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Lavenya Dilip

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Free software no longer a stigma, new research reveals

CIOs candidly reveal their growing dependency on free software

Over the years, free software has had a difficult time overcoming the stigma of automatically being branded as low quality. The recession seems to have changed all that as CIOs have had to implement aggressive cost cutting measures. According to new research commissioned by GLOBAL GRAPHICS, developer of edocument and printing software, today’s high level technology executives have no qualms about revealing their new found dependency on free software.

"One thing that was surprising was the openness of CIOs admitting that their enterprises are using free software across the enterprise," said Gary Fry, CEO of Global Graphics.

Four hundred CIOs participated in this survey from organizations with over 1000 employees across the US and the UK .The survey found that 51 per cent of the large organizations will deploy more enterprise-wide free software in 2010 .

The trend towards free software is partly attributed to the pressure on enterprise IT budgets as two thirds of the CIOs interviewed admitted that their budget will not be getting any facelifts in 2010 and in some cases will dwindle even more. Half the CIOs were planning on tackling the situation by planning enterprise-level implementations of free software this year.

The research also revealed that three quarters (76 per cent) of large organizations already use free software across the enterprise. In fact over half (54 per cent) of large organizations use more than 10 different free software products. The most deployed free software is Adobe Reader which is used by 78 per cent of organizations. Java Runtime Environment and Adobe Flash Player come second and third. QuickTime, OpenOffice, Google Docs, Skype and Microsoft Save as PDF are all in the top 10 most used free software applications. On the other hand the software that the CIOs are looking to eliminate the most is first Adobe Acrobat followed by Microsoft Office.

The full report is available at


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Lavenya Dilip was responsible for Marketing at Green Rack Systems.