Freeware (portmanteau of "free" and "software") is software that is available for use at no
monetary cost, but with one or more restricted usage rights such assource code being
withheld or redistribution prohibited. Freeware is in contrast to commercial software, which
is typically sold for profit, but might be distributed at no cost for a business or commercial
purpose in the aim to expand the marketshare of a "premium" product. According to
the Free Software Foundation, "freeware" is a loosely defined category and it has no clear
accepted definition, although FSF says it must be distinguished from free
software (libre). Well known examples of closed-source freeware include Adobe
Reader and Skype.
The term freeware was coined by Andrew Fluegelman when he wanted to sell in 1982 a
communications program named PC-Talk that he had created but for which he did not
wish to use traditional methods of distribution
because of their cost. Fluegelman actually
distributed PC-Talk via a process now referred to as shareware. Current use of the term
freeware does not necessarily match the original concept by Andrew Fluegelman.
The term freeware was used often in the 1980s and 1990s for programs released only
as executables, with source code not available.