February 6, 2009

Enterprise Enlightenment!

Computers and ITES (Information Communication Technology Enabled Services) are essential for every enterprise, no matter how big or small it is. Few years ago the only choice for IT infrastructure was to either run legitimate versions of proprietary software or use the pirated versions. But now Linux and other open source software are slowly dominating the business world, with their low cost high quality products. A recent survey revealed more than 50% of the web servers are using open source solutions such as Apache and MySql.

How Open Source Works ?

Open Source Softwares are softwares maintained by community developers (millions of them spread across the globe) rather than by a company, the source code of the Software will be openly shared, so that any one who is interested can develop, customize or enhance the software.

Read the Open Source Definition

Why Open Source ?

Open Source applications are evolved into powerful and quality products that can run on already existing hardware.

Other features include :

  • Low Requirements - open source applications require low memory and processing power (exceptions prevail) than the alternative applications need to provide similar performance.

  • Customizable - they are highly customizable. So that the user can create custom softwares based on the open source software to keep up with his standards or requirements.

  • Stability - compared to other proprietary alternatives, open source technologies are stable and less error-prone.

  • Secure - open source softwares are secure compared to its proprietary competitors.

  • Support - with strong online communities and forums, open source technologies are naturally the best supported software.

  • Low Cost - open source technologies helps us to setup infrastructures for almost free of cost.

How Open Source can help Business ?

As the recession put pressure on companies who are spending money on software infrastructures, which needs to be replaced soon within a few years time. This is where the freely available, high quality open source solutions lends a helping hand.There is a rich number of open source applications are available today for Web Servers, Databases, Content Management, Security, Development tools, etc. Open Source also helps to reduce maintenance cost and upgrading charges.Usually the softwares will be replaced or upgraded in recent years in almost all software infrastructures.

  • If you are planning any software purchase, you might check if there is any open source alternative available.In most of the cases Proprietary companies provide limited functionality software for low cost and later when you realize that you need more functionalities, you need to pay more for it. If there is an open source alternative is available, it will be almost free of charge, even if the software is a subscription based one it will cost only very less compared to the proprietary alternative.

  • If you are looking at operating costs, open source offers the least expensive computing environment for small business. In such cases open source also offers more scalability and efficiency at low setup and maintenance cost.

  • Open Source solutions can also help organizations to develop custom applications based on the existing Open Source applications. This provides more flexibility for organizations.

  • Companies can reduce licensing fee required to pay for the proprietary technologies. Most likely these technologies will be replaced with newer versions in short period of times, which requires purchase of license again.
There are a million ways open source technologies can help your business grow, we'll discuss some of them in this blog later.

Subscription based Open Source Softwares

There are subscription based Open Source Softwares, usually they are of very low rate compared to it's proprietary competitors. Red Hat is one of the biggest commercial open source company with revenue exceeding $500 million.

Difficulties in using Open Source Software

However, working with open source software comes with a lot more hardships than working with proprietary software. Companies that aren't working with commercial open source vendors or consultants will have to face a lot of hurdles on the way than they may be used to. But still there are lots of communities local and global available to help people who makes use of open source software, so no need to worry.

Read More Success stories

Keep coming back to this blog. I'll update it with some how-to articles and other articles to help you in your transformation to Open Source Technologies.

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