Jump to content

Open Source or Closed Source - What to choose?


Recommended Posts

Hello folks,


The little understanding I have about the two types of software is: closed source is any software product to which a normal end user has no view into the source code of the product.


Open source software is any piece of software where a normal end user is granted a full view into the source code and has the option to modify this code for his or her own purpose.


Closed source software


The biggest downside of closed source software is that you have no idea how it was made. You must accept the word of a software vendor for the quality of their own product.


Open source software


The biggest downside of open source software is all the clueless fanatics supporting the cause. The upside is, if you have the skill and time, you have an excellent view into each and every aspect of how the application works.


Any suggestions?


Thanks, James!

Edited by Andrea
Link Deleted - No Spam Please
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks Andrea for the prompt response!but honestly wikipedia is too vast...I was looking for something that can help me decide fast.In the meantime I came across something useful while surfing (googling actually) and it sounds pretty convincing too....I am sharing the same:


Both open source and closed source software are far from perfect. If you are new to computers then closed source software is probably for you, as the cost of training and getting yourself competent will exceed getting the cost of buying easier to use software. The support offered by closed source companies tends to be better than its open source competitors. There are companies that offer paid support for open source software.


On the other hand, open source software is catching up quickly with its closed source counterparts. Some versions or distributions of Linux can be installed completely without having to touch a keyboard and projects are currently running to improve the documentation available for open source software. Also as overall computer literacy improves as computers become more pervasive, open source software will become more appealing.


The abilities and friendliness of open and closed source software are merging, and the real showdown will happen in five to ten years when the only real difference between the two classes will be the cost.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

And when you Google "The abilities and friendliness of open and closed source software are merging, and the real showdown will happen in five to ten years when the only real difference between the two classes will be the cost. " you'll find an article dated 2004 - which puts us smack in the latter part of that 'showdown"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Most closed source programs do not restrict developers from altering the code to fit a client's need. So regardless if you use open or closed source you should be able to modify the source codes yourself so long as you have the knowledge to do so.


Whatever you choose be sure to read the license/copyright for each one because not all are the same.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I always try to go with open source software (commercial or otherwise) simply because I want the flexibility that being able to access the source code provides.


Also, I find that open source projects are kept up-to-date more consistently since the user base can offer fixes. You just need to explore each project to be sure the code base is clean and well managed.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Open source software can be defined as software distributed under a licensing

agreement which allows the source code (computer code) to be shared,

viewed and modified by other users and organisations.Closed source software can be defined as proprietary software distributed under a licensing agreement to authorized users with private modification,

copying and republishing restrictions.Open source software is free. This is a huge draw card, and if your in-house

capabilities are such that you are able to implement, train and support at little

cost to your organization it may be an attractive option but The cost of proprietary software will vary from a few thousand to a few hundred thousand dollars, depending on the complexity of the system required. This cost is made up of a base fee for software, integration and services and annual licensing/support fees.Open source software is often viewed as having security issues. New data from Forrester Research has shown that 58% of IT Executives and technology decision makers in large companies are concerned about the security of open source software. On the other hand Proprietary software is viewed as more secure because it is developed in a controlled environment by a concentrated team with a common direction. Moreover, the source code may be viewed and edited by this team alone, and is heavily audited, eliminating the risk of back door Trojans and reducing the

risk of any bugs or issues with the software.

At last i just want to say that When deciding between open source or closed source (proprietary) software, it is critical to first consider the organization’s business internal (resources and capabilities) and external (stable or evolving) environment, and the level ofrisk the organization is willing to take. The aforementioned issues can then be used as a guide to make an informed decision between the two.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The easiest way to put this I think, is for you to decide what fits your persona. Do you like solving puzzles, real brain teasers and get a rush from it? If you do, open source is the way to go. If you are completely indifferent to puzzles and just want to handle the task at hand, proprietary software is the way to go. As far as security is concern, that is completely up to you and the sites you frequent on the web. Be mindful of the fact that there are far more hackers out there targeting MS Windows machines than Linux, Mac and Solaris users combined.

Edited by DanExcel
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 year later...
  • 1 month later...

The best choice for you "depends on your requirements, budget, and how you feel about Control and Responsibility. Responsibility can be expensive. Can you afford to pay a team to plan, design, code, test, and continuously support your software? Do you have a realistic budget and time frame? Is the control worth the responsibility? If the answer is yes, then go with self-hosted custom software or self-hosted open source software.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 6 months later...
  • 7 months later...


Hi James,


         In my point of view, the fact is that closed source is better than open source. :)


         With Closed Source,

  1. You never have to fix components when something goes wrong. But with Open Source, things occasionally go wrong.
  2. You don't have to worry about contributing your changes back to a community. But with open source, there's an expectation that if you fix a bug or make an improvement, you'll contribute your code back to the community that can help test and maintain it over time.
  3. You don't have to think about open source licensing terms and compliance issues. But with open source, you have to comply with the license terms specified by the components you're using.
  4. You don't have to choose among dozens of options for every component. But open source offers lots of solutions when considering a database, web server, application server, programming language, GUI framework, and the like.
  5. You don't have to look around for slide shows. But with open source, it can take some time to find conference presentations, architectural diagrams, screenshots, and other documentation.
  6. You don't have to look around for technical support. But you can get open source support from a community, your own engineers, or professional open source support organizations.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...