Best free chess programs and utilities

Arena Chess Interface will help you analyze and play games, or even test chess engines. It is compatible with the Winboard protocol I, II and the UCI protocol I, II. Furthermore, compatible to Chess960, DGT electronic chess board & DGT clock XP, Novag Citrine, Autoplayer, ICS (chess servers) and much more.

AlphaChess is a free chess program that will let you play with a friend or against the computer. Three play modes are available: a local game by using the same keyboard with a friend, online game by connecting to a dedicated server, or playing against the computer.

Penguin is a free desktop chess board and game editor for analysis and review of Chess games. The objective of the author was to create a compact non-commercial product that could stand alongside the existing editors for Chess and offer some original functionality.

Chess Position Trainer will help you improve your chess opening moves in an intuitive and customizable user-interface, accompanied by a detailed manual. Features: Import or enter your chess opening repertoire and manage it with ease; Use more than 70 training options just for the chess opening; Use the applied flash-card concept making chess training more efficient and fun; Train your own repertoire blindfolded; Use special functions like running your (internet) chess games against your repertoire, backsolving and other sophisticated features.

NagaSkaki features many types of boards and pieces, along with other parameters that allow a sufficient degree of customization. You can play against the computer or a human opponent – but not over a lan or the internet. Features: save and load games, paste position from clipboard, undo moves, stop computer from thinking a move, clocks, sounds, hash table, opening book,  ponder, Levels: Seconds/Move, Blitz, Tournament and different Personalities, Load/Save pgn files, Shows best move and evaluation of position, Display captured Pieces, Display possible moves. NagaSkaki can run under its own GUI or in Winboard.

* Check also this list with the best free educational and mind exercising games