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Template:Avoid nonfree software

For system security it is strongly advised to not install proprietary, non-free software. Instead, use of free software is recommended. As free software pioneer Richard Stallman puts it:

  • "[...] If you run a nonfree program on your computer, it denies your freedom; the main one harmed is you. [...]"
  • "Every nonfree program has a lord, a master -- and if you use the program, he is your master.“
  • "To have the choice between proprietary software packages, is being able to choose your master. Freedom means not having a master. And in the area of computing, freedom means not using proprietary software."


Open Source software like Linux is more secure than closed source software. The public scrutiny of security by design has proven to be superior to security through obscurity. This aligns the software development process with Kerckhoffs' principle - the basis of modern cipher-systems design. This principle asserts that systems must be secure, even if the adversary knows everything about how they work. Generally speaking, Libre Software projects are much more open and respectful of the privacy rights of users. Libre Software projects also encourage security bug reports, open discussion, public fixes and review.

For more information on installing free, third-party Libre software consult the Install_Software#Foreign_Sources page for advice. See also: Is It Ever a Good Thing to Use a Nonfree Program?

Related: Why will Whonix always be Free as in Freedom, Free as in Price?