Important factors before choosing Open Source?

One important factor to consider before choosing Open Source components or applications is the activity around the product (homepage). It is vital that your development projects check the following:

  • Does the product have an active developer base?
  • Is there an active community around the product?
  • Is the product backed by a company?
  • Is the product backed by open source organizations such as Apache or external code house?

Only products which have a minimum of activity should be chosen. When evaluating a new Open Source product/library we always have the risk that the community behind it will die, and offer no more bug fix and new features. Many projects today are backed by big companies offering support, and other projects are considered so popular with a big user and developer base so the risk is considered small. When using smaller projects without company support or large user base you need to accept the risk to take over the project yourself to fix bugs and add new features.

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