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More businesses are choosing open source software.

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This story appears in the March 2004 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

The State of Massachusetts and a growing number of businesses have something in common: open source software. Massachusetts recently set a new policy of giving preference to open source software when making new purchases and upgrading old equipment. It's a move that ties into a trend that's sweeping up entrepreneurs as well.

Open source software is no longer the overlooked ugly stepchild to proprietary software. Alex Chejlyk, owner of SwiftNet Computer Systems Inc., an IT solutions provider in North Port, Florida, had a difficult fling with open source in the early '90s. But a chance meeting with a copy of Mandrake Linux at Wal-Mart brought him back around. Chejlyk moved his systems over to open source software and now spends his time helping other businesses make the change.

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