Free and open source software (FOSS) is one of those creatures that the technology industry often doesn’t understand. Some still see it as software that is made by a bunch of developers who sit in their home basement all day long and create new products. With help and support from the open source community, some of those programs have become industry standards. The truth is, though, FOSS can be extremely reliable and, regardless of who develops it, whether an amateur software developer or major corporation, it can come in very handy in the enterprise.
But coming in handy is a relative term, as shown by a recent study from Univa, a data center automation company. In its survey of 128 business and IT executives, the company discovered that while FOSS is nearly universally accepted in the enterprise, the vast majority of companies are having some trouble with it. What's worse, many of the problems are occurring in companies’ mission-critical areas of business.
A good number of respondents are so reliant upon FOSS that they are willing to pay for it if doing so would improve the overall quality and support.
"We have always said that users are willing to pay for quality when it comes to open source software, and the results of the survey have confirmed as such," says Univa CEO Gary Tyreman.
Usability and Maintenance Issues Another problem with free and open source software is usability, according to 24% of the respondents. Another 20% complained about a general lack of software support.
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