The U.S. Army & Red Hat – Taking Ownership of IT through Choice, Control & Innovation

Check out this great whitepaper written by our friend Cathy Gallagher, Red Hat DoD/Army Account Executive, on the use of Open Source software and innovation within the Army. 

With the current budget cuts and the looming certainty of more to come, this is a

critical time for Defense. While infrastructure costs continue to increase,

if current trends continue, the costs to maintain the enterprise will exceed

even the most liberal resource projections. It’s clear today that senior leadership

knows that a significant comprehensive change is urgently required.


Open Source Software (OSS) has, for years, brought together the best and

brightest developers  to produce software products that rival commercial solutions

on every level. Department of Defense (DoD) agencies of all sizes are continuing

to realize the power and savings that  open source solutions provide to mission

critical operations. An example of this is Mil‐, which exists to improve

technology development and innovation across the DoD.


In 2009 the DoD issued a memo providing clarification and guidance to establish

the definitive interpretation of Open Source Software (OSS) as being“commercial”

and therefore given preferential treatment in the acquisition process and extended

that interpretation to all military services.  The memo expresses confidence in the

OSS security model: “the continuous and broad peer review enabled by publicly

available source code supports software reliability and security efforts through

the identification and elimination of defects that might otherwise go unrecognized

by a more limited core development team.”


With over 200,000+ instances deployed Army wide, Red Hat’s OSS has had a

tremendous impact on reducing costs and increasing agility within the enterprise

in U.S. Army programs like, but not limited to, DCGSA, AESIP, LMP, PM



GoArmy, BEP, IPPS‐A and PM JBC‐P.


The Army’s own Common Operating Environment prescribes an open standards

approach, which makes it easier for the Army to entertain a number alternatives

for critical infrastructure tools.  Similarly, the Federal Shared Services

Implementation Guide makes it clear that procurements for cloud infrastructure

should include a clear “exit strategy” to encourage more choice and more control

over the Army’s computing  platform.


In the private sector, we have seen an explosion of innovation using these

principles leading cloud providers like Facebook, Google,and Amazon are built

around open source software. Red Hat believes the Army should focus on driving

innovation with the utilization of more open source and open standards‐based tools.


To download the full article click here – Army – RedHat Whitepaper – February 2014