Open Source Market: half of the top packages lack enterprise support

OpenLogic made public research results showing that while enterprises are widely adopting Open Source, half of top packages don’t offer an enterprise support yet.

Researchers in the fourth quarter of 2006 asked to more than 800 IT or business professionals if their organizations are already using OSS and which are the biggest challenges in implementing it.

The top 5 challenges were, in order:

  • Choosing the best open source products
  • Finding enterprise grade open source support
  • Getting open source components to work together
  • Ensuring open source software comes from a trusted source
  • Managing updates of new versions of open source products

The list really worth to read, and I totally agree that selecting the best open source product is considered the most important issue, even more important than finding enterprise level support. Commercial Open Source is getting a mature market, and choosing is eventually becoming mainstream.

OpenLogic asked organizations using OSS whether they have open source policies. The results showed that organizations recognize the need for clear policies:

  • 58% of all respondents have an open source policy, are currently developing one or have a plan to create one.
  • 83% of organizations using more than 25 projects have an open source policy, are currently developing one or have a plan to create one.

Speaking with a layer working at a law firm based in London, I learn that large firms engaged in merger or acquisition of firms having IT assets always require legal advice. to be sure they are using open source and commercial third-party code correctly. Having a clear open source policy may make it easier, indeed.

OSS used in the Enterprise

In separate research, analysis of OpenLogic’s enterprise customers discovered that, on average, OpenLogic customers use 75 different open source packages.

I agree with CBR on line staff saying that:

is not surprising that less than half of the top projects had commercial-grade support options available, although that remains a significant problem in the eyes of enterprise users.

Steven Grandchamp, CEO of OpenLogic, commenting the issue stated:

We know that most technical people understand the many benefits of using open source software but our research shows that there are lingering business concerns, including commercial-grade support, that have enterprises looking for a solution.

I totally agree.