University of Phoenix
INTRODUCTION TO OPERATING SYSTEMS
Over the past twenty or so years, there has been a never ending debate within the computing social realms, on whether software operating systems should be developed as open source or whether private companies should keep their source code closed from users of the software. This paper will define open source and closed source software models. In addition, a comparison between open source and closed source operating systems will be examined. Finally, examples of each type of operating system will be given. Closed source software is designed and developed by either a private company or person. Only the final executable product is released to its customers. The source code is essentially locked away and restricted from being viewed, modified, and re-distributed by anyone not having any ownership or licensing rights to the software. These types of applications are copy right or protected as intellectual property. Open source software on the other hand, enables the end users the ability to utilize the software, the right to view, modify, and distribute the source code as long as the original developers are given their due credit. The main benefit to producing closed source software is to make money, and to create a business of developing software that can only be redistributed with the purchase of a license to do so. In addition, the companies or individuals who develop the source code, have complete control over the inner workings of the software. Open source software, on the other hand, has a much broader explanation for its foundation. Many developers see open source as a way to contribute and make a difference. Others support open source so as not to rely on any single person or company for their software needs. Still, others see it as a way to compete against certain companies who may want to monopolize the industry. As stated...