The 12 Safest Free Software Download Sites for Linux
Linux is an open source operating system with a larger community of contributors than other operating systems. However, sometimes downloading software for your Linux system can be risky due to security reasons.
The internet is flooded with spyware, especially on websites offering free applications, where some contributors try to exploit users through malicious files. This is why it is always recommended to use genuine websites to get an app.
Although viruses are rare in Linux, taking precautionary measures still doesn’t hurt. So we have compiled a handpicked list of the safest websites you can use to download Linux software for free without worrying about malware.
GitHub is a cloud-based platform that allows developers to store, manage, and publish software. It has a comprehensive community of Linux developers and verified organizations.
This website is a collaboration platform to rate an app on metrics like stars, views, and number of developers. Anyone can analyze the code as the software source code is available on the repositories.
With this transparency, you can identify any harmful code present in the repository. GitHub has strong security policies and takes immediate action if an exploit is reported.
These security measures make GitHub one of the safest sources for downloading Linux software. You will find almost all the apps available for free download on this site.
During your Linux journey, you must have installed applications via the “sudo snap” command at some point. This is the command to download apps from the Snap Store.
Snap Store by Snapcraft is a software store for all snap packages, developed by Canonical Group, the developer of Ubuntu. This is one of the reasons why it is trusted and considered a safe source of software.
Snapcraft has a strong bundled dependencies mechanism, which makes it safer and more reliable. This means that you don’t need to install dependencies from other sources that could make apps vulnerable.
Second, Instant Apps run in a sandbox environment omitting external interference. So you can download apps through the Snap Store without worrying about security vulnerabilities.
Like Snap Store, Flathub also offers a wide range of Linux apps. You can download software from the website or install it through the command line. It contains all the popular applications needed for your Linux desktop.
Similar to Snap Store, Flatpak packages also run in a sandbox environment which means an app installed from Flathub will not interfere with system files and vice versa.
This practice makes Flathub safe and reliable, as the apps are self-contained. Thus, you don’t have to worry about their effect on the system.
Softpedia is a news website that also offers Linux apps. Initially, it provided missing drivers for operating systems, but expanded its portfolio over time.
The website also provides ratings and reviews and has a unique feature that prevents wrapping downloaded apps with adware or sponsored content.
Softpedia uses safe practices to keep software harmless, such as checking downloaded apps with antivirus software. If adware is embedded in the application packages, it removes it, making it a safe download source for Linux applications.
F-Droid is a popular FOSS (Free and Open-Source Software) store. It mainly targets Android, which is also a Linux-based system. You can check app news, reviews and updates on this website.
F-Droid does not log your information when you install an app, making it difficult for hackers to gather your information and exploit your system. As all apps in the store are open source, their source code is available for free.
SourceForge has a huge library of open source software with tons of daily users around the world. The website also has a blog and reviews apps. You can choose an application for your Linux system from the different categories offered.
One of the advantages of using SourceForge is that it is free of adware. It scans all apps downloaded from the platform. The malware scanner also checks for malicious embedded files. And in case it finds any malware, it will show a warning about the project.
DownloadCrew is a store that offers a collection of apps with different licenses. Some are free, while others are paid.
You can download Linux applications from more than 15 categories. Also, it offers daily giveaways, reviews, recommendations, and app news. The website has an excellent trust score on ScamAdviser.com.
DownloadCrew also offers promotional and discount codes for paid software. More importantly, the site regularly scans apps uploaded to the platform for malware.
As its name suggests, Linux-Apps is a store dedicated to Linux software. It offers a good range of open source Linux applications, free to download for everyone.
You can see a list of apps sorted by latest entries or ratings. The ratings and reviews on the website help you understand the apps better before downloading them.
Linux-Apps is a reliable store. It has a large community and allows users and developers to interact with each other, which is very helpful in keeping the environment safe.
Pkgs.org is a search engine for Linux distributions and repositories. A package is a compressed set that contains different applications, usually in a repository. Pkgs.org supports all major Linux distributions.
The website provides a clean interface to download Linux packages without any adware. The purpose of the website is to facilitate your access to these secure files.
Debian Packages is a minimal website that provides packages for Debian-based Linux distributions such as Ubuntu. This means that you will also find packages here for all Ubuntu-based systems.
Most of the apps provided are free and there is a separate section for paid apps. You can also find blogs and app news on this website.
Packages are divided into stable, testing, and unstable categories with a wide range of subcategories below. As this is an official Debian website, you can rest assured that the packages offered are safe and reliable to download.
RPMFind is a simple website that has indexed different Linux packages. It offers a wide range of packages for all Linux distributions that use RPM installation files. The site also helps automate updates to apps and packages.
RPMFind mirrors all packages found in repositories and scans repositories to identify dependencies. This feature also helps detect any malicious dependencies, making RPMFind a safe source for your software needs.
Advanced Linux users tend to build applications from source. This is where Open Build Service comes in handy. It helps users build packages from source and eases the distribution process.
Open Build Service emphasizes transparency. Thus, you can trust the packages offered. Since each build package and repository targets specific users, they are less likely to be exploited by attackers.
Explore New Linux Apps Using These Safe Sites
Downloading anything from the Internet can be dangerous. So make sure to check a website’s reviews before downloading apps from it. For your convenience, above we have mentioned the safest and most reliable websites to download the best Linux apps.