- Paperback: 242 pages
- Publisher: Prentice Hall; 1st edition (September 30, 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0130476773
- ISBN-13: 978-0130476777
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,632,916 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Business and Economics of Linux and Open Source 1st Edition
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From the Back Cover
The manager's guide to using Linux and open source for competitive advantage.
Using Linux and open source technologies, thousands of enterprises are cutting costs, gaining flexibility, and discovering powerful new sources of business value. Now, there's an objective, realistic manager's guide to using Linux and open source technology for competitive advantage. Martin Fink helps you get past both the hypesters and the naysayers, so you can accurately assess the benefits, costs, and risks of open source in your organization. Writing strictly from the manager's viewpoint, Fink covers every step of the Linux and open source project lifecycle, and every crucial issue, from licensing to collaborating with the open source community of developers. Coverage includes:
- Assessing the costs, benefits, and risks of pursuing Linux and open source initiatives
- Open source licensing: avoiding the minefields
- Managing Linux and open source projects within your company
- Assessing the size, breadth, and capabilities of the open source community
- Building strong, positive, synergistic relationships with external open source communities
- The crucial role of Linux standards
- Integration, development, deployment, migration, coexistence, support, and training
- Understanding the difference between the Linux kernel and the Linux operating system
- Understanding and choosing Linux distributions
- How the open source paradigm impacts commercial software developers
- Open source business models: what it takes to make a profit from open source technology
- Applying the open source development methodology in a corporate setting
"A thought-provoking analysis of the role of open source software in the corporate environment. A must-read guide for managers considering how open source can help their organization."
Tim O'Reilly, O'Reilly and Associates, Inc.
About the Author
MARTIN FINK is General Manager for Hewlett-Packard's Linux Systems Division, where he has been leading Linux development activities for more than three years. He is responsible for driving HP's overall Linux and open source strategy and managing the firm's open source business processes. He is also Vice President of the Board of Directors for the Open Source Development Lab, a global consortium of industry leaders dedicated to promoting Linux and Linux-based programming for enterprise and carrier-class environments.
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Part I brings the reader to a sufficient level of familiarity with Linux, open source, licensing, communities and celebrities. Unless you are fully in touch with the open source world, you will certainly learn useful information in this part.
Part II explains what it means to implement Linux in your operations. No attempt is made to review or benchmark available distributions, and no selection process is presented, only some guidance is provided. This is understandable: Linux can take many shapes and forms and you can even create your own distribution. Because of this diversity, a whole chapter is devoted to standards that make it possible to use multiple distributions. The subject of Total Cost of Ownership is also covered, not in terms of numbers, but in terms of items to consider for calculating a total cost. There is no magic formula here, only an indication of what you should consider and how open source can affect the bottom line. The author then discusses the activity of deploying Linux, considering the issues of migration, coexistence, hardware, support, and training. Here again the author provides essential guidance without covering all the details of such undertaking.
Part III is about how to integrate open source into your organization. This is probably where most of the added value of this book lies. It is really in this part that the author draws from his experience in managing open source in a large organization. He first attempts to provide a functional model for an organization developing software, focusing on enabling an open source process as opposed to a conventional development model. This model may assume a large set of developers and may come out of the blue (it is presented then discussed), but it clearly demonstrates how much of a cultural change it requires to fully reap the benefits from an open source process, and how much other corporate functions such as marketing and HR have to adapt accordingly. Most importantly, this model can boldly be used as a replacement for conventional closed-source development. The author then covers other valuable topics: gated communities, the time value of software and how open source changes the equation and can be used to your advantage, the business models around open source, when to participate or create open source software, and what should be considered when deciding to use open source.
A highly recommended reading for anybody who is considering leveraging the benefits of open source within their organization.
Linux and Open source is not "just" for geeks anymore. Business is embracing it and needs the guidance this book has to offer. It is the first book I have seen which addresses Linux and open source from a business perspective.
The background on Linux and Open source brings the reader up-to-speed on the key players and culture of the open source community and why it would be considered - staying focussed on facts and data. From this, Martin goes on to discuss the different issues one must address in considering the implementation of this technology in the Enterprise including the real costs and benefits.
Martin lends credibility to this topic as he is currently the VP & CTO at Hewlett-Packard heading its Linux Systems Division. He has to grapple with these issues everyday...
At a conference where Martin was speaking at recently, a senior executive at IBM mentioned that he was giving this book (an HP executive's book) to IBM's customers. Having read the book, I now understand why.