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Software Development Times: Does Open Source Still Matter?

Mar 02, 2001, 19:15 (55 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by J.D. Hildebrand)

[ Thanks to Ernest Pecounis for this link. ]

"Some enterprises jumped onto the open-source bandwagon because they thought they would save money. The purchase price of Windows 2000 Server is a million times higher than the purchase price of Linux, after all. Multiply that by a dozen servers-and slip a few copies of Linux onto the desktop while you're at it-and the savings add up. Or at least, that was the rationale."

"In retrospect, this justification for moving to open source never made much sense. The purchase price of the operating system must be the smallest part of the overall cost of installing and operating an enterprise data system, dwarfed by training costs, support costs, the cost of change and other factors. Every analyst has a proprietary total-cost-of-ownership model, and everyone's equation is slightly different. But they all show that the low cost of acquiring free software is not a significant benefit when amortized over the lifetime costs of the system."

"Open-source software may indeed save you a little bit of money. But the savings isn't sufficient to justify the disruption and cost of changing, nor to sustain the boom in open-source computing."

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