An open source software refers to a computer application whose source code is available and accessible for the public to analyze or customize as per the requirements. There is no argument over the fact that open source software offers a wide range of benefits as compared to their closed source counterpart. To let you have a better understanding, we have taken the liberty of accentuating five of the topmost benefits that such software has to offer. Without further ado, let’s take a closer look at our list.
The first and the foremost benefit of an open source software is that it enables you to have exclusive control over the program. You can inspect the software to make sure that it serves the purpose that you wish and enables you to curtail the parts of it that you don’t find aligned to your requirements. In other words, customizability of the software is entirely in your hands provided that you have chosen the open source software. Even if you are not a developer, you can still get to reap the benefits of an open source software since there is no forbiddance oversharing or distribution of the software. You get to be the in charge of defining the purpose and fashion in which you would like to make use of the software.
More often than not, an open source software is considered to be relatively safer for the end user as compared to the proprietary software or the closed source software. The reason being the source code of the former being publicly available. Therefore, a wide range of developers from all over the world can inspect the software and fix the bugs or shortcomings which were unfortunately missed by the original authors of the software. Since there is no such requirement of taking the permission from the original authors before customizing the software, updating and upgrading the software becomes more efficient that improves the overall security of the program.
Another major benefit that open source software offer is more educational. Such software can be conveniently put to use for learning purposes, thanks to the source code being available to the public. A student can easily get his hands on the source code for inspection and learning. The amount of information which can be extracted and the help it renders in mastering the skills is truly unprecedented. What’s more is that students can share their customizations with the professionals to invoke critique that further helps in improving their programming skills.
It should go without saying that an open source software is also considered to be more reliable by the end users for crucial or long-term projects. The reason being the public availability of the source code which ensures that the user won’t end up being stuck in the middle of nowhere if the original authors decided to take the software down or just quit working on it any further. Since the open source software not only incorporate but also operate as per the open standards, the reliability of such applications is not to be questioned.
Last but not the least, one of the major reasons why users prefer the open source software is the overall cost of purchasing, operating, and maintenance of the software. Open source software is known to be more cost-effective for the user as compared to the closed source applications. Blend the benefits mentioned above that an open source software offers with an added feature of cost-effectiveness, and you have yourself a perfect piece of the application that serves your purpose without pushing you off the edge of your budget either.
Considering the benefits mentioned above, it won’t be wrong to conclude that an open source software has a wide range of benefits to offer under certain circumstances. Remember that those above are only a fraction of the benefits that an open source software has to offer. With such advantages at your disposal, what else could you possibly want? Give it a go, and you’d be able to see for yourself. Rest assured, you can never go wrong with the decision of choosing an open source software.