A Managerial Overview of Open Source Software

10 Pages Posted: 18 Jan 2005

See all articles by Sandeep Krishnamurthy

Sandeep Krishnamurthy

University of Washington, Bothell - E-Commerce and Marketing


Open-source software(OSS) programs (e.g. LINUX, Apache) provide access to the source code to any interested party. This leads to a distributed innovation model where users actively participate in the development of the product. The main purpose of this paper is to help managers who have to choose between OSS and commercial software. Not all OSS products are free. OSS products are distributed under a wide variety of public licenses. They are more reliable, provide greater flexibility and choice to the user and are frequently free. On the other hand, OSS leads to a proliferation of versions and may appeal only to the high-end user. Vendors of open-source products make money by selling the program on a CD, providing support services to enterprises and authenticating versions. The open source system leads to fascinating competitive and cooperative relationships among companies, between a company and a community and among communities.

Keywords: Open Source Software, Linux, Business Model

Suggested Citation

Krishnamurthy, Sandeep, A Managerial Overview of Open Source Software. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=649903

Sandeep Krishnamurthy (Contact Author)

University of Washington, Bothell - E-Commerce and Marketing ( email )

Business Administration Program, UW-1-233
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Bothell, WA Washington State 98011
United States
(425) 352 5229 (Phone)
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HOME PAGE: http://faculty.washington.edu/sandeep

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