Linux Grabs 75% of the $2 billion Open Source Investment; Firefox Share...

The Linux operating system is the recipient of 75% of all vendor investment in open source software, according to a new report from the Harvard Business School (CBR reports), which also indicates that vendor support for open source is primarily motivated by boosting their proprietary offerings.

The preliminary draft report suggests that $2 billion was invested by vendors in open source software between 1995 and 2005:

  1. Linux : $1.5 billion
  2. Firefox: $317 million 
  3. OpenOffice.org: $76 million
  4. MySQL database: $48 million
  5. PHP scripting language: $24 million
  6. Tcl scripting language: $15 million
  7. JBoss middleware stack: $10 million

"If vendors were altruistically motivated to contribute to OSS projects, we would expect to see an even distribution of investments across projects," noted the reports authors: Marco Iansiti, professor of business administration at the Harvard Business School, and Gregory Richards, managing director of Keystone Strategy Inc.

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