i have heard linux software are freeware and there are million of them out there. Would everyone please share their favorite download sites? I don't find that easy to locate the linux softwares... please share both the sites for downloading package and binary.

thanks a lot

what distro of linux are you running?

If ubuntu, many packages are available through synaptic

Well first lets start with the Operating Systems, there are a ton of free operating systems (better known as linux dstributions) based on Linux, Here are a few popular ones:-

Debian A popular free linux distro.
Ubuntu These guys actually ship Ubuntu CDs directly to your home without any charge whatsoever. Also it is one of the most popular Linux distributions available with excellent support. Ubuntu is based on Debian.
OpenSuse OpenSuse was developed by the Suse group initially now acquired by Novell. OpenSuse has the best desktop, in all the linux distros I have ever seen and is the OS I am using while writing this.
Slackware This is the oldest surviving distibution of linux, but this recommended for experts as you will have mostly hand edit configuration files in this distribution.
Gentoo Gentoo is also a nice operating system with a mature desktop environment. It also based on Debian.
Fedora This based on Red Hat Linux, in fact it is supposed to be the testing distro for features that will be later incorporated in to the Red Hat Enterprise Linux OS which is a free software but not free of charge. Fedora is an RPM based distribution.
Mandriva Mandriva was the first distribution that got me hooked on Linux, before I had tried Red Hat Linux 9, but later was disappointed with it and had gone back to Windows, it was Mandriva that got me back to Linux and kept me there while I learned and progressed from being a naive linux user to a power user. Mandriva has got a great desktop OS, comes in built with all the mp3 codecs etc so you don,t have to manually install them. It is an RPM based distro and was originally forked from Red Hat Linux.
CentOS CentOS is based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux ans is mainly targetted at servers where long support (updates etc) for a certain version of your OS is something that matters a lot.
Red Hat Enterprise Linux: As the name suggests it is targetted at servers and has the same objectives as CentOS (in fact its vice versa as CentOS is derived from Red Hat Enterprise Linux)

After you select your distribution we can recommend softwares repositories for you cause a repository which works for one will definitely not work for others.

most software can be found through the repositories

>>what distro of linux are you running?
i am running fedora 9. where should i go to check for the repositories? thanks thanks