Open Source for the Enterprise by Dan Woods

By Dan Woods

Open resource software program is altering the area of knowledge expertise. yet making it paintings to your corporation is way extra complex than just fitting a duplicate of Linux. while you are enthusiastic about utilizing open resource to chop bills, speed up improvement, and decrease seller lock-in, you need to institutionalize talents and create new methods of operating. you want to know the way open resource isn't like advertisement software program and what duties and hazards it brings. Open resource for the firm is a considerate advisor to placing open resource to paintings within the sleek IT department.Open resource software program is software program whose code is freely to be had to a person who desires to swap and redistribute it. New advertisement help prone, smaller licensing charges, elevated collaboration, and a friendlier platform to promote services and products are only a number of the purposes open resource is so appealing to IT departments. a few of the open resource tasks which are in present, common use in companies huge and small contain Linux, FreeBSD, Apache, MySQL, PostgreSQL, JBoss, and Perl. Open resource has entered a brand new region the place it truly is getting used as a advertising and marketing gadget, a collaborative software program improvement method, and a enterprise model.This publication presents anything way more helpful than both the cheerleading or the fear-mongering one frequently hears approximately open resource. The authors are Dan Woods, former CTO of TheStreet.com and a expert and writer of a number of books approximately IT, and Gautam Guliani, Director of software program structure at Kaplan try out Prep & Admissions. each one writer has used open resource software program for a few 15 years at IT departments huge and small. they've got amassed the knowledge of a number of specialists from IT departments, open resource groups, and software program businesses. Open resource for the company presents a most sensible to backside view not just of open resource expertise, yet of the abilities required to regulate it and the organizational concerns that has to be addresse

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In contrast to commercial software, open source code is just that: open to direct inspection at the source-code level by anyone and everyone, including potential users, developers, competing development teams, and yes, even nefarious hackers. Few people have the knowledge or time, however, to evaluate the software's quality fully, by inspecting its source code line by line, module by module. But it is possible to glean some meaningful insight into the thinking that has shaped the codeinto the mind or minds that have produced what you see.

The Elements of Open Source Maturity As mentioned previously, the elements of open source maturity are direct indicators of the potential difficulties you can encounter when using open source. The specific elements of open source maturity we will discuss are: • Leadership and culture • Vitality of community • Quality of end-user support • Extent and scope of documentation • Quality of packaging • Momentum • Quality of code and design • Quality of architecture • Testing practices • Integration with other products • Support for standards • Quality of project site • License type • Potential for commercial conflicts • Corporate commitment Each of these strengths is directly related to the difficulty an IT department will encounter when using the software.

The pitfalls outlined in this section occur because of overconfidence on the part of technologists, lack of due diligence, and poor communication. Getting burned while selecting open source is usually the result of mistakes made in one of these broad categories: • It requires more work than expected. • It does not work well with existing systems. • It is harder to extend than anticipated. • Getting answers from the open source development team is impossible. The good news is that most of the time it is easy to determine in advance whether these problems are likely to occur.

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