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Linux code worth USD 10.8bn

by xavier last modified 2009-01-14 16:23

The most recent version of Fedora would have cost a conventional software company USD 10.8bn to develop, according to the Linux Foundation. Taking Linux as an example, this article highlights the economic impact and benefit of Open Source Software development model.

Based on an article by: VNUnet UK - October 2008

The act of simply writing the Linux kernel alone would run up to USD 1.4bn in development costs, the Foundation claimed.

The open source nature of the operating system has allowed some 1,000 developers at 100 different companies to contribute to every kernel update. In the past two years alone, the Foundation estimates that 3,200 developers and 200 companies have contributed to the Linux kernel.

'Companies participating in the Linux economy share research and development costs with their partners and competitors,' read the report. 'This spreading of development burden among individuals and companies has resulted in a large and efficient ecosystem and unheralded software innovation.'

The study is an update of a 2002 report which at the time placed the development costs of a Linux distribution at USD 1.2bn based on the per-line of code cost model. The updated report calculated the cost for developing the 204,500,046 lines of code for Fedora 9 on the average US programmer's salary of USD 75,662.