It works just as proprietary software systems provided by comercial software films. The idea for an Open Source Software is that the users are co-developers.
The advantages are:
- It is all most all the time free.
- It is evolving in real time as developers add to stuff to it and modify it.
- Using it means that you are not locked in using a vendor´s system that only work with other systems.
- You can modify and adapt it for your own requirements.
The disadvanteges are:
- Because it is no requirement to créate a commercial product to generare money, it can evolve more thanks to the developers.
- Because of the same reason, is can be less "user-friendy".
- It has less support available when things go wrong.
- Because it is mostly free, it may be indirecto costs involved.
- They are people identifying bugs and fixing them. And that bad users can view it and exploit any vulnerablility.
The difference between Open Source Software and other software is that, some softwares cannot be modified by anyone but only by the user that is called "proprietary software". But Open Source Software you can modify it and you can view tha code, copy it, learn from it, alterare it or share it
An example of Open Source Software is LibreOffice and GNU Image Manipulation Program.
Some tip is that you can start using the most popular Open Source Software that is on a large community of support behind them.
I hope you like it,