A survey of 959 IT leaders published this week by Red Hat finds increased reliance on and adoption of open source software is now being driven by perceived higher quality as much as it is cost concerns.
The survey finds higher quality of software (33%) was the top reason they chose open source, followed by lower total costs of ownership (30%) and better security (29%).
Gordon Haff, a technology evangelist for Red Hat, said the survey makes it clear that open source adoption is now being driven from the top-down as well as the bottom-up in most organizations. What’s changed is that open source software is now being used more broadly as more organizations appreciate how open source approaches to building software not only lower costs but also improve overall quality.
The survey identifies the top three use cases for employing open source software to be IT infrastructure modernization (60%), application development (53%) and DevOps (52%).
As part of that shift, 56% of respondents said they plan to increase usage of containers over the next 12 months. In fact, on average respondents said cloud-native applications already make up 25% of their portfolio, compared to an average of 36% for cloud-enabled applications and 39% for legacy applications. The combination of cloud-native and cloud-enabled applications (61%) already outnumber legacy applications (39%).
Over the next two years, 47% of respondents plan to either modernize (17%), rearchitect as cloud-enabled (16%) or rearchitect as cloud-native (14%) their legacy applications. Another 16% said they would sunset or decommission those applications.
Overall, the survey finds there has been a marked shift away from proprietary software. Only 42% said that more than half of the software they use today is proprietary, down from 55% a year ago. Two years from now only 32% said they expect proprietary software to account for more than half their portfolio. On average, respondents said 36% of their organization’s software is open source, which in two years is expected to increase to 44% in two years. A total of 77% said they would increase usage of open source software over the next 12 months.
However, barriers to adoption of open source software remain. Security of the code (38%), level of support (37%), compatibility (34%) and lack of internal skills (33%) were all cited as ongoing issues.
The top three areas in terms of infrastructure where enterprise open source solutions are being used today are security (52%), cloud management tools (51%), database (49%) and big data analytics (47%). A total of 83% said open source has been instrumental in their organization’s ability to take advantage of cloud architectures. Almost two-thirds (63%) said they have a hybrid cloud infrastructure environment today. Among the 37% that don’t, more than half (54%) plan to have a hybrid cloud infrastructure environment within the next 24 months.
It’s apparent that open source software is now everywhere. The real challenge now is finding a way to manage it all.