What Is the State of Enterprise Open-Source Software?

eWEEK DATA POINTS: Red Hat's annual State of Enterprise Open Source report reveals that some organizations are still concerned about security, though overall adoption is growing.

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Red Hat State of Enterprise Open Source

Open source has evolved over the past two decades into a cornerstone of the modern IT landscape.

At the core of the open-source revolution is the concept of enterprise open source, which is software that is backed and supported in a way that makes it easier for enterprises to consume and use in a stable, predictable manner. One of the leading vendors in the enterprise open-source space has long been Red Hat, which has a growing list of enterprise open-source offerings, including its namesake Linux platform, developer, cloud and container offerings.

On April 16, Red Hat released its annual State of Enterprise Open Source report, gauging the landscape for adoption and usage, based on 950 interviews with IT leaders worldwide. In this eWEEK Data Points article, we look at some of the highlights of report.

Data Point No. 1: Open source is important to enterprises.

"The question is no longer whether your enterprise should adopt open technologies," Jim Whitehurst, CEO of Red Hat, stated in the report. "The question is when—and how." 

  • 69% of the survey's respondents indicated that usage of enterprise open source is either important or very important for their organizations.
  • Only 1% noted that open source is not important at all.

Data Point No. 2: Enterprise open source is used for many different applications.

Organizations are using open source for a variety of tasks and services.

  • 45% use open source for website development.
  • 42% use open source for big data and analytics.
  • 43% use enterprise open-source cloud management tools.
  • 41% rely on enterprise open-source databases.

Data Point No. 3: Lower cost of ownership is a key benefit.

  • The study outlined multiple benefits that enterprises derived from enterprise open source.
  • Overall, the leading category, identified by 33% of respondents, is lower total cost of ownership.

Data Point No. 4: Security of open source code is seen as a barrier.

  • Among the barriers to using enterprise open source code, the Red Hat study found that 38% of respondents identified security as the top barrier.
  • 35% identified level of support as a key barrier.

Data Point No. 5: Enterprise open-source use is increasing.

  • Over the past 12 months, 68% of respondents said that their organization's use of enterprise open-source software increased.
  • Looking forward over the next 12 months, 59% of respondents said they plan to further increase their use of enterprise open-source software.

Data Point No. 6: Containers are the future.

  • Containers today largely run on Linux, a trend that has helped drive DevOps in recent years.
  • Over the next 12 months, 67% of IT professionals surveyed by Red Hat stated that they expect their container usage to increase.

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at eWEEK and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.

Sean Michael Kerner

Sean Michael Kerner

Sean Michael Kerner is an Internet consultant, strategist, and contributor to several leading IT business web sites.