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May 4, 2010 4:27 PM   Subscribe

AlternativeTo finds substitutes to expensive and/or crappy desktop and mobile software. "Tell us what application you want to replace and we give you great alternatives, based on user recommendations."
posted by gman (15 comments total) 24 users marked this as a favorite
Ok, I tried 'Windows,' and it didn't say 'Linux.' What gives?

Looks like a great idea for a site, though! I've been dreaming of a better music player, according to my very particular definition of 'better.' Perhaps this will help...
posted by kaibutsu at 4:37 PM on May 4, 2010 [1 favorite]

I've gotta get this Something Seems To Be Broken package it keeps suggesting... it apparently is a good replacement for everything.
posted by crapmatic at 4:42 PM on May 4, 2010

Just in case it's not clear, you type in your search and then hit the 'Find alternatives to _______' link in the result.
posted by gman at 4:43 PM on May 4, 2010

In the same vein, there's, but specifically for open source alternatives.
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 4:53 PM on May 4, 2010

Here seems like a good place to say that I tried the new Ubuntu, and after sanding off the rough edges (by installing the right drivers and getting Gnome Do and Docky), I think I like it better than Windows 7 and Mac OSX, which I dual boot on my MacBook Pro. I uninstalled Windows 7, and now I'm just keeping Mac for my old software and TF2 (once they expand the beta).

Alternatives rock!
posted by mccarty.tim at 5:18 PM on May 4, 2010 [2 favorites]

Huh, I just found out through this that BumpTop got bought by Google and is only available for download for one more week. Wonder what they're going to do with it.
posted by chaff at 5:19 PM on May 4, 2010

I liked the looks of BumpTop but never installed it. Google has Chrome OS coming out, but that's mainly a web browser. I'm guessing Google will rebrand it and build it in to Google Desktop.
posted by mccarty.tim at 5:24 PM on May 4, 2010

I think this interface is a little confusing. Maybe it is just because they didn't have the first program I searched (Captivate, which seems weird). I don't know - it just seems busy. I kind of want an alternative to this site.

That said, I love this concept and will spend some time here trying to figure out how to avoid buying a bunch of Captivate licenses for my department.
posted by jeoc at 5:39 PM on May 4, 2010

Thunderbird (on Linux) has been bothering me off recently, so I tried that. Top alternative? Evolution.

Nice try, cure, but I'll take the disease.
posted by DU at 5:43 PM on May 4, 2010

The first thing I did was look up the application I currently support. No alternatives found - which is unfortunate, because this software package should seriously be a lot less clunky and error-prone than it is, and I think some healthy competition would give the suits some incentive to improve it. On the other hand, that would end up allowing them to cut way back on its support-staff costs in favor of I should probably be careful what I wish for....
posted by Greg_Ace at 7:22 PM on May 4, 2010


I'm Ola and are one of the co-founder of AlternativeTo. Thanks to gman for posting our site here!

The search is not perfect. When you do a generic search like "Windows" you hit a lot of applications like Windows Media Player and so on. Windows is listed as Windows 7 and you can find alternatives to it here .. Ubuntu is the top alternative! We will spend some time and try to make the search better!

We would be really happy if you could report to us how you got the error page? Did you get it when you did a search? I will take a look at the error log today and see what i can find. But please drop us an e-mail at and we will try to track down this problem.

It was actually weird that we do not have Adobe Captivate in our database. I will add it right now! And as you may have noticed it's possible to add applications to our database by just signing up with OpenID or Facebook Connect. I use it a lot to add apps that i do not know any alternatives to and hope that somebody will add a new alternatives. Is this an alternative to Camtasia and so on? Anyway i added it now:

Hehe, what application is it that you work for?

And thanks again for the comments and hope you continue to use the site and tell your friends about it!

posted by alternativeto at 1:51 AM on May 5, 2010

crapmatic: I think i found the bug you had issues with? You got it when you clicked the search icon without adding any text to the searchbox right? It's fixed now!
posted by alternativeto at 8:13 AM on May 5, 2010

...BumpTop got bought by Google and is only available for download for one more week. Wonder what they're going to do with it

BumpTop seems a good fit for iPad-like devices. Which might explain Google's interest.
posted by punilux at 11:58 AM on May 5, 2010

I've been using this site for a few months now and I like it. It doesn't replace Softpedia and Tucows but the narrow focus of the search results provides a good quick reference. Still no real alternative to Calibre but I keep hoping.

Thanks for the visit Ola.
posted by irisclara at 2:22 PM on May 5, 2010

The site is quite useful; it assisted in a recent migration.
posted by WCityMike at 3:30 PM on May 5, 2010

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