When you have lot of ideas flowing out of your mind it best that you capture it somewhere and a viable option would be using a mind mapping tool.

Installable Free Mind Mapping Tools

Below are the best three mind mapping tools that can be installed and used from your local machine itself.

XMind

XMind is one of the best mind map maker that comes packed with lot of useful features.

The installer file size is around 113 MB and is available for Mac OS X, Windows and Linux.

You can also download the portable version if you don’t want to install it.

XMind comes in 3 packages – the free version, XMind 6 Plus and XMind 6 Pro. The free version doesn’t have features like Export to PDF or Export to Office Applications like Word, PPT and Excel.

Evernote XMind mind map

Let us quickly see what other cool features that XMind has in store for you:

  • There are lots of professional templates available like Project Plan, SWOT Analysis, Weekly Plane, etc.
  • You can also find a template for your travel plan or create a blank new template and unleash your ideas.
  • You can insert inbuilt markers or images from your local system to make your mind maps more meaningful.
  • You can directly drag and drop files from your system onto the map.
  • You can export your XMind images easily to Evernote. You will have to provide authorization access in order to perform this operation.
  • You can export your mind maps into HTML and Image formats (PNG, BMP, JPEG and GIF)
  • There may be options in the Menu’s which will not be available in free version, if you want to hide them go to Preferences, XMind Pro and select the Hide Plus/Pro features checkbox.

Access Themes from the View Menu and make your mind maps standout if you are planning to present your ideas to someone.

Freemind

Free mind sample mind map

  • Freemind is available for Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, and a binary for any other operating system but JRE (Java Runtime Environment) needs to be present in your system.
  • If you are not planning to export your mind map into SVG or PDF then you can grab a smaller installer which is around 29 MB and the all feature inclusive tool size is around 38MB. I have downloaded the All-inclusive version.
  • The best part about Freemind is you can have multiple people working on the same map which really helps people who are more focused in Collaboration and are remotely located.
  • The restore session helps the user to stop worrying about closing the work abruptly as freemind loads all the maps that were closed inclusive of presenting the zoom level and the nodes that you had selected.
  • Location based mapping can be really helpful if you are planning to build a mind map around geographical topic. Planning for a holiday location? Freemind can help you right away.
  • Exporting options – You can export your mind map to PNG, JPEG, PDF and SVG.
  • You can also add notes to each nodes those notes can be in HTML code too.

Online Free Mind Mapping Tools

Use these online mind mapping tools to capture your ideas without having to install any software in your local system/ PC.

Mindmup

Online mind mapping tool

  • Mindmup is yet another clutter free online mind mapping tool that does a really good job.
  • Mindmind has a cool feature called measures that helps you to manage values like money, time and effort.
  • The real-time collaboration enables multiple people to work on a mind map and this feature is implemented through Google Drive Realtime API.
  • There is also an extension called progress that helps you to monitor tasks like software testing plans or projects. You can select this extension from the Extensions menu.
  • The tool may look simple but once you start using it, you can see the true potential of it.
  • You can export the mind map to PDF, PNG, PPT and word formats. They also have option to save the maps on to Google drive

Text 2 Mindmap

Mind map displaying months

  • Text 2 Mindmap is a free online based mind mapping tool that can be used for simple and rapid mind map generation without much complexity.
  • You can enter the text in the left pane and the blocks are automatically created for you. You can customize the colors and connecting line thickness and save them to desktop in either PDF or image format.
  • A Simple online mind mapping tool that can be used without any hassle.

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