Solving the open source support challenge

By: Tammy Shvartsman

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Open source software adoption is thriving. Many global organizations have adopted open source technologies or are evaluating an open source strategy as part of their application portfolio. It’s easy to see why: developed through collaboration among developers and organizations with common interests, sharing of intellectual property and a commitment to standards, open source software offers accessible, flexible and innovative solutions. However, to take advantage of the full spectrum of benefits of using open source software, you must be aware of the support challenges and be able to overcome them.

Open source support challenges

Open source vendors often lack the same kind of support resources that proprietary vendors do. Even with a robust and active open source community, few open source software vendors can offer round-the-clock support for their solutions. You might encounter some of the following challenges in getting the technical support you need:

  • Lack of product knowledge and interoperability: A majority of problems with open source software stem from interoperability issues or from other products in the environment outside of the package. Enterprises running complex software stacks are often forced to devote in-house resources — including an already stretched-thin IT staff — to solve problems on their own.
  • Fragmented support: When businesses are running several commercialized versions and packages of open source software, support solutions are often spread out across multiple vendors. Dealing with many different vendors to get the required support can be complicated and tiring.
  • Limited availability of support: Support is often DIY or community-based, which offers no SLAs or guarantees which most enterprise-class customers demand, especially for mission-critical applications or production environments. Fixing issues often become a DIY venture, which means you could spend days or weeks waiting for a solution.

Support for open source solutions

If you are investing in open source software and using it for critical projects, contracting the right technical support is vital. Without it, you could be facing extended downtime whenever an issue occurs.

The IBM Technology Support Services – Open Source community of experts can provide your team with support for the solution stack at any stage of software development. Learn about all the technical support offerings that can meet your requirements in this short webinar.

About The Author

Tammy Shvartsman

Director, Offering Management, Business Line Executive of Software Support, IBM Services

Tammy Shvartsman is the Offering Management Executive for IBM Technology Support Services. Tammy is an expert in creating technical support solutions, and her expertise includes Linux development, client support and loyalty, and storage and server technologies. She partners with key technology providers to deliver around-the-clock support for client’s IT ecosystems across the globe. Her team... Read more