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On the Merits of the Open Source Model Sherif El-Kassas Department of Computer Science The American University in Cairo WIPO International Seminar on IP.

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Presentation on theme: "On the Merits of the Open Source Model Sherif El-Kassas Department of Computer Science The American University in Cairo WIPO International Seminar on IP."— Presentation transcript:

1 On the Merits of the Open Source Model Sherif El-Kassas Department of Computer Science The American University in Cairo WIPO International Seminar on IP and Development

2 Geneva, May 2-3, Outline Introduction Users perspective –Market share –Reliability –Performance –Security –Total cost of ownership Developer and Firm perspective –Work models –Strategic motivations

3 Geneva, May 2-3, Introduction Open Source Initiative: software is considered open source if its distribution terms adhere to: 1.Free redistribution; 2.The distribution must include the source code, and allow distribution in source code as well as compiled form; 3.Derived Works: The license must allow modifications and derived works; 4.Integrity of The Source Code; 5.No Discrimination Against Persons or Groups; 6.No Discrimination Against Fields of Endeavor; 7.Distribution of License; 8.License Must Not Be Specific to a Product; 9.License Must Not Restrict Other Software; and 10.License Must Be Technology-Neutral.

4 Geneva, May 2-3, Basics of Open Source Software Markets and Business Models, Examples of Open Source Licenses

5 Geneva, May 2-3, Software Examples Operating systems: Linux, FreeBSD Specialized servers: Apache, Sendmail, Samba, OpenLDAP Tools: GCC, Perl, PHP, XML processors Office: OpenOffice, StarOffice, Middlewares: JONAS DBMS: MySQL, PostgreSQL Graphics: GIMP Security: Nessus, nmap, Snort, GPG, OpenSSL, OpenSSH

6 Geneva, May 2-3, Outline Users perspective –Market share –Reliability –Performance –Security –Total cost of ownership

7 Geneva, May 2-3, Market Share Market share or whether a product is main stream is an important decision making criteria mainstream more likely it is to find: –trained staff –product related resources –reduces associated risks –…

8 Geneva, May 2-3,

9 Geneva, May 2-3,

10 Geneva, May 2-3, Reliability Reliability is an important criterion when selecting mission critical software There is some evidence that suggests that open source software offers better reliability It maybe attributed to the development model of open source software

11 Geneva, May 2-3, Failure Rates as Measured by Fuzz Tests

12 Geneva, May 2-3, Performance Performance tests are often controversial due to the many factors and assumptions that affect the results This often results in conflicting results and conclusions There have been successes for both open and closed source software

13 Geneva, May 2-3, Security The fact that a program is open source does not make it automatically more secure Public security is always more secure than proprietary security. It's true for cryptographic algorithms, security protocols, and security source code. […] open source isn't just a business model; it's smart engineering practice ---Bruce Schneier, Crypto-Gram Newsletter, September1999

14 Geneva, May 2-3, Total Cost of Ownership Important measure and decision making tool Dependant on needs & environment There have been numerous studies with mixed and conflicting results Some important cases show that open source software has resulted in significant cost reduction every user considering open source solutions should conduct their own TCO study […] the long run total cost of operations (TCO) for a suite of proprietary software must necessarily be greater than that for an equivalent suite of free software […]. --- Brendan Scott, html

15 Geneva, May 2-3, Outline Developer and Firm perspective –Work models –Strategic motivations

16 Geneva, May 2-3, Work Models The distributors The software producers Service providers

17 Geneva, May 2-3, Distributors Firms that provide access to source code and open software products May sell CDs and customized versions of their products offering various update and support services to enterprise clients

18 Geneva, May 2-3,

19 Geneva, May 2-3, The Software Producer Model GPL vs. Non-GPL

20 Geneva, May 2-3,

21 Geneva, May 2-3,

22 Geneva, May 2-3, Service Providers Depends on selling support and upgrade services Very important as a complement for the other work models The sale of open source software alone may not be enough to sustain a firm

23 Geneva, May 2-3,

24 Geneva, May 2-3, Strategic motivations some firm have used open source to influence their standing in other areas of the software and IT business Example: –SAP releasing is SAP DB database product as open source enables it to reduce the over all price of its Enterprise Resource Planning application may enable it to compete more effectively. –IBM may benefit from open source models to provide unified access to its diverse hardware platform which may lead to increased hardware sales.

25 Geneva, May 2-3, Conclusions The open source model has established itself as an important and successful alternative to proprietary development models Users should consider open source platforms when making IT related decisions It may not be always possible to rely entirely on open source software –E.g., due to: availability, compatibility with existing closed systems, or legal requirements Open source software seems to lowers the entry bar it makes sense to consider basing local development efforts on a suitable open source model

26 Geneva, May 2-3, Questions? Links:

27 Geneva, May 2-3, europa/ue/2001/ida/OSS_Fact_sheet-market_structure.pdf

28 Geneva, May 2-3, IT Vendors

29 Geneva, May 2-3, HW/SW vendors supporting Linux IBM –Linux on Intel servers, mid-range AS/400 (iSeries) and mainframes –should unify IBM heterogeneous platforms HP –Linux in addition to HP-UX and Windows –develop on Linux, deploy on Linux, Windows and HP-UX Papiers/Valduriez.PDF

30 Geneva, May 2-3, SW vendors Netscape to manage development NPL = compromise GPL/BSD sale server software, services and content (with AOL) Oracle –commitment to Linux –high-value proprietary software Papiers/Valduriez.PDF

31 Geneva, May 2-3, Service vendors Linux distributors –RedHat, Caldera, SuSe, Conectiva, TurboLinux, MandrakeSoft, etc –Sale customer support – to unify the various distributions Application Service Providers –ASP1 –OSS and proprietary software as service Papiers/Valduriez.PDF

32 Geneva, May 2-3, Is it a Paradigm Shift?

33 Geneva, May 2-3, Mainframes Client/ Server WebTech P Zero OO Open Source Wireless ?

34 Geneva, May 2-3, As the rule goes, when a paradigm shift occurs, everyone goes back to zero, which brings people back onto a level playing field or the same starting block. me=aprilnewsletter

35 Geneva, May 2-3, Conclusions Is it a paradigm shift? It will not totally replace what we know But we can benefit from it greatly in: –CS and IT education –Research –IT security Others are building a new software (and copyright industry) based on new principals!

36 Geneva, May 2-3, Questions? Links:

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