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I have no options for using PowerPrep

Dear GRE PowerPrep Tech Support:

I want to inform you that, because your software is proprietary and because it is only made for the Microsoft Windows operating system, I am completely unable to use it. I hope that you will take the technical steps necessary to make the software available on other platforms, and release the source code under a free software license, such as the GNU GPL.

I have tried to run the software in a variety of ways: I first tried to use it at home, using the WINE Windows compatibility layer for POSIX systems, without success. I also tried to use a Windows machine at my library, but I cannot use it on that computer either, because I do not have the administrative privileges required to install the software. I do not have access to another machine which runs Microsoft Windows. The PowerPrep software is therefore completely unusable to me.

I feel that this puts me at an unfair disadvantage as I prepare to take the GRE, and I am sure there are others who are similarly disenfranchised. I hope that ETS views this as a problem and will take steps to remedy it. The best way to make sure that everyone has an equal opportunity to use your software to prepare for the GRE is to release the source code and compiled packages for a variety of platforms. You won’t lose any money, since no one is paying for the software except by paying to register for the test, which they will continue to do; and you’ll be ensuring fair access to your software and services to everyone, regardless of their choice of computing platform.

I hope you will consider this issue as you make revisions and prepare future releases of the PowerPrep software.


Written by whereofwecannotspeak

October 9, 2008 at 8:07 pm

Posted in Free Software

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