What is Open Source Software

Open SourceFree and open source software, also F/OSS, FOSS, or FLOSS (for Free/Libre/Open Source Software) is software which is liberally licensed to grant the right of users to study, change, and improve its design through the availability of its source code. This approach has gained both momentum and acceptance as the potential benefits have been increasingly recognized by both individuals and corporate players.

‘F/OSS’ is an inclusive term generally synonymous with both free software and open source software which describe similar development models, but with differing cultures and philosophies. ‘Free software’ focuses on the philosophical freedoms it gives to users and ‘open source’ focuses on the perceived strengths of its peer-to-peer development model. Many people relate to both aspects and so ‘F/OSS’ is a term that can be used without particular bias towards either camp.

Free software licenses and Open-source licenses are used by many software packages. The licenses have important differences, which mirror the differences in the ways the two kinds of software can be used and distributed and reflect differences in the philosophy behind the two.

Our favorite Desktop Open Source Software

Ubuntu – Linux based operating system alternative to Windows and Mac OS. It can be used on desktop, laptop computer operating system or as a server operating system

OpenOffice is the leading open-source office software suite for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, graphics, databases and more. You can use this instead of Microsoft Office

Mozilla Firefox – the premier free, open-source browser. Tabs, pop-up blocking, themes, and extensions. Considered by many to be the world’s best browser. Use this instead of Microsoft Internet Explorer or Apple Safari

Mozilla Thunderbird – email application is more powerful than ever. It’s now even easier to organize, secure and customize your mail. Use instead of Microsoft Outlook or Apple Mail.

Our favorite Server Open Source Software

Ubuntu – Linux based operating system alternative to Windows and Mac OS. It can be used on desktop, laptop computer operating system or as a server operating system

Apache – open-source HTTP server for modern operating systems including UNIX, Windows, Mac OS, and Linux. The goal of this project is to provide a secure, efficient and extensible server that provides HTTP services in sync with the current HTTP standards. Apache has been the most popular web server on the Internet since April 1996

MySQL – a database server software that runs on Windows, Mac OS or Linux. Use this instead of Microsft SQL Server, Oracle, or Sybase

PHP – is a widely-used general-purpose scripting language that is especially suited for Web development and can be embedded into HTML

LAMP Server – Linux + Apache + MySQL + PHP. Most common Web Hosting Server setup

Ruby on Rails – is an open source web application framework for the Ruby programming language. It is often referred to as “Rails” or “RoR”. It is intended to be used with an Agile development methodology, which is often utilized by web developers for its suitability for short, client-driven projects.

WordPress.org – is a state-of-the-art publishing platform with a focus on aesthetics, web standards, and usability. WordPress is both free and priceless at the same time. We use this for www.hware.com.

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