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Overcoming open source misconceptions

Dirk-Peter van Leeuwen, senior vice president and general manager, Red Hat Asia Pacific | April 10, 2015
As open source has grown in popularity over recent years (both for private and commercial use), so has the number of misconceptions about open source and its use, particularly in enterprise environments.

This means having more than maintenance and a support contact. There are vendors today which allow customers to tap on the company's world-class engineering teams and the extended ecosystem of partners, other customers and the wider open source communities.

Said Jordan Robertson at Bloomberg BusinessWeek, "Open source software is actually an advantage for security researchers because you can have all kinds of researchers like the ones who found this bug tinkering away at research projects kind of in their spare time and finding holes in it. So it's actually a significant advantage to have open source software".

4.  Open source means lower quality
In addition to the security and support misconceptions, there are some who still believe that open source software and services are also of lesser quality. This could not be further from the truth as open source projects are often developed on a massive scale by leading engineers, commercial contributors and others. Traditional software business models are based on licenses, support and maintenance agreements. Such models only allows customers to call when something goes wrong, which is not ideal, especially for organizations running mission-critical applications. A truly collaborative support relationship should allow ongoing conversations between the customer and the entire support team, including those who are contributing to the code.

While open source misconceptions are certainly still present today, more organizations are seeing the value of open source technologies. There is no denying that these myths can be debunked through innovation and sharing ideas or solutions on how to overcome the misconceptions.


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