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How to Contribute to Open Source

Open source means that the source code of the software is available for free to everyone and you can modify the code and distribute it yourself.

How to Contribute to Open Source article provided by wikiHow. Content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons License.

Open source means that the source code of the software is available for free to everyone and you can modify the code and distribute it yourself.

edit Steps

  1. 1
    Use different open source projects like Linux, Solaris, Firefox, Filezilla, Apache HTTP Server, Gaim, and others.
  2. 2
    Look for a place to contribute. This means not only programming, but also documentation, theme design, art work, or architectural design.
  3. 3
    Note that each project has its own distinct methods for communication and submitting contributions.
  4. 4
    Join the mailing list. This is highly recommended because you will never feel that you are left behind. You can also get feedback on patches and contributions.
  5. 5
    Respect and maintain discussions.
  6. 6
    Encourage contributions.
  7. 7
    Start small by reporting and fixing bugs.
  8. 8
    Submitting small patches containing bug fixes.
  9. 9
    Respond and send feedback.
  10. 10
    If you really want to help but don't have the experience or the know-how, DONATE! By giving a few dollars to help out open source developers, you can help them get the tools they need to build better programs.

edit Tips

  • Put your heart into work, take interest in contributing to open source. You can improve your technical skills.

edit Warnings

  • "Talk is cheap. Show me the Code" -Linus. Don't defend bad code. Show the code to the community.
  • Learn the specific toolchain used by the project before contributing. This can include the build system, harness for unit tests, bugtracking software, version control system, and communication channels used by the developers and users.

edit Things You'll Need

  • Computer
  • Internet connection
  • Programming skills that match the project you are contributing to(usually C, C++, Java, PHP, or Python)
  • Commonsense

edit Sources and Citations

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