Free Software & Open Source

icone linuxMistral Consulting  installed solutions based on Free Software or  Open Source.icone gnu

These are free software (with no cost of licence) and with very high quality, used by many users around the world.

One of the most well known software of this sort is the GNU/Linux system (represented by the logos on the side), but there is also Firefox, LibreOffice/OpenOffice …


What’s the Open Source or Free Software  ?icone Open Source

More precisely Open Source / Free software are created and managed by a group of programming volunteers (called a community) or by a company and are available free of charge and free of rights, they are gratis. It must be noted that  in case of the complex software (enterprise management etc), an installation and training by some one else is likely to be needed in order to be able to use the software correctly. In any cases, it is up to the user to decide what is needed (hence what he’s going to pay).

These software present, in general, common characteristics:

  • tested and reviewed by a big community around the wolrd
  • reactive support: in case of bugs, corrections are published very quickly
  • high technicity: software using the latest breed of technology
  • very active community: forum highly frequented, plugins to add more functions, tutorials …

The difference between a Free Software and an Open Source is quite subtil: it’s mainly a question of point of view. A consensual term has been created FLOSS (Free Libre Open Source Software), and we will use it in the rest of this page.

FLOSS benefits

The advantages our experienced demonstrated with FLOSS usage:

  • No more licences to pay: software are free. But installation and /or training fee may occur.
  • It is possible to modify and configure the software on demand, even to add extra functions: you have the power ! !
  • Security and reliability: software are created and corrected by developers community, any body can read the code and correct it. Critical errors are corrected really quickly.
  • Choice of your IT provider: all big names are present: IBM, Cap Gemini, Bull… and local companies too … like Mistral Consulting.
    You may change IT provider, you are not stuck with the only one company who knows the software and that can modify it.
  • Software choice: it often exists in the FLOSS world many software performing the same tasks. We are here to advise you and help you in your choices.
  • Community help: on the side of the software, exists an active community that will supply help via forum, but also tutorials, manuals and all sort of documentation.
  • Open format: FLOSS use, most of the time, open file formats hence they are more easily interoperable and long lasting. Even without the software used to create the file, it is possible to use the file (using another software).
  • 100% legal: do not use hacked software copy any more !

Many Licences

There are many different licences for Open Source software as well as for Free Software. The interest of each licence is to permit or not some aspects. Some are compatible with the Free Software Fundation and others are not.

On of the most famous licence, the GPL (or GNU GPL) is called viral as any software using some other software (e.g. a library) with the GPL licence is automatically GPL too.

Most of the licences are listed on a page from WhoIsHostingThis.

Some FLOSS icone Firefox icone Android

Android (smartphones), Firefox (Internet Explorer equivalent), Thunderbird (Outlook equivalent), LibreOffice (formerly OpenOffice), most of web Content Management System (WordPress, Joomla, Drupal …),  Apache (runs 70 % of web servers, Microsoft Servers only runs 12 %), the Gnu-Linux system (equivalent of Windows … but more stable and without viruses).