Almost everything you buy in SL comes in boxes. One of the best tutorials I’ve found on unpacking them is on Shynee Jewell’s blog. When you’ve read that, come back here for an explanation of why you have to BUY things that are FREE.
Why Do I Have to Buy Free Stuff?
It’s quite simple, really: unless someone gives you something in SL, the only other way to obtain it is to buy it. But here’s the deal: if the vendor or seller has set the price at $L0 (zero Lindens), you won’t be charged anything when you “buy” it.
A few older vendors will charge you $L1, but will immediately refund it to you. And no, I have no idea why they do it that way. There are some things that man (or woman) was not destined to know.
And that, dear reader, is that. Opening boxes isn’t all that hard. Just remember that you have to be in an area where building is allowed, and to clean up after yourself. Some items will be copied to your inventory, in which case you can pick up the box and keep it in your inventory. Others will be transferred, leaving an empty box. In this case, you should delete the box.
Why Boxes, Anyway?
Think of boxes as SL’s version of ZIP, TAR, or similar compressed files. It’s an excellent way to keep files together.
Here’s an example:
It’s a box of clothing I purchased. In my inventory, it’s displayed as a simple box icon. But when I drag it to the ground, it becomes the cute truck the designer created for it. This is where I would right-click on it, wait for the menu to fill with the contents, and select “Copy to Inventory.” In this case, it’s a Copy rather than a Move, so I will then return the item to my inventory. If it had Moved the contents, I would then delete the empty box.
And here are the results of unpacking the box:
This particular item comes in 7 versions, each one suited to a particular avatar style. It also contains a link to the vendor’s store, in case I want to shop there again.
And that, dear friends, is pretty much all you need to know about boxes. Now go out and shop!