Free Software is Supported

There are in fact many resources available for obtaining help for free software. People find that these resources are often more accessible and have a faster response time than what can be obtained from vendors of nonfree software.

“I have never had problems with stability or lack of features, rather, it's only been once that I've ever seen a program that didn't have a feature I might want, and upon suggesting it to the authors, it was incorporated within two or three months.”

David Allen
Software Developer

“As we discovered here at CESCOM, there were quite a lot of resources available for us when we encountered a problem—be it a web page or a HOW-TO document. At times, I even started up my IRC (Internet Relay Chat—online discussion forums) program and talked with people … This has proven to be a very valuable resource for me—I can get help almost right away …”

Jean-Francois Gadoury
Internet Software Developer

“I could no longer imagine having to wait many months for the technical support departments of proprietary software companies to fix the problems caused by our use of very recent hardware in large but unusual combinations.”

John Hayward-Warburton
Co-producer “Ads Infinitum” and “TV Offal”
BBC, England

“We have found GNU software to be better supported and of better quality than any proprietary software that we've tried.”

M. Carling
CIO, Axis Personal Trainers and Spa

There are also companies which have entered into the free software arena to offer support services:

“Companies like Cygnus and Cyclic are doing a great job at filling the support gaps. I think there's more of this business model on the way.”

Wade Stebbings
Computer Consultant

“I have had better support from the [free] software community than from Microsoft, DEC, and Gateway. Often I have had questions answered online in under ten minutes.”

William S. Yerazunis, Ph.D.
MERL—Mitsubishi Electric Research Laboratory