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Free and Open Source Software

tagline: openSUSE sitesinden

All the software on the LiveCD and the DVD are Free and Open Source software, with a few notable exceptions (Flash, Opera, Acrobat Reader and more) in the non-oss repositories. When we talk about free software we refer to freedom not a price.

Özgür Yazılım ne demektir

The free software movement was started by Richard M. Stallman and GNU in 1984, later the Free Software Foundation was founded.

Özgür Yazılım Vakfı'nın ifadesiyle özgür yazılım, belli başlı dört özgürlüğü barındırır:

  • Özgürlük 0  : Her türlü amaç için yazılımı çalıştırma özgürlüğü.
  • Özgürlük 1  : Yazılımın nasıl çalıştığını inceleme ve kendi gereksinimleri doğrultusunda değiştirme özgürlüğü. Yazılım kaynak koduna erişim bunun için bir ön şarttır.
  • Özgürlük 2  : Kopyalarını dağıtma ve toplumla paylaşma özgürlüğü.
  • Özgürlük 3  : Yazılımı tüm toplumun yarar sağlayabileceği şekilde geliştirme ve geliştirilmiş haliyle yayınlama özgürlüğü. Yazılım kaynak koduna erişim bunun için de bir ön şarttır.

Non-free software is also called proprietary software. Free software should not be confused with freeware; freeware is free as in free beer, not as in freedom.


Açık Kaynak Kodlu Yazılım ne demektir

The open source movement was started in the late 90s, and originated as part of a marketing campaign for Free Software. It emphasize the technical and economical benefits of open source code and open development, and care little or nothing at all about the ethical aspects. However there is very little software acknowledged by the Open Source Initiative that is not also Free Software, hence the term FOSS (Free and Open Source Software) is often used.


Benefits of Free and Open Source Software

These freedoms benefit users in many ways. Without access to the code and the right to modify it and distribute it a distribution like openSUSE would not be possible at all.

Fix the software

These freedoms mean that you can fix bugs, which exist in all software, or you can change the software to do what you need it to do, or even fix security issues. In the case of proprietary software you can ask the provider to add functionality and fix bugs, and maybe they'll do it when it suits them, maybe not.

Share

Free software enables you to share software and thus help your friends and neighbours without you having to breach licenses.

Know and control what is going on

With proprietary software you can't know what a given program _really_ does. Some very well known proprietary software has been caught spying on users and sending information about their behaviour and such. Proprietary software also has a tendency to include various digital restrictions on what the user can do, when, for how long, etc. With free software you have access to the source code and can study what the program does and change it if you don't like it.

Technical benefits

Open source code makes it possible for more people to see the code and fix it, it can develop faster and become better. This system of "peer review" can be compared to the way scientific research works. In comparison proprietary code is kept secret and rarely seen by anybody outside the company behind it.

Economic benefits

It's also a way in which companies can share development costs. For example Novell and Red Hat are competitors yet they develop many of the same programs and thus help each other. IBM and HP could also be seen as competitors yet they both contribute to the Linux kernel, etc., thus sharing development costs.

Free software makes a competitive market for support possible, potentially hightening the quality of support. With proprietary software only the provider who has access to the source code can realisticly offer decent support, and thus has a kind of monopoly.


I'm not a programmer, why should I care?

Most of these freedoms require you to be able to read and write code for you to take advantage of them directly. But even though you're not a hacker you'll benefit, from others taking advantage of these freedoms, or you can join together with others and pay a programmer to make changes that you'd like or need - or you can take advantage by using the openSUSE distribution.


External links