Oct 17, 2018

Advantages and Disadvantages of Open Source

Advantages of Open Source

Open-source software offers several benefits that you may be able to take advantage of. Of course, these are only advantages if you have the resources to exploit them.

Free or Low-Cost
Most open-source applications are available to you at no cost. Some developers offer higher levels of support with a paid fee, but the basic code is yours for nothing. If you have the time and the talent to modify the code for your needs, you can save a lot on licensing fees.

Customizable
Open-source code is meant to be torn apart, tinkered with, and rebuilt. Your team can take the source code and turn it into whatever you need it to be. If you know exactly what you’re looking for, and don’t want a lot of extraneous parts, then open-source applications may be for you.

No Commitment
Commercial application vendors typically require a licensing commitment of at least a few months. This could leave you paying for a system that you don’t like or don’t use. With open-source applications, there are not time commitments. You can use it for as long as you like, and quit using it without any fear of penalties.

Disadvantages of Open Source

Every system is going to have its limitations. Open-source software has limitations that are particular to its underlying design philosophy.

Limited Support
Open-source application vendors don’t offer much support for their free versions. While there are some options for paid support, you might as well buy the application if you’re going to go that route. With open-source, most of your support is going to come from developer forums that might not respond quickly or accurately.

Fewer Functions
If you’re looking for all of the bells and whistles, open-source software may not be your best bet. A lot of the development is conducted by people during their spare time.