:41

LiberKey is a portable apps manager that can do part of what you want:

FEATURE                                                                      |AVAILABILITY
Allow me to download and install software                                    | YES
Allow me to pay for apps                                                     | NO¹
Check which apps are already registered on my machine and keep track of them | YES
Keep track of all my machines                                                | NO²
Keep track of available upgrades and easily deploy them.                     | YES
Let me discover new apps that may be useful                                  | YES

¹: There isn't "payment" interface. Most of the software are freeware and open source ones.

²: There isn't yet, but you use a merge tool to compare 2 installations or can use a pendrive to export all installation from a machine to another.

  • Useful tool. Falls short of what we could expect of a broader app store, but it's still a pretty good service. Jul 9, 2011 at 3:38

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