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OpenLogic Launches Free Open Source Library and Knowledge Base

by Mark Figley on Oct 04, 2007 |

Last week OpenLogic launched OpenLogic Exchange (OLEX), a free web site where companies and developers can find, research, and download certified open source packages (more on what "certified" means in a minute). OLEX provides functionality that was previously only available to OpenLogic customers, and while the service is definitely focused on enterprises, OpenLogic is offering a significant subset of it's services to the public for free. Mark Winz, the VP of Enterprise Solutions at OpenLogic, described the intent behind a broader launch this way:

In addition to helping enterprises adopt open source, we believe OpenLogic Exchange will help the broader open source and developer communities by providing free access to download certified open source and search the OLEX knowledgebase. This is part of a broader vision at OpenLogic to help open source adoption become even more viral. We believe that OLEX will help open source thrive and continue to gain traction throughout the market.

The OLEX web site will offer developers the ability to:

  • Research and download enterprise-grade open source software:
    • Enterprises can anonymously browse, search and download 300+ certified open source packages.
    • An extensive knowledgebase for each package provides information on OpenLogic's certification scores, as well as licenses and dependencies between open source packages.
    • OLEX provides source and binary downloads for Linux, Solaris and Windows platforms.
  • Keep up to date: Users can access the latest news, surveys and statistics that are relevant to open source in the enterprise.
  • Improve governance of open source in the enterprise: OLEX provides tools and information on open source policies, licenses, and best practices.
  • Buy open source support, update and indemnification services: OpenLogic sells support, ongoing automatic updates and indemnification on all open source packages in the library.

So what does Certified mean?
OpenLogic identifies packages to certify based on appropriateness for the enterprise; market adoption and momentum; customer requests; and the need to provide alternatives within a particular category. Once identified, OpenLogic employs a 42-point certification process before including open source packages in the library. Approximately one-third of packages identified for certification fail the certification process. OLEX provides visibility into this objective certification process, by providing several OpenLogic Certification Scores. These scores are calculated based on a five-star scale in the following categories:

  • Adoption: The adoption score is calculated on several factors that predict how widely the software is used in the enterprise. Factors include statistics such as the number of downloads over the past year and the number of OpenLogic enterprise customers using the package
  • Community: The community score is based on factors such as how long the project has existed, the size of the developer community and various activity metrics including the number of code commits, bug fixes, and forum posts.
  • Licensing: This score is based on the number of licenses, the types of licenses, license conflicts and any history of legal actions.

These three scores are then averaged to create the Overall score.

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No software quality then? by Steven Devijver

Wow, Hibernate gets 5 stars although it has an XS of 108% (!!) in Structure 101 (compared to 2% for Spring). Makes you wonder.

Misleading figures by Andy Jefferson

Adoption is based on OpenLogic customer adoption, so ignores companies who haven't gone down the OpenLogic support route, instead either not requiring support or relying on direct support from the projects concerned. Hence that stat is totally misleading

Feedback welcome! by Stormy Peters

Steven, Andy,

Thanks for your feedback on the OpenLogic certification process. Steven, we don't use the Structure 101 process in our certification (thanks for the pointer - we are looking for it.) I think our existing scores for both Hibernate and Spring will look reasonable to anyone who knows the projects well. Here's how we currently certify. We have scored each project in three areas, adoption, community and licensing:

* Adoption – this score indicates how broadly the open source package is used in enterprises. We use data that we have (like whether or not our customers use it) and data from other sources like downloads from SourceForge. Andy, while we certify projects that we support and include in our library, we don't weight projects by how many customers purchase support from us. (We ask customers and potential customers which open source software projects they use and we use those numbers for certification regardless of whether they purchased support from us or not. Also, things like number of SourceForge downloads are obviously independent of how much support we sell.)
* Community –this score indicates the strength and robustness of the project’s community. We include a number of stats from how big the community is (judged by number of committers, mailing list activity, etc) to how active it is to how responsive it is (how fast do bugs get fixed?)
* Licensing – this score indicates the relative legal and license complexity. Licensing is often an area enterprises spend a lot of time and effort on so we scored projects high if their licensing was simple: one license, easy to find. The more licenses a project has (especially if some of them are incompatible!) the lower this score gets. Also, non standard and one off licenses will hurt a project's legal score.

Take a look at OLEX and check out the certification scores!

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