This article contains a list of best free knowledge base software for Windows. These software can be used by small or medium sized companies to create, store, and organize a knowledge database with structured and unstructured information. Most of these are mind mapping software which let you create mind maps to store information. You can add nodes as topic, subtopic, important, question, idea, website, quotation, definition, description, etc. These let you upload documents and images to store in your knowledge database. In one of these, you can create FAQ records in your knowledge database. Also, one of these lets you add articles to your knowledge database to create a helpdesk.
You can upload your knowledge database to web or export it to multiple file formats. The supported file formats vary one knowledge base software to another. Some of these are ADOC, HTML, Latex document, PNG, JPEG, PDF, SVG, TWiki, Java Applet, etc.
A few of these are web based knowledge base software. Hence, you will require a web server (e.g. XAMPP) to run those software.
My Favorite Knowledge Base Software For Windows:
FreeMind is one of my favorite knowledge base software because it lets you create a knowledge database using mind maps and also supports a lot of file formats to export mind maps. InfoRapid KnowledgeBase Builder is also great as it lets you build 3D mind maps to create and organize your knowledge database.
You may also like some best free Database Schema Designer Software, Concept Mapping Software, and Data Mining Software for Windows.
FreeMind is a mind map based knowledge base software for Windows, Linux, and Mac. You can create mind maps with several interconnected knowledge items. The knowledge items may be of different types such as text, images, hyperlinks (link, file, text field), graphical link, etc. It lets you create multiple mind maps in different tabs simultaneously.
Here you can create full encrypted mind map or a mind map with individual encrypted nodes. To create a mind map, you can simply add nodes, child nodes, and sibling nodes as floating node, topic, subtopic, important, question, idea, website, quotation, definition, description, etc. Based on node type, you can assign a node icon too from its library. It lets you add text content and table to a node in a separate dialog box. You can also see the layout view and HTML code view for the same. You will get a lot of customization options to stylize node appearance, such as node color, node background color, node edge color, node edge style, node edge width, make a node blinking, etc. Easy navigation, view, presentation mode, etc. options can be found in this software. It also provides some additional tools including Join Nodes, Split Node, Assign Attributes, Attribute Manager, Share Map, Join Map, etc.
Coming to the number of formats it lets you export your mind maps to, it supports quite a lot. These include HTML, OpenOffice Writer document, PNG, JPEG, PDF, SVG, TWiki, Java Applet, etc. These file formats can be used to save your mind map knowledge database.
Overall, it is one of the best and easiest to use knowledge base software in this list.
Note: It requires Java to be installed on your system to run.
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InfoRapid KnowledgeBase Builder
InfoRapid KnowledgeBase Builder is a free knowledge base software for Windows. Using it, you can create and organize your knowledge database in the form of 3D mind maps. Your knowledge items are saved in a local SQLite database. It also lets you upload knowledge database to web anonymously. For this, database is encrypted through a secure https connection and the maximum database size can be 500MB. You can also upload individual items as CSV or image file.
The mind map can be created by adding knowledge items with name, description, hyperlink, images, notes, etc. You can add independent items or related items to your knowledge base. It also lets you import CSV, MediaWiki XML Database Dump, Resource Description Framework (RDF), Web Ontology Language, XML, XML Metadata Interchange (XMI), XML Schema Definition, and Gedcom File for Family Tree files. Additionally, it lets you import any type of files to archives and you can also import web pages into your knowledge base. You can manage relations, items, properties, and archives from respective tab present in the right panel. The mind map diagram can be customized by using formatting options like text color, shape, symbol, background color, background pattern, shadow, highlight labels, etc. You can easily navigate in the diagram, adjust view, search items in a category, switch presentation mode on, etc.
Some additional tools are provided in it which include:
- Monitor Clipboard: To monitor documents and images copied from Windows Explorer to clipboard and add them to archives.
- Generate Site Map: To create a graphical site map.
It is another nice and interactive knowledge base software.
Note: This software is free for non-commercial use only.
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Freeplane is another free mind mapping and knowledge base software. It also lets you create informative mind maps with key knowledge items. You can add nodes and child nodes as topic, subtopic, important, floating nodes, root, attributes, etc. It lets you add content to your mind maps such as text, scientific formula, calculation, icon, images, hyperlinks, etc. The mind map is customizable using multiple formatting options which include apply style, automatic layout, map background, node core, edge properties, etc. It lets you encrypt individual nodes of a mind map or the entire mind map.
Approximate Search is supported which lets you search for text even without exact match. It also provides navigation and filter options. In the Tools menu, you get some handy tools like Manage Time, Manage Task, Install Addons, Execute Scripts, Assign Hotkeys, etc. You can view map statistics including number of nodes, leaf nodes, main branches, etc.
To export, it supports ADOC, HTML, Latex document, PDF, JPEG, PNG, JNLP, TWiki, Mediawiki, XML, XLS, OPML, etc. formats.
Overall, it is another good free open source knowledge base software.
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HESK is a web-based knowledge base software for Windows. In it, you can basically create and organize helpdesk knowledge database. It is suitable for small sized businesses to resolve customer queries. It lets you add and manage users. It also lets you send and receive private messages to/from added users.
It provides a dedicated Knowledgebase menu to create helpdesk. Here you can add categories and then add public or private articles to build a knowledge database. Standard formatting options to format your article are also present in it, such as subscript, superscript, list, bullets, highlight, font formatting, etc. It also lets you insert images to your articles using URLs. You can add keywords to your articles and make an article Sticky. You can add canned responses, custom data fields, etc., to your database. It lets you assign tickets and track time spent working on a ticket.
It lets you view reports too. Some tools like Ban Emails, Ban IPs, Service messages, Email Templates, Statuses, etc., can be found in it.
Note: It requires web server like XAMPP to run.
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phpMyFAQ is another free web-based knowledge base software. It also requires a web server (like XAMPP) to run.
As the name suggests, you can prepare a FAQ database using this freeware. The FAQ can be added by entering name, email, category, question, answer, keywords, and link to FAQ. Other than that, you can add attachments, comments, glossary items, etc., to your database. An Advanced Search option is also provided in it.
Features of this knowledge base software:
- It lets you create and manage multiple users such as assigning permissions, creating groups, making categories, etc.
- It lets you secure your FAQ database using HTTP authentication or OpenLDAP based user management.
- You can view ratings statistic, view sessions, search statistics, and generate and export report (as CSV) with category, question, date, URL, visits, etc.
- You can export FAQ database as JSON, PDF, XML, and XHTML files.
- It lets you share your content on Facebook, Twitter, etc.
- Database backup and restore options are also provided.
- It also lets you configure various software related settings.
phpMyFAQ is also an open source knowledge base software. Home Page Download Page
Goozzee is the next free open source knowledge base software for Windows. It lets you organize and manage your knowledge database using topic maps. You can add topics with scope, role (class, see also, lower, upper, instance, etc.), etc. It provides a WYSIWYG text editor to add text, images, symbols, tables, and web pages. You can find various formatting options like font, bullets and numbering, paragraph spacing, alignment, etc. You can upload any type of document to your knowledge database.
It also lets you import and export XTM files.
Note: It comes in two versions: Personal Edition (for a single user) and Network Edition (for multiple users). Home Page Download Page