Does "OPEN SOURCE" Mean That Version You Just Downloaded Is Authentic?

Posted by Les Trachtman, EE, JD, MBA on Mar 7, 2018 12:45:00 PM

Have you ever gotten a generic medication in lieu of the name brand counterpart? There is an actual incentive for making this choice. You do this because it’s cheaper. However, what is the incentive for obtaining the generic version of a free open source product? Well, when you consider that if the version is not authentic you lose the quality code – there really is no benefit. When downloading Horos, always go straight to the source and get the authentic product. As always, it's free.

What is FOSS?

FOSS or Free Open Source Software is a great way to obtain highly functional software at low or no cost.  By its nature, the source code (programming code) underlying the software application is freely available to anyone who wishes to use it. Although there are some restrictions on what can and can’t be done with publishing the source code, anyone is free to modify the code.  Usually these modifications are routed back to a single curator who then tests, approves and republishes the software.  However, there are sometimes programmers who make their own changes and publish the software on their own.  And while this is usually perfectly legal, it may not serve the purposes of unsuspecting users who believe what they downloaded is authentic.

Download Horos

Users Like You Make Horos Unique

With Horos, we encourage the community to modify and improve the code.  Harnessing the power of “crowd-sourcing” the program’s development, we find experts around the world who are able to develop some of the best medical image reading and viewing features as well as functions available. And when most programmers do this, they provide the code back to the Horos Project for validation and incorporation into the most current version of the code.  This causes a constant stream of improvements in the operation and functionality of the code. You benefit from the accumulation of that worldwide expertise into a cumulative version of the code that is curated, tested and authenticated.

Avoid Fakes

To be sure you are getting that benefit, you should be sure to download Horos only from the site.  There are just too many things that can go wrong if you download code from an unfamiliar site.  Among other things to be concerned with, if Horos is downloaded from a site other than the authentic Horos Project website, you may not be getting the latest version. The version you download may be incompatible with your prior (or future) version. In addition, you never know if an unsuspecting programmer may have introduced a bug that will affect the operation of your systems.  Or perhaps worse, you really don’t know if something devious has been purposefully introduced into the program that has the potential to corrupt your system, impact your hardware, or compromise the integrity of your private information.

Final Thought

So despite the “open” in open source, please be sure that you know what you are getting.  If you have a question about the authenticity of your software downloads, be sure to always get your new versions from the source:

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