Home HASLab Projects Success Stories CROSS
Document Actions


An Infrastructure for Certification and Re-engineering of Open Source Software

Over the past decade, the Open Source Software (OSS) phenomenon has had a global impact on the way software systems and software-based services are developed, distributed and deployed. Widely acknowledged benefits of OSS include reliability, low development and maintenance costs, as well as rapid code turnover. Linux distributions, Apache and MySQL, serve, among many other examples, as a testimony to its success and resilience.

Companies become aware that integrating OSS into commercial products (made available by liberal OSS licences) reduces development costs while offering high-quality, extensively tested components. Furthermore, Governments become aware of growing dependence on proprietary formats and software in their administration, and regard OSS as a warranty of technological independence (which turns out to be a strategic advantage, mainly in the developing world).

However, state-of-the-art OSS, by the very nature of its open, unconventional, distributed development model, makes software quality assessment, let alone full certification, particularly hard to achieve and raises important challenges both from the technical/methodological and the managerial points of view.

The goal of the CROSS project was to strengthen the role of open source software (OSS) in the European IT sector. Open source software is increasingly important for public and industrial organisations, but its quality can be very hard to measure. This makes it risky to use it. This risk could be substantially reduced if there were appropriate standards, supported by analysis tools, for certifying such software. Developing such tools, making them widely available to the OSS community, and, in the long term, contributing to the creation of an international certification authority for open source software, were the general goals of the research context for this project.

Starting Date: March 15, 2010

Project team: Maria João Frade, Jorge Sousa Pinto, João Alexandre Saraiva, Luís Soares Barbosa and José Creissac Campos

Project Website: CROSS



HASLab +351 22 209 4000