Free software movement

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Free software is software that is made available under a license that grants the user specific rights that are not typically granted for proprietary software, which include:

  • Run the program for any purpose
  • Study how the software works and modify it to meet your needs
  • Distribute copies of the software
  • Publish modifications to the software

In order to fulfill these requirements access to the source code is essential, so free software is a type of open source software. The right to distribute the software may be subject to a clause that ensures that future recipients of the software have the same freedoms.

Examples of free software are the Linux operating system and the Apache web server.