Type of site
|Content sharing website|
|Created by||Frank Karlitschek|
|Commercial||no (AGPL released server-code)|
openDesktop.org is a content sharing website portal for the free software community. It centers on developing and publishing libre content like themes or wallpapers and software like applications or add-ons that are released under liberal licensing terms like the GPL or Creative Commons. In that regard openDesktop.org is one of the biggest online communities for making such content available, serving as platform for the official KDE Store and other sites that are part of the network, like gnome-look.org, xfce-look.org and more. It's a place where developers, artists and users come together sharing more than 100,000 user generated contents and generating over 90 million page impressions per month.
Content and Scope
The site allows everyone to download the content from Opendesktop.org without registration or any other limitation or cost. Registered users can up- or downvote content, add comments or make a donation and also upload new content such as applications, themes, add-ons or other libre content provided it is made available under liberal licensing terms.
openDesktop.org uses the Open Collaboration Services API, or short OCS API, which is a certified standard protocol of freedesktop.org. KDE SC 4 was the first project to make use of the OCS API. Nowadays KDE Plasma 5 and various KDE-applications use the OCS API via the KNewStuff framework.
The social or community aspect of the portal has been a driving factor early on. According to the project site a well communicated community is necessary to improve the acceptance of open source and to grow market share of the Linux Desktop. Today the acceptance and public view of FLOSS projects and CC artwork is growing, as is the willingness to sustain quality content via donating to the creators of such content. The goal is to continue to grow this community of free software users and encourage them to support the creators via donations to make OpenDesktop.org a place, where everyone can freely join and meet people with the same passion for FOSS and CC content.
Growth and Statistics
In the beginning of December 2001, 2000 users were registered on the sites. About 0.8 million page impressions per month were made. A year later, in 2002 there were 6000 registered users and 3 million page impressions. Heavy growth for more than 8 years lead to more than 130.000 registered users from over 100 countries in 2009. Over 90 million page impressions per month are reached with more than 6 Terabytes traffic per month. 2.5 million people visit openDesktop.org every month.
The first website of the portal, KDE-Look.org, was started in the year 2001 by Frank Karlitschek. Shortly many similar sites with focus on other open source themes such as GNOME were launched. Today, more than 35 community sites are available. In 2007 the openDesktop.org got established as an umbrella page for the whole network that summarizes the content from the sites such as Xfce-Look.org, GNOME-Look.org or Linux-Apps.com.
Today openDesktop.org is a global meeting place for open source and Linux enthusiasts from different countries. The websites are operated and maintained by the hive01 GmbH, based in Bielefeld, Germany. In January 2016 Frank Karlitschek sold hive01 to Blue Systems GmbH.
- "Frank Karlitschek about the web traffic".
- "Short history about the evolution of openDesktop.org".
- "Overview of all included websites".
- "Announcement of the openDesktop.org head website".
- "Blue Systems acquired openDesktop.org".