If Windows from now on were made Open Source with source code, wouldn't it help Microsoft?

Brass Contributor

If Microsoft Windows were made Open Source wouldn't that be great? Visual Studio is open source as everybody knows. So if Windows 10 would follow suit then a whole new era of Softwares and Apps would emerge out from the backdrop for Windows. Don't you think that?


Please note that I meant this question to be an open-ended one. So everybody could pitch in their valuable thoughts about Windows 10 and about the future of Windows going free and licensed under Open Source Licensing.  Microsoft has other great products. MS Office, Azure, etc. It's not that they would not be benefitted from this other great software by selling them.


What is your opinion? Please, I am dying to want future Windows licensed under Open Source Licensing.


If you look at Linux OS (Debian or others) which is licensed under Open Source boasts for over 1,00,000 packages. They have regular security and bug fixes.


So can't Microsoft do the same? Now Windows has hundreds of thousands of viruses and comes with bare minimum software. So wouldn't it help Microsoft if Windows were free with the source code from now on?

7 Replies


I know where this is coming from and your concern is correct, Windows 10 has had lots of problems and made everyone angry at some point during the last 5 years since its release.

from a financial and commercial standpoint, It's not good for Microsoft to open source it, it's their product and they can't just give it out for free.
Linux has been open source for 20-30 years and look at their market share now. even with thousands of distros, their market share on desktop is still super low, they don't even count.

Microsoft's problem is Not the inability to create a perfect OS like Windows XP, Windows 7 and probably Windows 8.1 (if we ignore the UI).
their problem is that they are relying on Insiders to fix their OS rather than doing it themselves just like before Windows 10 came out.

take a look at my post and you'll see what I mean:

Windows has a lot more programs and compatible hardware than any other OS in the world. Microsoft has no problem making a perfect OS. In my opinion, it's mismanagement that is hurting the company right now, and not everywhere though, only on Windows part. they are pretty successful on Azure, Office 365, Xbox and hundreds of other services they represent.

@HotCakeX  Thank you for your reply. Can I say kindly something to your reply?


Do you know why Linux doesn't appeal most of the market? I am not talking against Linux. I work on both Linux and Microsoft.


For example, I use Debian distro. And the learning curve is kind of high.


And another thing that comes to mind is that because of copyright licensing issues, not all device drivers are compatible. Microsoft has an upper hand in P&P or Plug and Play on this.


And finally, don't get me wrong or I am not trashing windows but when I tried to network between windows 10 and Debian there was no easy way out. So windows made it harder to collaborate with Linux. And that kind of hurts me.


Still, I believe Microsoft is trying hard to fix everything. And I pray it works and finally pays off. 

best response confirmed by Adrian1595 (Brass Contributor)



Of course, it's a discussion


well it appears that you're looking at it from only a single viewpoint. the reason for your suggestion for Windows to become open source is just to be more compatible with Linux.

you asked: "Do you know why Linux doesn't appeal most of the market?"
and you also answered: "the learning curve is kind of high." which is one reason.

"when I tried to network between windows 10 and Debian there was no easy way out. So windows made it harder to collaborate with Linux. "

about networking, I could argue that Linux actually made it harder to work with Windows.

There is nothing to trash Windows with anyway. once could however trash the mismanagement and those people in charge. otherwise, Windows developers working at Microsoft are without a doubt the best, they only do what they are told to do. if one CEO decided to dismantle whole Windows test team and caused problem time to time with some hardware drivers then it's not the fault of Windows nor is the fault of the developers.

I've had my own experience with Linux too. but as a Windows user, it could also hurt me that apple made osx the way it is now which is hard to implement with Windows ecosystem.
you see, the fact is every OS has made it harder for other parties.
apple is the worst of all. Linux could be in the middle and Microsoft has been working very hard to remove the restrictions with other platforms.
the universal powrshell, Bash for Windows, WSL etc.


Here comes the good part:

Microsoft even makes a Linux OS for there cloud and allows all the others on it too. . They have Linux in Window store. They contribute to the Linux community and donate lots of money too it and are gold members of the Linux foundation . They even on the Linux private list where they talk about security issues in private because Microsoft makes Linux too now. They do more for Linux than some of distros that just bottom feed off other distros ..they also own github were we do a lot of Linux development on .It's not the 1990s no more when they hated each other ;)

@HotCakeX I have one last question though.


Do you think GNU (Gnu No Unix) President Richard Stallman's idea about bringing freedom to software an impossible idea? He believes in GPLv3 Licensing (Gnu Public Licensing).


Do you think software should be like so when someone buys a tv from the market they can modify it, change it and resell it?


Is that wrong to think like that? Because one bought the tv with full worth.


But in the case of software, they have to provide the source code of the software and license. Too. So the next person can do the same.


I think it's respectable everyone has different beliefs but there are some dark areas in that idea, but for example if developers were to develop software and write code for free then what would their source of income be?
like they put so much time of their life learning programming, but in today's world, what good would that do for them if not generate income to feed their families and children?
I believe in free market and reasonable prices where people like programmers and developers can thrive and get paid for what they do just like any other jobs in the world.

in the case of TV like you said, I think it would be good to let the TV owner apply custom modifications to that TV and its firmware/software, for personal use, but not to resell the modified software and mass reproduce it under the name of a different brand.

@HotCakeX You are right that a programmer works so hard to get a degree or certificate and need money to feed children and family in exchange for selling their software.


I have an inquisitive mind. Then how is that Linux software developers are having a steady and self content income? Can you kindly enlighten me on that? For example, Net worth of Linux founder is not even close to Microsoft founder. But Linux founder is happy with himself.


And if the developers earn money through software upgrade and software debugging and fix, wouldn't that count as an income? It's just my opinion.


Please don't mind. Or take it personally. Don't you think a software developer should earn exactly the amount of money that they need not more than that? I am also a software developer. I earned my certificate with a lot of hard work. But right now I am on limited income, live a simple life and made all my software GPLv3 or open source on GitHub. I am completely happy where I am and where I will go. So just wondering?


People are different, that's all I can say ^^ there is not a single rule as to how everyone must live their lives, no right way

I also don't think one can say someone is happy in his/her life that easily. there are even husbands and wives that might have lived together for a very long time and still don't know each other 100%..

I'm not sure, In my opinion (and experience) if the software is free then the patches and bug fixes will be free as well but I could be wrong

Oh don't worry, not at all,

well, I think nowadays, due to software piracy, developers could earn a lot more than they are now, but no one should set a limit on their income, maybe that happens in communist countries (like the Old Soviet Union).
it's very good that you're happy with your life