Munich signs off on Open Source project

Linux and LibreOffice now humming away on 15,000 Bavarian desktops


The German city of Munich has declared that its famous move to open source software is over and a success.

Munich famously decided to go open source back in 2003, citing a desire to be independent of big, bad, vendor-land and save a few Euros along the way. To that end the city decided to adopt Linux on the desktop and server, open-source productivity tools and free software everywhere.

A decade later, page 47 of this hefty council PDF declares that the system has received a “project acceptance certificate” and that “ the IT project is formally completed and … in regular operation.”

The council's facts and figures page for the project says that as of May 2013 “15,000 jobs use free software such as Thunderbird and Firefox , 15,000 jobs use OpenOffice.org and the WollMux” while “14,000 jobs use the LiMux client”.

That page is dated May 2013 but may be inaccurate: this announcement and many media reports suggest Munich switched from OpenOffice to LibreOffice in 2012.

WollMux is Munich's set of extensions to whichever office suite it;s now using and enables easier customisation of documents. LiMux is a client tailored to Munich council's needs.

The project has always been a poster child for the open source community. Its formal completion and the fact it has been declared a success will doubtless be most welcome.

Several other projects around the world will rival or exceed its desktop count, and of course Linux is now an omnipresent server operating system in almost every sector. ®

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