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I see a Lot of people still using closed source software and paying money for software you can get free. These open source tools are great replacement for their commercial counterparts.
Most of these tools will run on windows,mac,or linux.

OpenOffice:

In my opinion, one of the best pieces of open source software out there. A great word processor with everything you would expect(spell check, etc)
The spreadsheets, presentations, etc are all equally impressive.

Linux

My OS of choice. Debian packages are sometimes a little stale, and ubuntu is sometimes full of bloat, but LMDE is great and very easy to use coming from windows. Unless you are going to play a lot of computer games, linux is way better and more stable, and even makes 10 year old computers perfectly good web browsing and email machines.

GIMP:

If you can't afford Photoshop(or just prefer open source), This is the next best thing. The interface is a little different(not much) but the features are there.

Mozilla FireFox and Google Chromium

Both about equally good IMHO. I like firefox a bit better and don't use chrome anymore really. I like the firefox UI and bookmarks bar better. I haven't tried chrome in a while so it might have gotten better. Chrome is not open, but Chromium is.

Audacity

No matter if you're recording a quick note,a new song, nature sounds, or whatever, Audacity is great. A very usable audio recorder and editor. Don't try to use it as a full DAW, it isn't.
However for most tasks, it will do.

7-Zip

An excellent free ZIP program. also does its own 7z format, which has better compression and good encryption(But only if your passphrase is secure). It also decodes and encodes most other formats.

Eclipse

My IDE of choice for anything python or html. It doesn't have indent guides by default that I know of, but a plugin fixes that.

Kate

KDE's native editor/IDE. I tried GitHub's new Atom, but it just doesn't seem as polished. The file browser sidebar doesn't seem to have a one level up option. It seems to take awhile to load wheras Kate loads almost instantly. Kate also lets you choose your fonts and colors easily. Plus, I normally use KDE as my desktop anyway.

Code::Blocks

A decent C/C++ IDE. Haven't tried many others.