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OSOR.EU: Open Source Observatory and Repository

OSOR.EU logo

The OSOR project has implemented a repository and collaborative development environment, or forge, targeting specifically European public sector organizations. To ensure effective collaboration among Public Administrations across multiple Member States, the project is also providing an information point that includes guidelines, news and case studies related to open source. The platform has been designed in such a way that it can be integrated with other services/solutions such as repositories that exist at a national level. The guidelines and recommendations issued for this project help the creation, set up and maintenance of the OSOR technical platform and service. Furthermore, technical, business and legal support for the collaboration of administrations using open source software are provided through the OSOR.

Last update: August 2009

What is OSOR.EU?

OSOR is an acronym standing for “Open Source Observatory and Repository” for European public administrations and it can be divided in two major components:

The Information Platform, targeted at public administrations provides news, guidance, links, contacts, etc.

The repository or Collaboration Development Environment is a library where software (source and object code), documentation and knowledge is easily accessible according to a specific public sector taxonomy (or logical classification in multiple European languages).

The platform has been designed and built on a state of the art high availability cluster network in order to provide complete reliability to its users, with an availability of 99.9% of uptime.

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“Promote the spread of good practice and encourage the development of innovative telematic solutions in public administrations.”

The objective of the IDABC programme is to identify, support and promote the development and establishment of pan-European eGovernment services supporting the Member States and the Community in the implementation, within their respective areas of competence, of Community policies and activities, achieving substantial benefits for public administrations, businesses and citizens.

We can resume:

  • Providing technical and economic expertise on specific issues related to the deployment of FLOSS
  • Encouraging the re-use of publicly-financed Free and Libre Open Source Software (FLOSS) developments or FLOSS developments specifically targeting public sector requirements
  • Linking up national activities and actors in order to facilitate structured and informal dialogues between these

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How does OSOR.EU work?

OSOR provides a platform and support for cross-border collaboration on IT-solutions for public administrations. Modelled after well-known sites such as SourceForge that host developers communities around projects, the European FLOSS repository hosts European financed applications but is also open to host eGovernment applications, in general. The OSOR services and content focus on software and applications that are of specific interest for public administrations. It is also providing access to national repositories since the purpose of this action is to encourage the emergence of a federation of national FLOSS repositories rather than to implement a unique source for such software.

OSOR will be playing a leading role in the promotion of FLOSS among Public Administrations.

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How to use OSOR.EU?

If you just want to download software or you are interested in open source related topics, you just have to enter If you also want to be an active member of one of the user communities in OSOR, or you have a project to share a registration is required. OSOR provides a platform that allows you to implement, share and reuse FLOSS projects as well as discuss OSS topics, projects and possible collaborations with other Public Administrations. The search functionality of the site is worth mentioning because will allow not only to find Projects or possible collaboration on the platform itself but also on all the National repositories that have federated themselves with OSOR.EU

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OSOR.EU provides a platform for facilitating cross-border developments

If you have already implemented cross-border project, OSOR.EU is the platform for your projects. OSOR will:

  • Increase the visibility of your project at a European Leve
  • Open up your project for wider collaboration
  • Allow the reuse of your experience for the benefits of other Public Administrations
  • Reduce implementation costs
  • Find projects even if they are not physically present in the platform itself

Technical requirements

OSOR.EU is a web based application that doesn't require any installation of additional software. An internet connection and Web Browser are the only requirements to be able to read and use the platform. The OSOR.EU services are free of charge.

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Current status of the project – further plans was officially launched in Malaga, Spain in October, 2008, with 35 hosted projects. Since its launched, the site has experienced an ever increasing number of visitors and visibility. As of June, 2009, the number of hosted projects has increased to 85, the number of unique visitors per month reached 30 000. The site also offers a centralized search engine which can search among 1600 federated projects in European repositories.

The project aims at not only constantly improving its current services but also introducing new ones.

In this respect, two new features are introduced in July, 2009:

Virtual forges

A new service, which expects the highest impact of is the introduction of Virtual Forge. This service will enable non-profit organizations and member states to create and operate their own, fully customized repositories, using the resources of What does this mean in practice? For organizations which already have (or plan to have) a number of open source applications which they would like to present and share under a branded repository, but without the burden of running and operating high availability servers and services, will provide a virtual repository, which is fully customizable.

By revealing member states and public-administrations of the burden of running a full scaled repository with all the associated cost of operating the necessary infrastructure, the Commission expects an addition increase of new OS applications and repositories on a national and regional level.

Detailed business description of hosted projects

One of the first question a public administration asks when they find a promising open source application is: “Is his good enough for me”?

It is very hard to decide based on a short description only, whether a particular software solution would match the requirements of a specific administration. In order to make such decision easier, will provide a detailed 'business view' on its hosted projects, which will include a detailed information of the project objectives, status, participating members, and also metrics on the quality of code and the activity of its community through the use of automatic analyzing tools.

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Further information about OSOR.EU

OSOR.EU is an open set of services and information platform that support and promote the de-velopment of Free Libre Open Source Software. You will find further information about our objectives, work and processes on our website. Visit for regular updates.

European Commission
Directorate-General for Informatics
European eGovernment services (IDABC)
B-1049 Brussels, Belgium

For further information on our services contact:

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Technical Information

Project start date


Project completion date


IDA budget

IDABC budget

€ 750.000

2006-2009 € 1.764.815

Responsible service

DG Informatics - IDABC Unit

Project coordinator

Szabolcs SZEKACS


Countries involved

All EU Member States

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