Have been considering making a small contribution

  wee eddie 14:23 10 Nov 2016

I have been considering making a small contribution to the makers of the Free Software Programs that I use regularly.

I have no desire to upgrade to their "Paid For" Versions, as in almost all cases the "Free" version fits all my requirements.

I would be happy to contribute something between £2 and £5 each year.

Anyone got any idea how I might go about doing this?

  Forum Editor 15:26 10 Nov 2016

The free versions are offered in the hope that you will pay for the full licence, and usually there's an inducement to do so in the form of more features/no advertising, etc.

I'm fairly sure that software companies will respond to any suggestion of voluntary payments by saying 'why don't you just pay for the licence?' and I confess I would say the same thing in their shoes.

One-person software developers often have a voluntary contribution link on the download page, and you can pay as often as you like.

  wee eddie 16:36 10 Nov 2016

I understand that, but the full version of CCleaner and Malwarebytes both contain many parts that I neither need nor want, and I am not sufficiently sure of my technical competence to disable those unwanted parts.

  Quickbeam 16:52 10 Nov 2016

I pay for the licence for Faststone Image Viewer, a simple and easy to use image editor that's much quicker to do basic edits with than going into a full function editor. And Any Video Converter for the same reasons to quickly put something on Facebook.

  Forum Editor 16:55 10 Nov 2016

You've mentioned two of the most popular free utilities on the web.

Imagine this - you are a software company, and you've developed a malware scanning application. The work is done, and the product has many options. Offering a free version, stripped of the bells and whistles, but with the core functionality remaining costs you nothing extra except the price of running a download server.

What it does, however, is spread the word - your product is downloaded millions of times, and a fair proportion of down loaders like it so much they buy the bells and whistles upgrade. The remainder continue to praise the product in web forums, so your product's public profile is excellent. You carry on with the free version, and occasionally pop up a nag message, encouraging people to upgrade. It's the price they pay for getting something for nothing.

Everyone is happy.

Does that make you feel a little more comfortable?

  QuizMan 23:18 10 Nov 2016

I am with wee eddie on this, certainly so far as CCleaner is concerned. Last year, I was feeling a bit guilty of using the free version for so many years that I upgraded to Pro. A mistake, I think. I found it to be a bit intrusive and over-powering and I couldn't work out how to tone it down. All I want from it is to clean up internet browsing and temporary files, gentle registry clean up and check on start items. All of these I could do from the free version. So, when the Pro version came up for renewal, I declined and am perfectly happy with the free one.

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