Why Open Source matters

Open source doesn’t just mean access to the source code. It means that anyone should be able to modify the source code to suit his or her needs, and that no one should prevent others from doing the same.

Many people prefer open source software because they have more control over that kind of software. They can examine the code to make sure it’s not doing anything they don’t want it to do, and they can change parts of it they don’t like.

Free and open source software (FOSS) holds numerous compelling advantages for businesses, some of them even more valuable than the software’s low price.

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Soldecom has been using open source technologies since its foundation. We believe to the notion that “the more eyes on the source, the higher the quality”. This also has a great impact on security.

Users now view open software as more secure than proprietary software. In open source software, the source code is available for enhancement and modification by any person. Most of the computer users do not see the source code. The programmers can manipulate to change how a piece of software either an application or a program works. A program can be improved by the addition of features or fixing of the faults by programmers who have been granted access. The GNU General Public License, permit free distribution under the same license for its free usage.

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Primary benefits of open source software are:

Freedom – No vendor lock-down

When businesses turn to open source software, they free themselves from the severe vendor lock-in that can afflict users of proprietary packages. Customers of such vendors are at the mercy of the vendor’s vision, requirements, dictates, prices, priorities and timetable, and that limits what they can do with the products they’re paying for. With FOSS, on the other hand, users are in control to make their own decisions and to do what they want with the software. They also have a worldwide community of developers and users at their disposal for help with that.

Quality

Which is more likely to be better: a software package created by a handful of developers, or a software package created by thousands of developers? Just as there are countless developers and users working to improve the security of open source software, so are there just as many innovating new features and enhancements to those products. At least one recent study has shown, in fact, that technical superiority is typically the primary reason enterprises choose open source software.

Security

The continuous and broad peer-review enabled by publicly available source code improves security through the identification and elimination of defects that might otherwise be missed. The availability of source code also facilitates in-depth security reviews and audits by government customers.

Fast deployment

With open source software consumers needn’t wait years to deploy a solution. Open source software can be “test driven” prior to procurement, and is particularly suitable for inter-agency collaboration, rapid prototyping and experimentation. Both known and unanticipated users can be rapidly provisioned.

Choice

By its very nature, the source code of open source software is available to all, meaning that no one company owns the software. Any company can build upon open source software. It may be operated and maintained by multiple vendors, reducing both barriers to entry and exit.

Customizability

Along similar lines, business users can take a piece of open source software and tweak it to suit their needs. Since the code is open, it’s simply a matter of modifying it to add the functionality they want.

Cost

Between the purchase price of the software itself, the exorbitant cost of mandatory virus protection, support charges, ongoing upgrade expenses and the costs associated with being locked in, proprietary software takes more out of your business than you probably even realize. And for what? You can get better quality at a fraction of the price.

Support

Open-source software typically comes with the relevant fan-base, or developer community, that provides deep technical support to any problems that may occur by the usage of the specific software. The replies are almost immediate, and thus rapid patching is available to the end-users.

FOSS that Soldecom Uses

 

3Linux is built with a collaborative development model. The operating system and most of its software are created by volunteers and employees of companies, governments and organisations from all over the world, and the Linux kernel in general is considered to be performance-efficient and superior on security when compared with its competitors.

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Asterisk turns an ordinary computer into a communications server. Asterisk powers IP PBX systems, VoIP gateways, conference servers and is used by small businesses, large businesses, call centers, carriers and governments worldwide.

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As Git is a distributed version control system, it can be used as a server out of the box. Dedicated Git server software helps, amongst other features, to add access control, display the contents of a Git repository via the web, and help managing multiple repositories.

5MongoDB is an open source, document-oriented database designed with both scalability and developer agility in mind. Instead of storing your data in tables and rows as you would with a relational database, in MongoDByou store JSON-like documents with dynamic schemas

7WordPress is a free and open-source content management system (CMS) based on PHP and MySQL

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CFEngine is an IT infrastructure automation and Continuous Operations framework that helps engineers, system administrators and other stakeholders in an IT organization manage IT infrastructure while ensuring service levels and compliance. The CF-Engine software is deployed by some of the most important organizations globally, such as the US Navy and Deutsche Telekom.

9Redmine is a flexible project management web application. Written using the Ruby on Rails framework, it is cross-platform and cross-database. Redmine contains, amongst others, the following features:

  • Multiple projects support
  • Flexible role based access control
  • Flexible issue tracking system
  • Gantt chart and calendar
  • Issue creation via email
  • Multiple LDAP authentication support

 

10OpenVPN is an open-source VPN software solution, used for creating secure channels of communication to and from the Internet. OpenVPN can be considered the industry standard in VPN solutions, and offers increased security and features to its users.

11ownCloud is a file sharing server that puts the control and security of your own data back into your hands. The ownCloud personal cloud solution is being used by some of the largest institutions, such as Cern, DeLonghi, Deutsche Bahn, Jefferson National and various more.