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Web Techniques: The Apache Success Story, Exploring an Open Source Development Process

Oct 10, 1999, 22:14 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Jim Jagielski)

"The Apache Web server is a true success of the Open Source Technology (OST) movement. It's one of the most popular OST packages (in terms of usage and notoriety) along with Linux. According to the latest Netcraft reports, Apache and its derivatives run over 60 percent of all Web sites on the Internet. But Apache can boast another true success, that of the Apache development process."

"I use the term "development process" to describe the general rules and methods used to "control" the way a product is developed. Apache is no different. The Apache Web-Server Project (also known as the Apache Group, although this term more accurately describes the entire Apache Software Foundation, or ASF) uses a clearly defined process to give the contributors the freedom and flexibility to program the way they like, without resulting in total confusion or anarchy. This is no easy task for a project as large as, or a program with as many lines of code as Apache. The very fact that this process works as well as it does is another validation of the Open Source movement, which historically has to handle large numbers of developers from all across the globe."

"Beyond the actual Apache Web server, has the Apache Group also developed a process that other Open Source projects can use? Or are the process and the project simply too closely entwined for the process to work on its own? Let's see."

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