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Open source software gets boardroom acceptance

Businesses are no longer convinced that traditional proprietary software is any more secure or manageable than open source code, according to a new survey. As a result, many are opting for the cheaper option.

The study, conducted by applications vendor Ingres, claimed that 75% of UK businesses have deployed, or plan to deploy, open source software for core business systems.

Brian Mort, Ingres' senior vice president for Northern Europe, claimed this showed that open source has gained top level acceptance. "It has moved out of the basement and into the boardroom."

Mort argued that open source software's versatility and adaptability have been key selling points. However, some critics say the attraction is not the strength of open source software, but disappointment with proprietary software suppliers.

"At least with open source you avoid enterprise avoid vendor lock-in and save money," was a typical response to Ingres's study of UK public sector and private businesses.

But Mort claimed that open source has raised its standards to win admirers, rather than mopped up disaffected customers of traditional proprietary software. "Open source had to grow up and offer the highest levels of service, support, security and enterprise-grade reliance," he said.

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