eGovernance in India

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What is FOSS, and why FOSS?

Posted by egovindia on June 1, 2006

What is FOSS, and why FOSS?


Free and open-source software (FOSS) has gradually evolved from the disjointed efforts of a few early pioneers to a global movement with a substantial technical and commercial base with political overtones, especially to developing countries. The success of the FOSS program has arisen primarily from the fact that it has been able to successfully cater to both developers and users of software, as summarized below:

(1) Generators of FOSS, namely developers. Part of the motivation that FOSS provides to programmers is the capability to initiate and manage small as well as large projects outside the corporate environment, some involving hundred or more people world-wide. The projects range from the OS kernel itself to cutting-edge applications. Another motivating consideration is the wide exposure that FOSS projects give to designers. Some exponents such as Torvalds and d'Icaza are even known to the general public, but it is the respect of their peers for their technical and project skills that empowers the majority of FOSS contributors.

(2) Consumers of FOSS, which includes developers, commercial users as well as the general public. Early successes of FOSS, namely editors and the gcc compiler and library suite, were leveraged by programmers to generate window managers, stacks, system and network applications, productivity suites, as well as graphical and other user applications. Such a broad variety of software is needed for a complete OS distribution that can compete with those from commercial vendors. The success and technical viability of the FOSS program can be gauged from the fact that Linux, a FOSS kernel, is rapidly becoming the preferred choice for critical back-end and network servers in commercial organizations.

In developing countries, in particular, the stability of FOSS distributions has enabled low-cost deployment of sophisticated IT infrastructure. FOSS clearly provides access to excellent primary sources for learning material for students, while the transparency of the technology has re-invigorated the technological and philosophical debate on private vs. public right of access to information. Throughout, the FOSS movement has been both the technical backbone as well as the main beneficiary of the exponential growth of the Internet, especially in developing countries.

Portions of this document are derived from the UNCTAD E-commerce and Development Report 2003, a comprehensive overview of FOSS.

I. Introduction

Free and open-source software (FOSS) challenges our preconceptions about how software is used, produced and distributed. The software industry today generates yearly revenues in excess of $300 billion. FOSS is software that has made its source code free and public and allows – perhaps even motivates – users to change the source code and redistribute the derivative software. While liberating the source code is a goal in itself, FOSS encourages, or even obliges, programmers to give other programmers and users those same freedoms and opportunities

Free code supports broad collaborative development in software production, better porting with other programs produced by independent programmers, and the customization of software to meet different commercial, regulatory and cultural requirements. Most importantly, in particular for developing countries, FOSS allows tomorrow’s experts and information technology leaders to acquire skills and advance their knowledge rapidly.

The UNCTAD E-commerce and Development Report 2003 presents a comprehensive overview of the FOSS phenomenon and explains why it is important for governments, business and civil society to seriously and openly debate and consider the benefits of a positive and pro-active approach to FOSS. Parts of the material below have been taken from this document.

FOSS is a type of software as well as a methodology, a philosophy and a movement. The defining institutions are the Free Software Foundation (FSF) and the Open Source Initiative (OSI). The FSF uses the term "free software", while the OSI coined the term "open source software". They approach FOSS issues differently and plentiful information and exact definitions can be found on their websites:

Free Software Foundation

Open Source Initiative 

II. Some FOSS Systems and tools


            Operating systems written in FOSS have mushroomed in the last decade. Apart from commercially important ones such as Linux and BSD, there are a large number of open implementations of OS variants (Be, Nextstep). The X Windows system itself is open, a FOSS Motif clone is available, and open window managers have progressed from twm to full environments such as KDE and Gnome. An interesting cross-OS example is the Wine project.

            Networks are currently synonymous with systems, and the core BSD stack for TCP/IP has been highly optimized for performance. A large number of stacks for other network protocols, including 802.xx, are available in FOSS. The backbone of net mail, namely sendmail, has always been open.

            Device driver development has sustained the growth of FOSS. Although there still remain holdouts in specialized hardware, all major PC-based devices have FOSS drivers.

            Many embedded systems now incorporate FOSS based OS's. Tiny OS is a good example of an open micro-OS for sensor networks.

Programming Tools:

            There are a large number of tools available in open source. Compilers exist for almost every programming language, including procedural languages such as C and Java; extended scripting languages such as Perl and Python; inferential languages such as Prolog and functional languages such as LISP. Compilers for languages such as Lex and Yacc are also available.

            Beginning with Emacs, there are now a large number of text editors, many extensible. From 2000, there have a number of IDE's also available in FOSS, with Eclipse being a good example.


            Gimp is a good stand-in for Photoshop-like capabilities. Vector graphing tools such as Sodipodi are also available.

            Pine is an established open client, and Evolution and Thunderbird are modern-day UI-based clients. Open IM clients are freely available. The Mozilla effort has culminated today in Firefox.

Parallel computing:

            PVM and MPI implementations have been available from the outset as FOSS. The advent of Linux-based Beowulf clusters marked the onset of cheap parallelism, and MOSIX is a good example of distributed computing. FOSS today has seized a good part of this aspect of high-end computing.

Scientific applications:

            Scilab, xmgrace and xfig are standard FOSS tools for scientists and engineers. LINPACK has always been open, and FOSS symbolic manipulation packages are available. Many key biological applications are open, from BLAST in bioinformatics to NIH ImageJ for manipulation of biological images. As another example, GRASS is an open tool for GIS data.

Other examples:

            Vorbis pioneered efforts for open codecs for streaming audio and video beginning with Ogg.


Office tools:

            A suite of office tools that includes applications such as, word processor, presentation, spread sheet, database etc. is a basic requirement. The open source community has developed several tools including Open Office, Abi Word, KOffice and so on. Some of these tools, Open Office for example provides compatibility with proprietary software that helps the users to continue to use the older documents created.

            The open source community is also active in localizing these office tools and bringing their local language versions, where by the users have the complete interface in local language. BharateeyaOO is a noteworthy initiative in localising the Open Office in Indian languages. Currently Hindi and Tamil versions of the Open Office have been completed and made available for the users.

e-Commerce tools:

            The e-Commerce is one of the most important developments after the proliferation of the web. Several tools are required to setup an e-Commerce portal and not all companies that want to sell their products through the web can afford to either develop their own tools or spend huge money on proprietary software.

The FOSS community again gives the helping hand. Zen cart, OSCommerce and XT-Commerce are few of the e-Commerce software used widely. These tools include cart management and content management modules including the database and query functionalities for managing the content. All these tools also provide options for integration with 3rd party payment gateways.


            Electronic governance is becoming the mantra of the government bodies worldwide. E-Governance makes the task of G2C (Government to Citizen) interactions fast, easy and hassle free apart from avoiding the red-tape and corruption. Several e-Governance projects have been initiated in the recent past both in India and abroad and have resulted in significant benefits. Open-source based e-Governance initiatives offer cheap solution, as compared to proprietary solutions, to the governments with substantially reduced cost, thus saving the tax payer’s money.

            Open source has again proved its worth by making available several applications including Document Management Systems (DMS) – KnowledgeTree, DocMgr etc., database – Postgresql, MySQL, Knowledge Management systems – Owl etc.

Library Management & Electronic Library:

            Several OS applications have been developed that provide an integrated platform for digital libraries. Greenstone Digital Library Software (GDLS), Koha, Emilda, Obiblio are few of the popular library management systems. All these library management applications provide functionalities such as OPAC, catalouging, circulation, Acquisition etc.

Internationalisation and Localisation:

            Internationalisation is an activity to ensure that different formats and protocols do not create barriers for languages, writing systems, character codes and other local conventions. Babel, Mozilla internationalisation etc. are few of the popular efforts in internationalisation. Localisation refers to the process of adapting a product or service to a particular language, culture, and desired local. Several projects worldwide are being localized to suit the local language and culture. The important aspect about the open source movement is that both internationalization and localization are made easy.

The attached Table gives a summary of  relevant information


Some common Commercial software and their equivalent FOSS option


Commercial software

FOSS option


Business use of GNU/Linux

            Over half of the large enterprises expected increases of up to 25% in the number of GNU/Linux users, while nearly 20% expected increases of over 50%. In small companies, over one third felt that GNU/Linux usage would expand by 50%. The most important factors identified that drove these decisions were reliability, lower price, speed of applications, and scalability (Zona Research study).

            The global top 1000 Internet Service Providers expect GNU/Linux use to increase by 154%, according to Idaya’s survey conducted January through March 2001. A survey conducted by Idaya of the global top 1000 ISPs found that they expected GNU/Linux to grow a further 154% in 2001. Also, almost two thirds (64%) of ISPs consider the leading open source software meets the standard required for enterprise level applications, comparable with proprietary software.

            A 2002 European survey found that 49% of CIOs in financial services, retail, and the public sector expect to be using OSS/FS. OpenForum Europe published in February 2002 a survey titled Market Opportunity Analysis For Open Source Software. Over three months CIOs and financial directors in financial services, retail and public sector were interviewed for this survey. In this survey, 37% of the CIOs stated that they were already using OSS/FS, and 49% expected to be using OSS/FS in the future. It is quite likely that even more companies are using OSS/FS but their CIOs are not aware of it. Perceived benefits cited included decreased costs in general (54%), lower software license cost (24%), better control over development (22%), and improved security (22%).

            An Evans Data survey in 2004 found that 1.1 million developers in North America were working on OSS/FS projects. Evans Data’s North American Developer Population Study examined the number of software developers using various approaches. It found that more than 1.1 million developers in North America were spending at least some of their time working on Open Source development projects.

            A 2004 InformationWeek survey found that 67% of companies use OSS/FS products, with another 16% expecting to use it in 2005; only 17% have no near-term plans to support OSS/FS products. Of those companies using OSS/FS, they found that 42% of companies implement production database operations using OSS/FS, with 33% more considering it; only 25% are not using or considering OSS/FS for production database use

            A Japanese survey found widespread use and support for GNU/Linux; overall use of GNU/Linux jumped from 35.5% in 2001 to 64.3% in 2002 of Japanese corporations, and GNU/Linux was the most popular platform for small projects.  The most interesting results are those that discuss the use of Linux servers in user enterprises, the support of Linux servers by vendors, and Linux server adoption in system integration projects. Linux servers are the fastest growing category from last year. The average units of server per enterprise increased by 2.5-fold from 5.3 units to 13.4 units. Linux is already a major OS when compared with its competitors. There is an increasing rate of Linux server adoption in system integration projects. GNU/Linux servers are No.1 (62.5%) in small projects less than $24,000, and GNU/Linux has grown in larger projects more than $400,000 US from 20.0% to 39.0%. In projects over $800,000 US, Linux is adopted by 24.4% of the projects (mainly as a substitute for proprietary Unix systems). 49.3% of IT solution vendors support Linux in Japan.

            The European FLOSS study found significant use of OSS/FS. The large report Free/Libre and Open Source Software (FLOSS): Survey and Study, published in June 2002, examined many issues including the use of OSS/FS. This study found significant variance in the use of OSS/FS; 43.7% of German establishments reported using OSS/FS, 31.5% of British establishments reported using OSS/FS, while only 17.7% of Swedish establishments reported using OSS/FS. In addition, they found that OSS usage rates of larger establishments were larger than smaller establishments, and that OSS usage rates in the public sector were above average.

To know more about these–

FOSS is often used in mission-critical environments. Many industry standard applications are in fact open-source programs. Following is a list of selected notable open-source programs. A comprehensive list of FOSS software can be found at the UNESCO and UNDP websites. There are many web sites that host FOSS development or catalogue FOSS programs. and are among the more popular.

Firefox, Camino and Mozilla are FOSS Internet web browsers and are all part of the Mozilla project that was established after Netscape opened the source code for its browser in 1998. Mozilla is a comprehensive suite that includes an email client and a HTML web-page design application. Firefox is the new stripped-down browser that aims to be just a fast and efficient browser. The email and webpage design applications from Mozilla are being carried forward by the Thunderbird and Nvu projects.

The open-source Web server software Apache, which sends Web pages to the computer of someone accessing a web site, has dominated its market segment since 1996 and now holds at least twice the market share of its nearest competitor.

GNU/Linux has long been popular as an operating system running computers that perform as Web servers. Recent surveys show that GNU/Linux runs 29.6 per cent of Web servers. In the last few years GNU/Linux has increasingly penetrated both the high and low ends of the enterprise market for server operating systems. GNU/Linux readily runs on Intel/AMD type PCs, while versions for other hardware have been developed as well. To install GNU/Linux, one must have a "distribution". You can buy a CD, download or make a distribution. Linux Online is just one website with comprehensive information, FAQs and links. However, there are many professional and amateur online resources for GNU/Linux that may be explored and used.

The BSD/OS/FreeBSD/NetBSD/OpenBSD families of operating systems are UNIX-based, free/open-source operating systems similar to GNU/Linux. Developed at the University of California-Berkeley in the 1970s, BSD is considered one of the most secure and stable operating systems and runs a large percentage of Internet servers. The core of Apple’s Macintosh operating system, Darwin, is based on FreeBSD and has remained in the open-source realm.

GNU was the predecessor of GNU/Linux. It is a free version of UNIX tools created by Richard Stallman in 1984. GNU stands for “GNU is not UNIX”.

Sendmail is a free/open-source programme used for routing approximately 40 per cent of the email that travels over the Internet.

Perl (Practical Extraction and Report Language) is a scripting language freely available for UNIX, MS/DOS, Macintosh, OS/2 and GNU/Linux, among others. Perl has powerful text-manipulation functions and is used extensively for programming Web electronic forms, and generally for generating interfaces between systems, databases and users exchanging data on the Internet. ; ; 

BIND (Berkeley Internet Name Domain) is a free/open-source programme that allows Internet domain names to be entered as text-based names instead of as IP addresses, or series of numbers, making it easier for users to reach sites on the Internet.

The Beowulf Project is a method of connecting computers to form a high-performance computer (Beowulf cluster) that approaches "super-computer" performance. Since a Beowulf cluster can be developed from common, off-the-shelf computers utilizing FOSS, a Beowulf cluster "super-computer" can be built and implemented at a fraction of the cost of other systems with similar computing capacity. is a software suite that provides basic office and administrative automation. An offshoot of Sun Microsystems’ StarOffice, OpenOffice runs on all major operating systems, including MS Windows, as its cross-platform functionality is based on open XML standard file formats.

GNOME and KDE are desktop graphic user-interfaces that run on top of GNU/Linux and UNIX, providing user-friendly computing to the non-programmer open-source community. ;

MySOL  and Postgres are database servers. ;

The Gimp is a graphics programme widely distributed with GNU/Linux. A version for the Windows operating system also exists. It is sometimes called "free photoshop".

III. Country initiatives


What follows is a selective overview of developments in FOSS policy and practice in developing countries. Developments in developed countries have been left out as these are easier to find and are better known as they typically receive better press coverage.

The bill "Policy for Free Software Use for the Federal State" was presented to Argentina's House of Congress in April 2001 and called for mandatory government use of FOSS. The economic crisis forced the Government out before a vote could be taken. A similar bill was re-submitted in March 2002 and is under review. The current bill proposes FOSS as a component of the national campaign against software piracy.

Rio Grande do Sul was the first administration to pass a law making FOSS use mandatory in both government agencies and non-government-managed utilities. Four cities in Brazil have passed legislation requiring preference for "software libre" where an open-source option is available.  The national health care system plans to release 10 million lines of source code. The first annual Free Software International Forum was held in Brazil in May 2000. In the province of Pernambuco, the world's first law regarding the use of open-source software was passed in March 2000.
See and

In 2003, the Secretariat of the Treasury Board of Canada has recongnized that open source software and methods, like other licensed software, are part of the corporate standards-based, IT infrastructure of the Government of Canada. Their acquisition and use must align with the government's Federated Architecture Program, and serve the following principles: reduction of integration complexity; security, confidentiality, privacy and protection of information; proven standards and technology; and maximizing the value of government IT investments and opportunities. (English version)  (French version)

The Government-supported China Academy of Science together with Government-owned Shanghai New Margin Venture Capital established Red Flag Linux, a Chinese-language Linux distribution. The Beijing Software Industry Productivity Center was established by the Beijing municipal government and has launched a project named "Yangfan" to improve the performance of local distributions of GNU/Linux. The strong presence of international FOSS developers, including Turbo Linux, Red Hat and IBM, is noticeable.
See and

A growing attraction to Linux in India has persuaded Microsoft to share source code with a particular government body. The Simputer was developed by a group of scientists from the Indian Institute of Science and Encore Software. Government agencies promote the use of localized solutions such as Indian-language computing. The Centre for Development of Advanced Computing and the Department of Information Technology are supporting the development of a Hindi GNU/Linux distribution called Indix. The Department of Information Technology has expressed an intention to introduce Linux as the de facto standard in academic institutions; research establishments will develop distributable toolboxes; central and state governments will be asked to use Linux-based offerings. The West Bengal Electronics Industry Development Corp Ltd., the state's nodal IT body, has formed a Linux cell to support various government IT projects inside and outside the state. Talks with major FOSS industry players on joint projects are in progress.
See; ; ; ; ; and .

The Government committed in November 2001 to using FOSS in key agencies, such as the Treasury, and in areas such as e-procurement. The Malaysian National Computer Confederation operates an FOSS special interest group. The Prime Minister launched the Komnas (Komputer Nasional) Twenty20 Personal Computer, built on FOSS by the private sector. The Malaysia Institute of Electronic Systems, the ICT advisor to the Government, is pushing the shift towards FOSS, including an attempt to build a low-cost PC based on GNU/Linux.
See,39001153,39071821,00.htm ; ; ; and .

The Government Technology Resources Mobilization Unit has created a "Linux Force" task force that is expected to help Pakistan move toward FOSS. This would include funding for R&D programmes for client software, training and local-language application development.
See .

Congressman Edgar Villanueva has introduced Bill 1609, "The Use of Free Software in Public Administration", to mandate the use of FOSS in all government systems. Congressman Villanueva's open confrontation with Microsoft Peru has earned him and Peru the reputation of being the developing world's FOSS radical.
See .

The Philippines
Bayanihan Linux, developed under the Open Source Project of the Advanced Science and Technology Institute of the Philippines, has had its second release and is bundled with the latest office suite, image and text editors, Internet and networking tools and multimedia applications. Bayanihan is a single-CD installation tailored to local demand.
See .

Republic of Korea
The local company HancomLinux signed a deal in January 2003 with the country's Central Procurement Office to supply the Government with 120,000 copies of its Linux desktop office productivity software, HancomOffice. The open-source software, which is compatible with Microsoft's Office applications, including Word and Excel, is expected to save the Government money in the long run and stimulate business for local companies competing against Microsoft in the software industry.
See .

South Africa
A Government council convened to consider the use of FOSS published an official recommendation promoting the use of open-source applications when proprietary alternatives do not offer a compelling advantage, and highlighted the necessary strategic steps. In January 2003, the Government declared that it would use FOSS and set up a council for scientific and industrial research to help develop programming skills. South Africa has taken the lead in regional collaboration on OSS, including the Free and Open Source Software Foundation for Africa.
See .

The Government-supported technology development group NECTEC has developed a GNU/Linux distribution for schools and government desktops and servers – the Linux-SIS (School Internet Server) for servers and the Linux TLE (Thai Linux Extension) for government desktops. The project aims to narrow the gap between use of pirated and legal software, and to promote local business development.
See .

Viet Nam
Government delegates to a software seminar in Hanoi concluded that Viet Nam could save hundreds of millions of dollars annually and better guarantee information security by switching to FOSS. Vietnamese IT companies are working on FOSS projects by subcontracting with foreign companies and FOSS was included in the National Program on Information Technology.


IV. Organizations and associations


International and regional



FOSSAP – Free and Open Source Software Asia-Pacific

FOSSFA – Free Software and Open Source Foundation for Africa

FSFE – Free Software Foundation Europe

AFUL – L'Association Francophone des Utilisateurs de Linux et des logiciels libres

European Working Group on Libre Software

Free Software and the WSIS process: Free Software Foundation for Europe Portal

National and local

Argentina: Software Libre Argentina (SOLAR)

Austria: Verein zur Förderung Freier Software

Belgium: Association Electronique Libre

Brazil Software Livre

Brazil: Comitê de Incentivo e Produção do Software GNU e Alternativo (CIPSGA) 

Chile: Software Libré Chile

Columbia: Comunidad de Usuarios de Software Libre en Colombia (Colibrí)

FSF France

India: Free Software Foundation of India

Indonesia Open Source Contributors Group

Italy: Pluto Group

Japan Open Source Development Network

Korea, Republic of: GNU Korea

Macedonia (FYR): Free Software Macedonia (needs ISO 8859-5 character set to view)

Peru: Asociación Peruana de Software Libre (APESOL)

Spain: GNU España

Sri Lanka: Lanka Linux User Group (LKLUG)

United Kingdom:

· Association For Free Software (AFFS)

· The Open Source Consortium (OSC)

Yemen: Yemeni FreeSoftware & OpenSource Association (YFOSA)

V. Selected publications

The listed documents have an economics and policy orientation; they are not technical how-to's for using FOSS. A number of writings by Stallman and Raymond, the main thinkers behind the Free Software and Open Source movements, are also listed.

Free/Libre and Open Source Software: Survey and Study
Berlecon Research and the International Institute of Infonomics (III), University of Maastricht (2002).

What good is free software?
Bessen J (2002). In: Hahn R, ed. (2002). Government Policy toward Open Source Software. Washington, DC, AEI-Brookings Joint Center for Regulatory Studies.

An empirical look at software patents
Bessen J and Hunt R (2003). Research on Innovation. 

Open-source software in e-government
Danish Board of Technology 

Open source software: Perspectives for development
Dravis P (2003). The Dravis Group and World Bank InfoDev. 

A Collaborative Fact Finding Study on Open Source Software in Canada
e-Cology Corporation (2003). (English version) (French version)

Politics and programming: Government preferences for promoting open source software
Evans SD (2002). In: Hahn R, ed. (2002). Government Policy toward Open Source Software. Washington, DC, AEI-Brookings Joint Center for Regulatory Studies.

GNU General Public License, v. 2.0
Free Software Foundation) (FSF) (1991).

The Free Software Definition
Free Software Foundation (FSF) (1996).

Cooking pot markets: An economic model for the trade in free goods and services on the Internet
Ghosh RA (1998). First Monday 3 (3). 

Licence fees and GDP per capita: The case for open source in developing countries
Ghosh RA (2003). First Monday 8 (12). 

Free Software and WSIS: Civil Society reference paper on Free Software and its impact on the World Summit on the Information Society
George Greve

The economics of open-source networks
Iannacci F (2002). Communications & Strategies 48. International Telecommunications Society.

Collaborative development of open content: A process model to unlock the potential for African universities
Keats D (2003). First Monday 8 (2).

Economics of Linux Adoption in Developing Countries 
Kshetri N (2004). IEEE Software January/February.

Open source software as lead user’s make or buy decision: A study of open and closed source quality
Kuan J (2003). Paper presented at the second conference on “The Economics of the Software and Internet Industries”, Toulouse, France, 17–18 January.

Code, culture and cash: The fading altruism of open source development
Lancashire D (2001). Code, culture and cash: The fading altruism of open source development. First Monday 6 (12). 

The simple economics of open source
Lerner J and Tirole J (2000). Working Paper 7600. Cambridge, MA, National Bureau of Economic Research. 

The open source movement: Key research questions
Lerner J and Tirole J (2001). European Economic Review 45.

Open source baselines: Compared to what?
Lessig L (2002). In: Hahn R, ed. (2002). Government Policy toward Open Source Software. AEI-Brookings Joint Center for Regulatory Studies, Washington, DC.

Open Sources: Voices from the Open Source Revolution
DiBona C, Ockman S and Stone M, eds. (1999) O'Reilly & Associates, Sebastopol, CA.

Economics of open source software
Pappas Johnson J (2001). F/OSS, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

The revenge of the hackers
Raymond ES (1999a). In: Open Sources: Voices from the Open Source Revolution. O'Reilly & Associates, Sebastopol, CA. 

The Open Source Definition
The Open Source Initiative. .

The magic cauldron
Raymond ES (1999b).

The cathedral and the bazaar
Raymond ES (2000).

The GNU operating system and the free software movement
Stallman R (1999). In: Open Sources: Voices from the Open Source Revolution. O'Reilly & Associates, Sebastopol, CA.

Free as in freedom
Stallman R (Ongoing).

Free and open source software: Implications for ICT policy and development
UNCTAD E-commerce and Development Report 2003, UNCTAD/SIDTE/ECB/2003/1

Free and open source software: Policy and development implications
UNCTAD 2004, TD/B/COM.3/EM.21/2
Also available in: French  Spanish  Arabic  Chinese  Russian

The political economy of open source software
Weber S (2000). Working Paper 140. Berkeley Round Table on the Information Economy.

VI. Some Open source Training initiatives

 1.ILIAS – Tool for creating teaching material, coordinated at the University of Cologne. There are numerous participating universities. (

2.Spain: 80,000 computers for students running Gnome in the region of Extremadura.

3.Organization for Free Software in Education and Teaching. Software for institutions that are interested in proliferating OSS technology, Includes live CD-ROM of free software for schools:  Cost effective good material for school (

4.Linux for Schools Project. The goals of this project are to help schools do the following on their internal networks: Manage Linux user accounts in bulk, set up PHP and MySQL enabled personal webspace, encourage pupils to write their own home pages, help pupils learn the multi-user Linux environment. (

5.K-12 Linux Project. A consortium of projects that aims to proliferate FOSS among school children. (

6.Open Source Schools – The Online Journal of Open Source Software in Schools

7.IteachNet – Tools for international education. (

8.Sourceforge-like repository of software, lessons plans, projects, etc. (


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