Communities are more creative than companies

Customers come to Red Hat for the high quality of innovative open source solutions–and to avoid the risk of doing it all themselves.

Years ago, we put our trust in open source: a collaborative, collective way to create and constantly improve software. And we’ve built a strong reputation for critical innovation, world-class support, and deep open source expertise.

For us, open source is a development model and a business model. It shapes our business practices, and corporate culture. It is the ethos that guides our every move.

Open source made us what we are, and how that happened is a great story.

Learn more about Red Hat and communities

The open source way

Open source is the best way to create technology.

In an open exchange, we bring together the breakthroughs of the past to build something new and useful. Creation is always an act of collaboration.

When people are free to share problems and solve them together, they form communities. And open communities of purpose, practice, and inquiry are the key players in technology innovation today.

Constantly improving on what was built before is the open source way.

Open source principles



Connecting unlikely combinations of new and old ideas increases the likelihood of experiencing a meaningful breakthrough, especially when it comes to solving very complex problems.



When many voices are heard in an open forum, a common vision can emerge. A diverse community with a shared purpose ensures that the most important problems are being addressed with pragmatic, effective, and lasting solutions.



Everyone has access to the same information when the source code is available and accessible. Decisions might not always be made by consensus, but they are always made in the open. Because everyone has a chance to understand and contribute, broad acceptance is much more likely.



While the best ideas can come from anywhere, the people who care the most and work the hardest tend to rule the day. Not every great idea is immediately workable. Open source communities are not debating societies or think tanks. They exist to get work done. The winning idea is not always the most elegant or creative, it is the one that works best.



Communities are formed around a common purpose. A global, open community can create beyond the capabilities of any single individual. Communities share work, multiply effort, and compound progress. Self-organizing open source communities are governed by every participant who cares enough to do so.

The Red Hat way

Red Hat is an incorporation of open source ideals.

Open source is our strategic advantage. It is both why and how we exist. All customer and shareholder value grows out of the technology, expertise, and wisdom we gain from being a part of the open source ecosystem.

Red Hat benefits from open source, but we do not just feed on it. We are not parasites, we are participants. We are catalysts and a major creative force. We cultivate projects, nurture collaborative environments, and when necessary, protect the open source ecosystem as a whole for the good of all.

We do this because we know that the best way for us to win is to create more winners. And we create more winners by contributing  directly to community projects, acquiring useful proprietary code and liberating it, and by fighting for the legal right to share and collaborate openly.

If it helps our customers and makes open source stronger, we do it.


Learn more about our story by reading The Book of Red Hat