Free Open Source Software for Business Intelligence


Free Open Source Software (FOSS) has recently grown, becoming a significant part of the IT market. We use the word “FOSS” to refer to software under a license which grants the right to access the source code and use, study, and change the software. We must not confuse FOSS with “non-commercial software”: antonyms of FOSS are “closed” and “proprietary” software. The first purpose of this paper is to maintain an unbiased position. The analysis begins with a general overview of the FOSS world and then moves focus to business intelligence: during the last years, several tools have finally entered the market, becoming actual competitors to proprietary software. Although FOSS still needs to grow, a large number of companies are already deploying or at least testing some FOSS solutions. In addition, the research world has shown interest providing several market surveys and software analyses. After illustrating the selection criteria used, the paper describes the most interesting FOSS tools for each of the following business intelligence subcategories: database management systems (DBMS), data integration tools, analytical tools and business intelligence suites. In addition, the FOSS data mining solutions RapidMiner and KNIME are evaluated and tested on a set of data. Although the two programs are not as widespread as the proprietary data mining tools, they can be considered actual competitors to the proprietary software

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