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Depending on which you prefer, there are different formats and ways to obtain the tax software you are interested in.
CD-ROM. Many tax software programs are offered in CD format. Before buying this variety, however, be certain your computer system has a CD drive. (Most do nowadays). This is a common sense comment, but many a person has an older computer system and has bought a tax software program in CD-ROM format only to sit at their computer and sigh.
Download. Some tax software providers allow you to go online to their website and download their tax software. Many times there is a charge for this. The benefit to this choice, however, is the convenience. You do not have to run out to a store and purchase the software off the shelf. You can simply sit in front of your computer, go online, and download it.
Online. You can go online to a website that offers the tax software you are interested in. In many cases you can simply use the tax software without downloading it to your computer. The IRS Free File service providers offer a perfect example of this. You have access to tax software through the service providers own tax software to prepare, file, and submit your taxes without you actually buying the software.
When you obtain your tax software program in CD-ROM, or need to download it yourself, be certain you have good instructions for the tax software. When you go online and use software, be sure there is a ‘help' section.