If you’re thinking of implementing an Open Source software solution for your business you need to understand how it can help you but also how it can be dangerous. Although the general consensus among system administrators is that open source software is good I’ll explain both sides of the argument.
Advantages of open source software
For someone with programming knowledge, looking at the source code of a software application that you are using can give you lots of insight into the software. Consider this analogy: You buy a used car. If you have mechanical skills then you’ll want to open the hood and check the fluids and overall condition of the engine. But what if you could not open the hood or even check if the tires had the correct pressure? This is how many system administrators feel when they use software that isn’t open source.
Another advantage would be cost of the software. Open source software is usually free or much less expensive than their counterparts. If you plan on building other application on the open source software however you may have problems with licensing issues.
Disadvantages of Open Source Software Solutions
One of the main problems with this type of software is that hackers can find bugs and errors in the code of the program. They can then use these bugs to create exploits and possibly compromise a system. Alternatively, a system administrator can also view the code and find problems as well.
Another disadvantage would be the technical aspect of the software. Most open source programs are tech heavy and created with more advanced users in mind. Although this was once the rule it has been moving to a more user friendly environment.