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Open source software is software whose source code is available for modification or enhancement by anyone.
"Source code" is the part of software that most computer users don't ever see and is used by computer programmers to manipulate and change how a piece of software—a "program" or "application"—works.
Open source software is one of those things that splits opinion. Some people love it, and others can’t stand it.
Read on to find out the pros and cons of Open Source software
Pros of Open Source Software
The primary reason most people choose to use open source software is that it’s entirely customizable. This means you can change it so that it functions in the way that best suits you and your needs. This is an option that you don’t get with conventional forms of software, so it’s a big pull for users who like to use their software in a unique way. It’s all about getting the functionality of the software just right.
Affordability is a big bonus too. It’s undisputed that open source options tend to be much cheaper than closed software. It’s not only cheaper in terms of the upfront costs; it’s cheaper every step of the way. It’s cheaper to protect against viruses and it’s cheaper to update too. All in all, if money is your concern, then it makes sense to opt for an open source option. You should click here to find out more about what goes into putting together open source software and hardware.
Bugs tend to get dealt with very quickly on open source software as well. This is because there are many people working on it and exploring all the software’s avenues. So, when a bug is noticed, it can be fixed very easily. It’s simply not possible to explore an Apple or Windows operating system in this way. This means it often takes longer for bugs to be fixed by the employees at those companies.
Downside of Open Source Software
The first major disadvantage of open source software and hardware is that it’s often not easy to use. You can’t simply log on and immediately get the hang of open source software. It’s something that you have to learn over time and dedicate time to. Sometimes, you have to read a lot about the software and play about with it before you can properly understand it. This can be a pain for people who don’t have the patience for it.
There is also a shortage of applications that can be run on open source operating systems. This is what puts a lot of people off switching to an open source option because some of their old applications will become useless. You should conduct a full analysis before making the switch to make sure that you don’t lose the ability to use applications you’ve paid for. There is also a problem with many forms of hardware that aren’t compatible with open source software.
When you start using open source software, you’re on your own. There’s no form of support that can back you up the way there is when you use conventional software. This can be a problem for people who face a problem and then find that they have no idea how to solve it. To overcome the issue, you’ll have to learn more about the software and how to use it efficiently. If you can’t do this, you’ll be in trouble.
What has your experience been with Open Source Software? Tell us below or Tweet me using the hashtag #SashaTalksTech
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