Open source battles the mooch-o-meter

Open source battles the mooch-o-meter

Summary: Are you going to choose from among Groundwork, Zenoss, Hyperic or any other project based on their contributions to the movement, or do their contributions to your own bottom line matter exclusively?

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TOPICS: CXO
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Groundwork is trumpeting a Gartner report which describes a growing chorus of grumbles concerning the "big four" of IT management -- HP OpenView, IBM Tivoli, CA Unicenter and BMC Patrol.

But in discussing the report with ZDNet Tony Barbagallo, vice president of product management and marketing (left), acknowledged that the "big bang" in this space has not yet occurred.

"Linux didn’t take off until IBM recognized it and started using it," he said. Someone needs to commit to the process before things really change.

All of which brings me back to William Hurley (right), late of Qlusters, now at BMC and blogging. His first entry seeks to find a middle ground between proprietary and free, which he calls Opensville.

Opensville is a utopia.  Everyone who lives in the adjacent cities spends their free time in Opensville.  The parks are beautiful, the shopping is amazing, and the nights are pure Vegas. Sounds like a great place, huh? One problem: no one actually wants to live there.  No one wants to pay the taxes or put in the effort it takes to keep the city running.  Welcome to Opensville, population zero.

The Gartner report says 55% of the big customers surveyed would consider moving to an open source solution. But thinking isn't doing.

The problem, as WHurley notes, is credit. He suggests a "mooch-o-meter" to measure the real commitment of companies like Groundwork to the open source ideal.

But does this matter to customers? Are you going to choose from among Groundwork, Zenoss, Hyperic or any other project based on their contributions to the movement, or do their contributions to your own bottom line matter exclusively?

Until you're willing to consider the former, I doubt you'll get much help from open source on the latter.

Topic: CXO

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  • Rhetorical Question

    [i]Are you going to choose from among Groundwork, Zenoss, Hyperic or any other project based on their contributions to the movement, or do their contributions to your own bottom line matter exclusively?[/i]

    And the only possible (legally speaking) answer is "your own bottom line." Which is fine, because the problem isn't that vendors are "mooching." It's that the vendor/client model isn't an accurate model for business with F/L/OSS.

    For a clue or two in the direction of a better model, see [url=http://www.linuxdevices.com/articles/AT7621761066.html]Nokia's take[/url] on using open source.
    Yagotta B. Kidding