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Developers know that open source is great. Even Microsoft is now on the open-source bandwagon. But, outside of the IT department, many companies don't understand why and how open source can help their businesses. The Linux Foundation has the answers you need in its new free Open Source Software Basics ebook.

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"Organizations have begun to realize that as they adopt more open-source software, they need to establish processes for everything from selecting software -- to deploying it, to ensuring license compliance," said Linux Foundation executive director Jim Zemlin at the Open Source Leadership Summit in Lake Tahoe, Calif. "The benefits of adopting and contributing back to open source are immense, but more education is required to fully realize those advantages."

Topics in this free publication include:

  • What is Open Source Software (OSS)?
  • Why do companies use OSS?
  • Why is OSS faster, lower cost, and more flexible?
  • Operational challenges to using OSS
  • OSS licenses

This book helps business executives, the legal team, software architects, software developers, software maintainers, and product managers understand open source's key aspects. It's based on content from the LFC210 - Fundamentals of Professional Open Source Management training course.

Here's the kind of information you'll find in the book.

There are many compelling reasons for using open source:

● Many organizations use open source to speed up the delivery of software and hardware solutions. It gives them quick access to industry leading software, simple deployment, and ease of customization.

● In other organizations, cost savings are the most important factor: Open source can be much less expensive to acquire than commercially licensed software or in-house developed software. These cost savings start with acquisition, but extend to deployment, support, and maintenance.

● Some organizations choose open source for its flexibility. When you have the source code, you can make whatever modifications you need to, and open-source's licensing flexibility allows changes to the code and changes to deployment strategies.

● In many arenas, the leading edge of development comes from open-source communities -- this is the case, for example, with internet and networking protocols; it's true for mobile operating systems such as Android, content management systems (CMS), WordPress, and scientific computing. A company that wants to participate in these arenas, must participate in open source.

To many of you, this is old news. But, if your company is still unclear on what open source is and how it can help your company, this ebook is an easy, painless way to get your people up to speed on it.

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  • Why Microsoft is turning into an open-source company
  • Nothing good is free: How Linux and open source companies make money
  • Want a good tech job? Report says open-source skills are hotter than ever

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