As the Software Supply Chain Shifts, Enterprise Open Source Programs Ramp Up


Today’s software supply chain is fundamentally different than it was only a few years ago, and open source programs at large enterprises are helping to drive that trend. According to Sonatype’s 2016 State of the Software Supply Chain enterprises are both turning to existing open source projects to decrease the amount of code they have to write, and increasingly creating their own open source tools.

Countless organizations have rolled out professional, in-house programs focused on advancing open source and encouraging its adoption. Some of the companies doing so may surprise you. Here are a few such companies that may not be top-of-mind when thinking about engagement with open source:

Walmart’s Open Source Mojo Spreads Out. Is Walmart a major player in open source? It absolutely is, and the company is expanding its open source engagement in 2017. The company’s Walmart Labs division, located in Silicon Valley, has released a slew of open source projects, including a notable project called Electrode, which is a product of Walmart’s migration to a React/Node.js platform. It gives developers templated code to build universal React apps that incorporate modules that developers can leverage to add functionality to Node apps. It’s also a key part of how Walmart’s site runs, and you can believe that that site runs at scale.

Additionally, after more than two years of development and testing within Walmart, the company has announced that OneOps is available to the open source community. If you have any type of cloud deployment, take note. According to Walmart: “OneOps is a cloud management and application lifecycle management platform that developers can use to both develop and launch new products faster, and more easily maintain them throughout their entire lifecycle. OneOps enables developers to code their products in a hybrid, multi-cloud environment. This means they can test and switch between different cloud providers to take advantage of better pricing, technology and scalability – without being locked into one cloud provider.”

General Electric? Yes, General Electric. Odds are that General Electric isn’t the first company that you think of when it comes to moving the open source needle, but GE is actually a  powerful player in open source. GE Software has an “Industrial Dojo” run in collaboration with the Cloud Foundry Foundation  to strengthen its efforts to solve the world’s biggest industrial challenges. According to GE: “The Cloud Foundry Dojo program allows software developers to immerse themselves in open source projects to quickly learn the inner workings of the core technology and the unique agile development environment, as well as recommended methodologies for contributing code. GE also works with the Cloud Foundry community to develop and contribute open source code to the Cloud Foundry Foundation that will route all industrial messaging protocols.

Telecoms are Opening Up. A number of telecom companies are rapidly increasing their engagement with the open source community. Ericsson, for example, regularly contributes projects and is a champion of several key open source initiatives. You can browse through the company’s open source hub here. The company is also one of the most active telecom-focused participants in the effort to advance open NFV and other open technologies that can eliminate historically proprietary components in telecom technology stacks. Ericsson works directly with The Linux Foundation on these efforts, and engineers and developers are encouraged to interface with the open source community.

Other organizations in the telecom space who are deeply involved with NFV and open source projects include AT&T, Bloomberg LP, China Mobile, Deutsche Telekom, NTT Group, SK Telekom and Verizon.

In a previous post, we also looked at growing enterprise open source programs from Microsoft, Netflix, Facebook, and Google. Many other organizations have active internal open source programs, and we will provide additional coverage of the most notable examples.

Learn more in the Fundamentals of Professional Open Source Management training course from The Linux Foundation. Download a sample chapter now.