Trending February 2024 # The Cloud Vs. Open Source # Suggested March 2024 # Top 5 Popular

You are reading the article The Cloud Vs. Open Source updated in February 2024 on the website We hope that the information we have shared is helpful to you. If you find the content interesting and meaningful, please share it with your friends and continue to follow and support us for the latest updates. Suggested March 2024 The Cloud Vs. Open Source

For years, Linux and free software were perceived as threatened by cloud computing, the online storage of data. However, over the last few years, something ironic happened — free software became a major player in cloud computing.

That wasn’t always the case. In 2008, Richard Stallman, the founder of the Free Software Foundation, condemned cloud computing as “just as bad as using a proprietary program….If you use a proprietary program or somebody else’s web server, you’re defenseless. You’re putty in the hands of whoever developed that software.” Cloud computing, he added, was “worse than stupidity” because it meant that providers controlled customer’s data.

Protecting your company’s data is critical. Cloud storage with automated backup is scalable, flexible and provides peace of mind. Cobalt Iron’s enterprise-grade backup and recovery solution is known for its hands-free automation and reliability, at a lower cost. Cloud backup that just works.


Stallman was referring mainly to the free storage that many providers offer, equating it with the free services provided by social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Free services, he argued, gave the same convenience as free software, but without user control.

The Free Software Foundation’s response to this threat was to release the Affero General Public License, a license designed for online services. However, the Affero License has never been widely used, and critics like me have often noted that the Free Software Foundation has courted disaster by not offering a solution to an obviously growing threat.

What none of us foresaw was that much of the perceived problem would eventually solve itself. Nor could we foresee that free software would become the model for a growing number of cloud vendors. Angel Diaz, Vice President, Software Standards and Cloud Labs, estimates that IBM did seven billion dollars’ worth of business in cloud service in 2014 alone — and that was only a single company.

Cloud services have been dominated by companies like Amazon and Microsoft. However, in 2012, the OpenStack Foundation was founded to administer a project started by RackSpace and NASA. Today, the OpenStack Foundation consists of hundreds of companies, many of whom are also active in free software development, including Canonical, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Red Hat, and SUSE. Others are well-known technology corporations such as Huawei, Oracle, and VMWare.

Such a diverse group required a model for cooperation. The Foundation found it in Linux and the free software movement. It chose the Apache 2.0 license for its software, allowing for a mixture of free and proprietary uses. Just as importantly, it took Linux, free software, and the community that supports them as a direct example, noting how they were organized and how they had survived the cycle of boom and bust around the turn of the millennium.

The result was unprecedented growth, which Chairman of the Board Alan Clark of SUSE attributes largely to the Foundation’s ability to learn from free software’s example. It helped, too, Clark says, to be able to point to a proven success to convince executives of the validity of the approach.

Of course, free software as a means of production does not address Stallman’s concerns about privacy and control of data. Even if users can examine the code for backdoors usable by vendors, they still have no control over who has access to the data, or where and how it is stored.

However, free software is providing alternatives that address these issues as well. For example, Tahoe-LAFS is a free software project that offers the means to encrypt data and to store it in separate chunks across multiple sites and reassemble it, with the result that privacy is returned to the users.

Similarly, ownCloud, which began as a free software project and became a company, offers a relatively easy way for customers to set up their own cloud services while retaining control over their data. The fact that ownCloud does not sell storage itself helps to reinforce its dedication to privacy.

In fact, when ownCloud founder Frank Karlitschek talks, his concerns sound almost identical to Stallman’s. The problem with most cloud services, Karlitschek explains, “is that we give up control of our data, which means privacy is a concern; you don’t really know who has access to the data.”

ownCloud is probably a minor company compared to most members of the OpenStack Foundation, but the signs are that it, too, is flourishing. Still, the point is that, both in the mainstream and in the alternatives, free software has become a dominant player in cloud services. What is more, it has done in less than five years what free software took over twenty do — largely because free software was available as an example.

Apparently, in expressing his concerns for free software, Stallman neglected to consider free software itself as a factor in the situation. The current situation is one that was inconceivable in 2008.

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

You're reading The Cloud Vs. Open Source

Open Source Office Apps: Calligra Suite Vs Libreoffice

For home and enterprise users alike, software like LibreOffice has made desktop Linux a whole lot easier. A reliable office suite is a key part of using a modern computer for most people. Given that important, it’s worth noting that a new Koffice fork has been developed. It’s called Calligra Suite.

Unlike LibreOffice, which doesn’t reflect the styles of one desktop environment over another, Calligra Suite is based on Qt and was definitely designed with the KDE user in mind.

In this article, I’ll be comparing LibreOffice with the Calligra Suite. I’ll be examining the layout of the application features, along with the functionality provided.

Is one better than the other?

Application list compared

Based on a default installation, LibreOffice provides you with several must-have applications. These applications include Writer, Impress, Calc, Draw and Base. LibreOffice Math is also included, but it won’t be included in this comparison. With a default installation of Calligra Suite, you end up with Words, Stage, Tables, and Flow.

Right away, I noticed that Calligra Suite was missing a Base-like application from its suite. Not being overly familiar with the old revision of KOffice, this could be by design.

After digging a bit deeper, however, it looks like Calligra Suite will offer a database program called Kexi. And while Calligra Suite is said to be in a stable release condition, it’s the first stable release for the software. Therefore, I think it’s safe to expect some kind of ongoing evolution with the software with new releases.

Writer vs Words

If you’re like me and find yourself being resistant to change, trying to switch Office suite applications can be painful. In my case, this meant that there was a significant amount of UI shock when learning where everything was with Words. Despite the fact that Writer isn’t all that attractive, at least I know where everything is.

In an effort to make Words easier to use, I tried docking some of the stuff to the right hand side of the application. After having no luck there, I ended up simply trying to make the best of a poorly designed situation.

Words allows me to access functions that I would normally find at the top of my software, in a location that takes away valuable screen real-estate from me. Taking away screen real-estate and not allowing me to move the items interfering with screen space isn’t okay with me.

Thankfully Words gives their users the option of grabbing options from the right-hand side of the screen and moving them to the top. If that isn’t working for you, then you can simply choose to let the menu item “float” like you might in LibreOffice.

Like Writer, Words offers its users spell check. The spell check feature worked well, as I expected that it might. Words offers an auto-correct feature, text selection, formatting and other word processor functionalities that all work really well.

Adding to the stability of the functionality offered, I’ve also been told by a number of testers that Words handles the formatting of MS Office Word documents quite nicely. The one downside to this, however, is that Words doesn’t appear to support the ability to save to .doc or .docx file formats. While this is seen as a win for FoSS fans, it’s self-defeating in the enterprise community, where we still have to rely on Microsoft file formats regardless of our own personal feelings.

Overall, Words is a very solid word processor. For anyone who already uses KDE software, the work flow should feel natural enough, yet it’s a bit of a learning curve if you rely more on Writer from LibreOffice. For me personally, I can’t see myself switching away from LibreOffice Writer, simply because there’s something to be said about having greater freedom with what file formats I can save a document to.

Calc vs Tables

The Rise Of Open Source Hardware

Emile Petrone founded Tindie for selfish reasons. “The basic idea was that there wasn’t a marketplace for the things I was interested in,” he says. At the time, those things were his latest DIY hardware obsessions—specifically, kits to support Arduino and Raspberry Pi. “Ebay’s not really right, and neither is Amazon. Hardware projects had no natural home.”

So in the summer of 2012, Petrone (then an engineer at a Portland startup) launched a site where flexible matrix boards and laser motion sensors could be sold alongside build-it-yourself weather monitoring kits and robot birds. Almost immediately, Tindie began attracting favorable attention from the indie hardware community—and then expanded from there. Today, around 600 inventors sell more than 3,000 different hardware products, which have shipped out to more than 80 countries around the world. Some customers are hobbyists like Petrone, but others are large entities like the Australian government, Google and NASA. These days, Petrone says, “NASA’s purchasing department just calls my cell phone.”

Just as Etsy became the go-to marketplace for craft creators, Tindie has become the primary hub for hardware aficionados.

The site has also gained a strong following from hard-core DIY types. Just as Etsy became the go-to marketplace for craft creators, Tindie has become the primary hub for hardware aficionados. “We are definitely part of and supportive of the maker movement,” Petrone says. “We fill the hardware side.”

An open source rolling robot Ryantech LTD on Tindie

Petrone, who stands on the board of the Open Source Hardware Association, insists that this development was not intentional but rather just happened. Whatever the reasoning, it could be a boon for hardware. Unlike software, which has been open sourced for decades and includes hundreds of thousands of projects, hardware has lagged behind the open source movement, wherein the inner workings of a program or a product are openly available for anyone to see, edit or modify. Open source software projects demonstrate the value of this approach, having led to integral creations such as Linux, the operating system that vast majority of the Internet runs on today. “The more people who know about a project and have access to it, the better it becomes,” Petrone says. “We then all benefit from that collective development.”

DIY Ghost Low Voltage Labs on Tindie

For companies and makers, the revenue model for open source hardware is still being worked out, since a person could potentially exploit an open source platform and sell it for profit. But as Arduino— a micro-controller for DIYers, and the most successful open source hardware project to date—shows, people tend to buy the $30 original version rather than the $10 copycats. “Most people want to support those who are actually contributing and putting the sweat and time into the project,” Petrone says. “You don’t get the same warm fuzzy feeling when buying a closed product as you do when you support someone who is creating an open one.”

As for Tindie sellers, monetary support has so far not been a problem. There is so much demand for the open source products sold on the site that the waiting list alone contains nearly half a million dollars’ worth of orders. For Petrone, “This has been something incredibly interesting to see because, ultimately, it’s a totally new market that doesn’t exist anywhere else.”

Tindie, however, is likely only an early example of what is to come.

“I think open hardware will start coming into its own in the next ten years,” Petrone says. “Apple’s not going to open source their products anytime soon, but Tesla could.”

This article was originally published in the October 2014 issue of Popular Science with the title, “The Etsy Of Hardware.” It has been expanded in this web version.

The Best Open Source Content Management Systems

One of the most important elements new website owners fail to give enough consideration to is in selecting the right open source content management system (CMS) for their website. Obviously some websites are put together without the inclusion of a full CMS. Yet those websites used in enterprise environments are almost always employing some kind of CMS for easy content handling. Continue reading for my recommended best CMS options.

One of the most popular CMS solutions available today is WordPress. The reason why WordPress is so popular is due to how simple it is to use. Today WordPress is easily considered to be the most popular CMS of all time.

WordPress is available both as a do it yourself installable solution to be used on your own server or can be run from a managed service like chúng tôi You can run it as is from a base installation, or add extended functionality through the use of WordPress plugins.

WordPress is widely targeted by malicious individuals who try to exploit out of date WordPress installations or those installations that are using insecure configurations. But so long as you keep things up to date and research how to harden your WordPress installation in the first place, you won’t have any issues to speak of.

Working with Drupal is usually best for those who are very comfortable with HTML, CSS and PHP. If you shine in web development, then using Drupal won’t be too difficult for you. Drupal is usually best if you’re looking into building up a database driven website that needs to be fast, highly customized (using your own skills) and provides a robust developer friendly CMS environment that can act as a blank canvas.

One way to differentiate between Drupal and WordPress, is to think of Drupal as a blank page, whereas WordPress might be a vanilla blog. Both CMS environments allow you to customize much of the user experience, whereas Drupal goes a step farther in lending itself to customize much of the backend to better suit your needs.

Drupal is best for a web developer who needs a CMS framework, but doesn’t feel like building one from scratch. Drupal is absolutely not for anyone who is looking for a simple default installation experience.

Joomla is one of the best popular CMS platforms you see all the time, yet we’re never actually aware of it. Without giving away too many names, many of the popular chain restaurants and e-commerce websites on the Web today are running with well maintained Joomla installations.

If I was to mention the one thing I love about Joomla over other open source CMS’ is its balance between ease of use and control. For example, on Joomla I can control RSS layouts, banner placements, user permissions and other important elements without using special themes or plugins. Should I find a feature not included on the default installation of Joomla, I can add it using Joomla extensions. To point out that Joomla is powerful would be an understatement.

Joomla is best for anyone looking to take deeper control of how they present their CMS web content. It’s also fantastic for anyone looking to produce a website that has e-commerce capabilities. If deeper control, customizable options and other more robust elements are interesting to you – Joomla may be the perfect CMS for your needs.

So while Joomla and others may have larger support communities, Concrete5 offers a balance between WordPress’s ease of use and Joomla’s individual page control. Concrete5 has proven popular for websites looking to produce magazine experiences and general web portals.

Concrete5 is probably best for anyone looking for drag and drop page arrangement in their CMS. While it’s possible with other CMS’ through extensions, it’s best to use this functionality in a native environment if at all possible.

I found TYPO3 to be an interesting CMS in that it seems to borrow useful elements from other CMS applications, but sets out on a path all its own. TYPO3 puts an equal amount of emphasis on standard CMS functionality and the ability for developers to build off of the CMS to customize it to their own needs.

TYPO3 also has the ability to be expanded, using extensions. However the overall control offered by a default installation reminds me a bit of Joomla. With permissions, users, deep page control, it’s a strong CMS indeed.

Another interesting element to the TYPO3 user experience is the Ajax drag and drop elements. This functionality is similar to what you might find with Concrete5. Useful for less code savvy users, but perhaps not as much for someone coming from a CMS like Drupal.

TYPO3 is a CMS best for those who are looking for a highly customizable experience, but still prefer to have the ability to control the layout of their content pages using mouse dragging. You can expand on its capabilities using extensions or get a lot out of it with a default installation.

Obviously there are countless other CMS solutions available to you out there. And I certainly encourage you to check them out. That said, I selected the ones listed here with the most critical features: extendable, secure, open source and provide decent support from their perspective communities.

M0N0Wall, An Open Source Lightweight Firewall

Manuel Kasper developed the embedded firewall software package m0n0wall back in 2002, he says, while experimenting with embedded x86-based computers. “Having just succeeded at stripping down FreeBSD enough to make it run on a Soekris net4501 board… and deploying it for use as a home firewall/NAT router, I wanted to go one step further,” he says. “I wanted a nice, web-based interface to configure it, just like the commercial firewall boxes.”

Kasper says he chose the name m0n0wall simply because “Mono” was his nickname in school. “I’m not sure why I replaced the o’s for zeros—perhaps because all domain names with normal o’s were already taken—and when I look at it now, it seems a bit silly/’31337‘—but it has become a trademark anyway,” he says.

And the system requirements have remained extremely minimal. “m0n0wall will run on almost any x86-based PC with a Pentium-compatible processor, at least 64 MB of RAM, and at least two supported network controllers,” Kasper says. “No hard disk is required; a USB flash drive, a CF card, or even a CD-ROM plus a floppy disk (for very old machines) suffice. While a common off-the-shelf PC will do, m0n0wall is especially designed for x86 based embedded computers, such as the new AMD LX based boards from PC Engines and Soekris.”

Still, Kasper admits that m0n0wall’s simplicity can also be a weakness. “If you’re looking for features such as content filtering or proxying, or if you want a firewall that can double as a print/file server or PBX, then m0n0wall won’t be a complete solution for you: it has long ago been decided that these things don’t fit in with the m0n0wall philosophy,” he says. “But that’s why there are other m0n0wall-based projects, like AskoziaPBX, FreeNAS, or pfSense.”

And being open source, Kasper says, helps in terms of both price and security. “[Users] get a firewall with a web interface that can stand up to many commercial solutions in terms of features and usability—but for free,” he says. “[And] if a bug is found, it is usually only a matter of days (sometimes hours) before a fix is released—and since all the source code is available, anyone with some FreeBSD and PHP knowledge can add new features or fix bugs.”

Kasper says m0n0wall has proven to be particularly attractive to ISPs. “The traffic shaper built into m0n0wall is used by some (usually smaller) ISPs to easily control the bandwidth usage of their clients without having to resort to command lines or expensive commercial gear,” Kasper says. “Also, I’ve heard that the captive portal built into m0n0wall is quite popular among small WISPs and individual hotspot operators, perhaps because it is so easy to deploy and, in conjunction with the other features of m0n0wall, can provide a complete solution for a hotspot access gateway.”

The most recent releases, Kasper says, have updated the base system to FreeBSD 6, improved support for new WLAN cards as well as WPA, added a SIP proxy, and added support for ISPsec tunnels to dynamic endpoints.

Support for the solution is available through m0n0wall’s forums, chat, and mailing lists. Commercial support services are also available from Oklahoma-based Centipede Networks.

Looking at the solution as a whole, Kasper says the best way to explain m0n0wall’s strengths is to look at the stability and reliability of FreeBSD. “m0n0wall, owing to the fact that it’s based on FreeBSD, inherits those qualities,” he says.

This story originally appeared on ISP-Planet.

50 Open Source Replacements For Windows Xp

Microsoft officially ended support for Windows XP on April 8, 2014. That means the company is no longer patching newly discovered security vulnerabilities in the operating system, and people who continue to use it are opening themselves up to security risks.

However, according to NetMarketShare, more than a quarter of all PCs (27.69 percent) were still running Windows XP in March of this year.

Why would people continue using a twelve-year-old operating system that would put them at risk?

No doubt, many are home users who simply aren’t very technology savvy and/or may not have the desire or the money to upgrade to a newer version of Windows. Some probably have older, underpowered PCs that can’t run Windows 7 or 8. And others have specific software—often custom business applications—that only runs on Windows XP.

Fortunately, the open source community has free operating systems that meet the needs of users in all of these situations. This month we’ve put together a list of 50 different applications that can replace Windows XP. It’s organized into several different categories. Those that are easiest for beginners to use come first, followed by lightweight operating systems that can run on old hardware, then operating systems that are particularly tailored for business users and open source operating systems that aren’t based on Linux. The list ends with a few applications that aren’t complete operating systems but do allow users to run their existing XP software from Linux.

Before we get to the list itself, here’s a some quick background for Windows XP users who aren’t familiar with Linux or open source software. Linux is an operating system that anyone can use free of charge. In addition, anyone can see the source code for Linux and modify it however they like. Because anyone can tweak it, it comes in thousands of different versions, which are known as “distributions.” Different Linux distributions use different interfaces or “desktops,” which determine how the operating system looks on the screen. Unlike Windows, Linux distributions generally come with lots of free applications already built in, so users don’t have to pay extra for office productivity software, security software, games or other applications.

1. Linux Mint

Many people consider Linux Mint to be among the most intuitive operating systems for Windows XP users. It supports several different desktop interfaces, including Cinnamon, which users can configure to look and feel a lot like XP.

2. Ubuntu

Very easy to use, Ubuntu is likely the most widely used Linux distribution in the world. The desktop version offers speed, security, thousands of built-in applications and compatibility with most peripherals.

3. Zorin OS

Built specifically to attract former Windows users, Ubuntu-based Zorin is probably the Linux distribution that’s the most similar to Windows. It includes a unique “Look Changer” that switches the desktop to look like Windows 7, XP, Vista, Ubuntu Unity, Mac OS X or GNOME 2, and it includes WINE and PlayOnLinux to allow users to keep using their Windows software.

4. Robolinux

Also similar to Windows, Robolinux promises to allow users to run all their Windows XP and 7 software without making themselves vulnerable to malware. It also includes more than 30,000 open source applications.

5. StartOS

Formerly known as YLMF, the interface for StartOS looks an awful lot like Windows XP. It’s managed by a group of Chinese developers, so the website is in Chinese. However, English versions of the OS are available.

6. Pinguy OS

According to the Pinguy website, “PinguyOS is very much designed for people who are new to the Linux world; many people coming from both a Windows or a Mac background will find plenty of familiar features along with some new ones that aren’t available in either Windows or Mac.” It’s based on Ubuntu and uses the Gnome-Shell desktop.


Popular with new Linux users, MEPIS aims at providing a Linux distribution that’s very stable and very easy to use. It comes with hundreds of applications preinstalled and you can easily dual-boot it alongside Windows so that you can continue using XP software.

8. Antergos

Previously known as Cinnarch, Antergos is based on Arch Linux, which is popular with hard-core open source users, but Antergos much easier for beginners to use than Arch. It comes with a graphical installer that allows the user to choose from among several interfaces, including some that look quite a bit like XP.

9. Manjaro

Like Antergos, Manjaro aims to be a more user-friendly version of Arch. It comes with desktop environments, software management applications and media codecs pre-installed so users can get right to work after installing it.

10. PCLinuxOS

Like many other OSes on this list, PCLinuxOS was designed with usability in mind. It can run from a LiveCD, meaning you can try it out while still keeping Windows XP installed on your PC.

11. Edubuntu

For those looking to replace Windows XP on a PC primarily used by kids, Edubuntu is an excellent choice. It’s based on Ubuntu (and supported by Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu), so it’s very user-friendly. Plus, it adds plenty of software tailored for use by schools or home users with children.

12. Mageia

Forked from Mandrake (which was later renamed Mandriva), Mageia is a community-driven Linux distribution with a good reputation for being beginner-friendly. Because it’s updated very frequently, it tends to include more recent versions of software packages, and it has excellent support for several different languages.

13. OpenMandriva

14. Kubuntu

Kubuntu’s goal is to “make your PC friendly,” and it’s fairly easy for new Linux users to figure out. It combines Ubuntu and the KDE desktop and includes plenty of built-in software, like a web browser, an office suite, media apps and more.

15. Netrunner

Netrunner is based on Kubuntu, plus some interface modifications to make it even more user friendly and some extra codecs to make it easier to play media files. The project also offers a second version of the same OS based on Manjaro.

16. Kwheezy

17. Point Linux

Also based on Debian, Point Linux uses the Mate desktop, which should feel comfortable to most Windows XP users. It aims to be a “fast, stable and predictable” desktop operating system.

Update the detailed information about The Cloud Vs. Open Source on the website. We hope the article's content will meet your needs, and we will regularly update the information to provide you with the fastest and most accurate information. Have a great day!