Feeds

Microsoft welcomes UK govt open source policy

Yes, really

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Intelligent flash storage arrays

ComputerWire: IT Industry Intelligence

Microsoft Corp has given a warm welcome to the UK government's recent open source software policy statement, indicating a further softening of the company's approach to its open source rivals.

Redmond, Washington-based Microsoft appears to have a growing respect for the competitive threat posed by open source software, and has given a broad thumbs-up to the UK Office of Government Commerce's report, which promotes the use of open source software in local and national government institutions and public-sector organizations.

"We welcome the policy statement in that it clearly states what the policy is," said Mary-Anne Novitzkas, shared source manager for Microsoft UK. "Nothing's really changed. It's quite a neutral policy but it means that we can now compete on merit and value." While Microsoft's response to the policy may be the now-expected "we value competition" response, it has also been helped by the OGC's softly-softly approach to open source.

Prompted by the European Commission's "eEurope - An Information Society for all" initiative, the OGC's open source software policy statement lays out the UK government's approach to the use of open source software. While the policy does give some credibility to the use of open source software in government projects, it stops well short of the positive discrimination being planned or implemented in other European countries.

The Norwegian government recently decided not to renew a Microsoft Select 5.0 license agreement in order to promote the use of open source software. In comparison, the furthest OGC report goes is to state that the "UK government will explore further the possibilities of using OSS as the default exploitation route for government funded R&D software."

Other policies include: open source software being considered alongside proprietary software with contracts awarded on a value for money basis; the use of interoperability products only if they support open standards and specifications; an attempt to avoid vendor lock-in to proprietary products; and that the government will consider obtaining full rights to bespoke software code or customizations of commercial of the shelf software where it achieves the best value for money.

© ComputerWire

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
UNIX greybeards threaten Debian fork over systemd plan
'Veteran Unix Admins' fear desktop emphasis is betraying open source
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
Redmond top man Satya Nadella: 'Microsoft LOVES Linux'
Open-source 'love' fairly runneth over at cloud event
Chrome 38's new HTML tag support makes fatties FIT and SKINNIER
First browser to protect networks' bandwith using official spec
Admins! Never mind POODLE, there're NEW OpenSSL bugs to splat
Four new patches for open-source crypto libraries
Torvalds CONFESSES: 'I'm pretty good at alienating devs'
Admits to 'a metric ****load' of mistakes during work with Linux collaborators
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.