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Shareware is software that is distributed without the tight controls that are often seen for propietary software. The licensing for this software normally asks for payment though. Freeware and shareware are alike in that they can be obtained and used without monetary cost. Shareware differs from freeware, however, in that requests of voluntary "shareware fees" are asked, often as part of the program itself (this feature will lead the program to be called nagware?); sometimes, paying the fee and obtaining a password will result in access to expanded features, documentation, or support. In some cases, unpaid use of the software is limited in time--in which case the software is vernacularly called crippleware.

When did shareware first appear? What is the market for shareware, and on what platforms? What types of applications have been successfully released as shareware?