Originally Posted by steelfan
Does it make any difference if the Maxsea is genuine or a copy ?
Don't take me wrong. I do think that piracy is the thing going on at Somalia, not at file sharing servers. And I could cite you at least ten reasons for not paying fpr software at all. But if you are reluctant to pay (for whatever reasons), why not use a software which does not impose such restrictions? In this way (even by just using it and telling others what you are doing, even better by reporting bugs back) you are contributing to a better world.
I would recommend to try out OpenCPN
It can work with GPS and AIS, do anchor drag and collision alert, and all the usual chart plotting/navigation functionalities there.
You can download US coastal maps useable with it for free from the NOAA website,
It knows the usual map formats, so you can use most of the maps you can get.
One notable shortcoming is that it cannot read NOAA's RNC format, so for maps covering the rest of the world you should rely on other sources, like commercial maps or file sharing. (I would be pleased to see some bounty offered to the developer to address the issue.)
I am in no way associated to opencpn other than using it and believing in free software.