EU finds open source cost savings

January 20th, 2007

It’s nice to have my intuition confirmed by research. CNET news reports that an EU research report has found that the total cost of ownership (TCO) of open source software is lower than that of proprietary software. The article doesn’t give much detail about the study itself, and I haven’t had time to search for it, but apparently the findings are based on a study of businesses using open source software in six EU countries. Other findings are that short term costs can be higher because of the cost of staff training (but of course that’s true for any new software implementation), and curiously, that some staff might feel undervalued if they’re asked to work with ‘free’ software. Presumably this comes from a perception that they’re not worth spending money on. What this says to me is that the way open source software is introduced is important, and the benefits need to be made clear to ‘muggles’.

(added January 28, 2007) The full report is 287 pages long. I suggest starting with the executive summary. There are some interesting comments about using open source software in education, and the benefits for students.

Entry Filed under: Free/open source


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