Open-source vs Proprietary Systems

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Open-source software such as WordPress or Drupal promotes collaboration and innovation with an extensive network. Here are just a few of the many reasons we recommend open-source solutions instead of proprietary: ownership, customization, no on-going fees, support, and functionality. 


Open-source solutions offer more system ownership compared to proprietary solutions because they do not tie you to one vendor. If our clients decide to further enhance their Drupal website after launch, for example, they can do so either through Upanup or another Drupal shop.


Open source solutions are forward-thinking, fully customizable, and can easily meet future needs. Websites can be tailored to reflect each client’s unique needs—not the other way around, as is the case with many proprietary systems. An important aspect of custom website development are the different modules and APIs (application program interfaces) that allow for a wide range of functions and connections. In addition to having a website that is completely customizable, open-source solutions set a strong foundation for incorporating integrations in the future (e.g. view our recent PerfectMind integration project with North Vancouver Recreation and Culture). Whereas customizing proprietary systems often entail upgrading to a higher 'tier' for a subscription-based feature or waiting for enough other customers to also want the feature before it's built (causing delays).

No on-going fees

In the spirit of open source, there are no licenses or subscription fees for the CMS. Functionality is achieved by utilizing a vast library of components built and refined by thousands of Drupal developers—including custom modules we have built for past clients. These modules are free and can be used on any site, from a large high-profile international business-to-business site to a small government town site. For example, check out the case study for the website redesign and development project with the City of Penticton on Drupal 8. 


Open-source solutions like Drupal are global solutions, with 1,000s of supporters, contributors (including Upanup) and adopters. These solutions are receiving notable support from high levels of government, such as the European Commission and the Australian Government Department of Finance to large corporations in the private sector, including Google Summer of Code, Pfizer and General Electric. Open-source users will have access to worldwide support, not only a single vendor. 

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One of Drupal’s biggest strengths is in its scalability and extensibility. It sets the standard for affordable future updates and integrations, meaning new features and functionality can be easily integrated as needed—without requiring a full rebuild. As new digital trends emerge, open-source solutions have the ability to meet the ever-evolving needs of users.