Application lists

Time is short today, so I have only a brief list of sites that mention software alternatives.

Some of these are explicitly aimed at life without X, while others are concerned mostly with making a transition between Windows and Linux.

Regardless of their focus, they’re fun to browse when you want ideas for new software to try, or if you need an analogue for something you already use.

Jared’s CLI apps list This isn’t the first time I’ve mentioned this page, but it’s still my favorite list of CLI applications. That’s mostly because it doesn’t pretend to be anything more than that: a list of CLI applications. It’s perfect for scouting a particular task and finding a console solution. I’ve scraped through the list dozens of times, and I still keep finding new stuff. Thanks, Jared. 😉 I mention this out of a sense of obligation; it’s one of the first places I used to look when I started to prefer console apps over GUI software. These days though, it seems less useful than it once did. There are a few gems here and there, but you have to really pick through the list to find them. And ironically, it’s not particularly comfortable for a text browser. 🙄
Converting to Open Source Laura Michaels has an interesting list of applications available for people thinking of switching. It’s a little out of date (okay, more than a little), but I find that to be useful: It doesn’t list a lot of the bottom-heavy frontrunner applications that are commonplace today. It’s not all terminal programs, but it’s definitely worth skimming at least once.
Slax software list As if there wasn’t enough already to make Slax a miracle sent from heaven, you can actually filter its software database for applications that run at the console. Be careful when you do that though — you’re guaranteed hours upon hours of wading through lists of programs that you can’t wait to try out. Best save this one for a rainy day. 😉’s text mode software list In German, but that shouldn’t dissuade you from using it as a source of software ideas. Neatly organized and categorized, easy to skim and fun to explore. Be sure to look though the “Spiele und Spass” (fun and games) section. And if the language proves to be a barrier, ask Google for help.
Life in Text Mode Over at is a fun list of practical software used by someone like me, who preferred the prompt to the mouse. It’s a few years old, but I would bet that 90 percent of the applications listed there are still actively developed — which means they’re not only mainstream, but they’re popular for a reason. Technically the writer was an ion user, but that’s nothing to quibble over … particularly so long as I am using Musca on two machines. 😐 I suppose no list would be complete without, which I must say I never used personally but has been a godsend to two or three other people who’ve switched under my tutelage. Whether or not it is useful to you remains to be seen. It’s definitely not focused on the command line, but you shouldn’t let that dissuade you from checking it out.

That is about all I have now. There are dozens more out there; feel free to suggest some more.


6 thoughts on “Application lists

  1. CorkyAgain


    Searching for “ncurses” works equally well on Google Code — especially if you go to the “Project Hosting” tab.

  2. Pingback: Links 21/8/2010: X Server 1.9.0, Droid 2 | Techrights

  3. LM

    Thanks for mentioning my site. I enjoy reading yours and finding new ideas for applications as well. I do try to keep my pages up-to-date and add new applications I find useful. However, I don’t have a problem with running Open Source applications that are no longer widely used or supported especially if I like them. I have a growing page of patches for programs that may no longer be maintained but could still build with some modifications and for programs that the developers don’t want to port to other platforms.


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