80% of organizations increased their use of open source software over the last 12 months, according to Perforce Software and the Open Source Initiative.
Four out of five companies rely on OSS for a wide range of business-critical applications including data and database management, containers and container orchestration, and DevOps and SDLC tooling.
The report reveals, however, that some obstacles persist. In every technology category surveyed, organizations repeatedly cited lack of personnel with expertise as one of the top challenges.
“Clearly, more technical support is needed for open source technologies, as personnel experience and proficiency is highly ranked again this year as a support concern across organizations regardless of size,” said Javier Perez, Chief OSS Evangelist at Perforce Software.
“In-house support of OSS requires expert-level knowledge of not just one technology, but multiple technologies that form software stacks,” Perez continued.
“This report illuminates why open source skills continue to be in high demand,” said Rod Cope, CTO at Perforce Software.
“Open source communities are not timebound by any SLAs, which means you could be waiting days or even weeks to get technical support if there are skill shortages in your organization,” Cope added.
Maintaining security policies and compliance and keeping up with updates and patches also pose difficulties, especially for organizations that have yet to migrate off end-of-life (EOL) software.
For example, the report shows that 15% of all organizations (and 20% of large organizations) are still running AngularJS — the exact same percentage as reported the previous year — even though AngularJS has been EOL since December 31, 2021.
Despite these challenges, the report indicates a positive trend toward open-source strategy and maturity.
35% of survey respondents have OSS security and compliance policies; 28% have legal teams familiar with open source licensing; and more than 25% of organizations in most industries generate a Software Bill of Materials (SBOM), an important first step toward greater security and transparency.
These numbers suggest that more companies are transitioning from being consumers of OSS to active participants. In fact, 37% say they are contributing to open-source projects and organizations.
The final question on the survey addressed future priorities for OSS adoption. When asked to rank technologies in relation to their desire to implement them in the next 18 months, survey respondents chose AI/ML/DL technologies as the most desirable, edging out Kubernetes and Kubernetes Operators by 1%.
“Demand for services powered by AI/ML/DL technologies is exploding,” said Stefano Maffulli, Executive Director of OSI.
“The vast amounts of data these applications ingest give rise to serious implications when it comes to licensing and privacy in this ‘growth at all costs’ era. The Open Source Initiative is researching the AI/ML/DL space to help enterprises and individuals get clear definitions of their rights and obligations when it comes to data and AI systems,” Maffulli concluded.