Differences between free software, proprietary software and open source

We have all heard of free software or open source (open source), and yet many people do not know the importance of understanding the difference between these terms. In non-computing environments, these concepts are not heard often but they are really present in their day to day because they affect the programs of any electronic device, such as a computer, tablet or Smartphone.

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A proprietary software only defends the interests of the company that markets it and it cannot be modified by outsiders to satisfy particular needs. Instead, free or open software is accessible to everyone and can be modified to respond to the requirements of each individual.

A program can be considered free software when it respects the four essential freedoms:

  • Freedom 0: allows you to run the program however you want.
  • Freedom 1: you can study the source code of the program and you are free to change it, with the idea that it can do any necessary action.
  • Freedom 2: allows you to make and distribute exact copies of the program whenever you want and thus help others.
  • Freedom 3: you can contribute to the community, with the ease of making or distributing copies with your modified versions of the program.

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According to Richard Stallman, founder of the Free Software Movement, comments that “These freedoms are of vital importance, not only for the good of the user but for the entire society, since they promote solidarity. Its relevance increases as our culture and daily activities become more and more linked to the digital world ”.

For schools, having free software is an insurmountable benefit because it allows them to save money by not having to pay permissions to use proprietary software. The convenience of being able to study the programs is vital for those who want to learn to program, since reading the code of others will serve as teaching or to solve problems.

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Terminology open source (open source) was born to avoid a possible misunderstanding with the concept free software (free software). In English, this word is interpreted as free but in this case it really refers to the freedom of the program and not its price.

 All free software is open source, but not every open source program is free software. The difference is in the licenses that can be used for the program: some are less permissive than others and little respect the aforementioned freedoms.


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6 comments, leave yours

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  1.   Roberto Ronconi said

    I recommend the comparison chart in the article On licenses and damages to open source in this blog https://blog.desdelinux.net/sobre-las-licencias-y-los-perjuicios-al-codigo-abierto/

  2.   mantisfistjabn said

    The comparative table of that article is a total nonsense, it was already said at the time. Recommending it is absurd.

  3.   Franz said

    What absurd nonsense are you talking about? If this is a blog about free and open software and technologies, this article is very good for those users who are just starting out in this world of Linux and free software.

  4.   MARTIN said

    AS MENTIONED ON THE GNU.ORG PAGE THERE IS A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN FREE SOFTWARE AND OPEN SOURCE

    TEXTUAL QUOTE
    »
    Open source software ("Open Source")

    Some people use the term "open source" software to refer to more or less the same category as free software. However, they are not exactly the same type of software: they accept some licenses that we consider too restrictive, and there are free software licenses that they have not accepted. However, the differences between what the two categories cover are few: almost all free software is open source, and almost all open source software is free.

    We prefer the term "free software" because it refers to freedom, which is not the case with the term "open source."
    »
    END OF QUOTE

    THE SOURCE IS: http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/categories.html

    AND THESE DIFFERENCES MUST BE MARKED TO KNOW HOW TO DISTINGUISH THEM

    IN THE DOCUMENTARY REVOLUTIONOS THIS DIFFRENCE IS ALSO MARKED

    https://youtu.be/9ip3UA_04LM?t=48m6s

  5.   Sebastian Meza said

    What he refers to is that the information he provides is wrong, it is good to inform, but if we are going to do it, the ideal thing is that it be reliable information ... and if you realize when reading that post, the table that appears there has a few points that are quite contradictory, and in the same comments you will be able to realize why.

    regards

  6.   emmanuel said

    I will appreciate that the bad comments are bad for all, since the aid that they place in the pejinas and that the people interested in helping provide us are very beneficial for all, if someone has better theories and ideas in all, publish them yourself and avoid creating destructive comments and try to create constructive comments for all visitors to asta and other pages ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, ………………… ..————- THANK YOU— ———– ……………………. ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,