Today We Offer DevShare (Beta), A Sustainable Way To Fund Open Source Software

By rgaloppini

Today SourceForge it is excited to launch DevShare, a new opt-in, revenue-sharing program aimed at giving developers a better way to monetize their projects in a transparent, honest and sustainable way.

DevShare is a new partnership program designed to make it easy for SourceForge developers to offer a selection of trusted open source applications to users, turning downloads into a source of revenue that can help fund their projects. This revenue will help these projects to grow and offer additional software to our users.

We take our role at SourceForge as the trusted source for open source very seriously. That is why we spent considerable time looking for partners we could trust and building a system that does not detract from our core user experience.

We know many open source users are skeptical about monetization initiatives. SourceForge will always respect the rights of our users and we will never infringe on them. DevShare offers a transparent installation flow that gives users all the necessary information to make educated choices about what software to install.

Thanks to DevShare, we are now able to offer a bundle program that is fully compliant with Google’s strictest policies. This includes a solid compliance process for both open source applications and third party offerings. The whole installation flow is clean and has no misleading steps. Uninstallation procedures are exhaustively documented and all applications are verified to be virus and malware free. You can see this on the latest version of FileZilla, our largest DevShare partner to date.

Last but not least, we will only include projects that have opted into our program. Our compliance processes are very strict and, as such, our beta program is going to be invitation-only during this first phase. If you would like to participate in this revenue-sharing program, just drop us an email, we’ll be back to you as soon as possible.

Stay tuned for more!

33 Responses

  1. v20090317 says:

    This is what is really happening. Sourceforge thought that CNET of download stubs/wrappers was such a good idea that they decided to do the same.
    I tried FileZilla.
    I chose file FileZilla_3.7.1.1_win32-setup.exe (4.8MB) and downloaded it. But instead of a 4.8MB installation program what i got was a “stub downloader”: SFInstaller_SFFZ_filezilla_8706467_.exe (1.0MB).
    This is just dishonesty and deception. No warning is given that the file we choose is not the file that we will get! None!
    If we click on this stub downloader it then downloads the installation program (it will also insist that you install others things, be careful) of FileZilla. But does give us any hint of where it is stored and it will be executed immediately, without any warning.
    This type of thing cannot be made correctly. This is just a bad idea.

    • galoppini says:

      Actually the download page says that you are downloading the Sourceforge installer, and you can either accept or decline the installation of a secondary offering.
      Differently from other download sites we are giving developers the possibility to join our partner program, making possible for them to fund the development of their applications.

      • braindead0 says:

        @galoppini Er, it doesn’t say anything about secondary offerings… nor does it really state clearly that this is a wrapper that will download the ‘official’ installer from an untrusted third party.  I used to trust SF, no longer.

        • galoppini says:

          @braindead0 With the next push – due early next week – we’ll update the text on the download page to better reflect that the SourceForge installer provides some options.
          Thanks for the feedback.

        • braindead0 says:

          @galoppini Will the installer still require elevation and then try to download before users are getting the option?  This is a HUGE security risk and unacceptable.

    • braindead0 says:

      @v20090317 The installer also requires elevation before there is any indication of the source (unless you look at the file signature, which is from  It then tries to talk back to and download whatever it is they want, no choice on the users part, no warning.  In my case I’ve blocked on all of the networks I manage so the installer failed.  That was the only indication I had during this process that there was anything unusual.

  2. tololl says:


  3. johndoe445566 says:

    It’s really sad that Sourcefore has become a crapware pusher.  I hope you enjoy your 30 pieces of silver.
    galoppini:  You’re completely missing the point.  v20090317 said it well: “This type of thing cannot be made correctly. This is just a bad idea.”  Since that didn’t sink in, perhaps a crude analogy will help you understand…  You’re basically trying to convince us that <really bad scenario> really isn’t that bad, and that you’re planning to make it even less objectionable.  You can’t.  It’s <really bad scenario>.  Nothing will make it OK.

  4. […] I was thinking about all this I learned that Sourceforge released a new program to fund development of free/open source software with a revenue sharing program called DevShare. Reading the press release, DevShare offers free […]

  5. RobertoMoir says:

    @galoppini Keep telling yourself that it’s ok. You might start to believe it after a while. Pushing things like is a long way from OK and this is a very sad state of affairs from what used to be a reasonably trustworthy corner of the Internet.

  6. […] developers should always be able to tailor the user experience as they see fit. Read about how SourceForge’s new revenue sharing for developers measures up to this standard in today’s InfoWorld […]

  7. […] as a central hosting and services site for countless open source projects–unveiled a beta version of a service called DevShare. DevShare is an opt-in revenue-sharing program "aimed at giving developers a better way to […]

  8. […] as a central hosting and services site for countless open source projects–unveiled a beta version of a service called DevShare. DevShare is an opt-in revenue-sharing program “aimed at giving developers a better way to […]

  9. SmartCardMaster says:

    That is really sad. A good idea became such a bad thing.

  10. […] try their best to protect the end users from ‘bad things’.  With the announcement of DevShare SourceForge shows that they no longer give a single…  I’ll start with the introductory […]

  11. […] as a central hosting and services site for countless open source projects–unveiled a beta version of a service called DevShare. DevShare is an opt-in revenue-sharing program “aimed at giving developers a better way to […]

  12. Sourceforgeisdead says:

    Yeah, I’m never coming here again.

  13. dbgarf says:

    dead service is dead.

  14. 10100101101011 says:

    500 more unhappy ex-customers:

  15. Caz2kzed says:

    The “stub” does not have provisions to download through the firewall I’m behind. Please provide a direct download link as an alternative. Don’t become useless like “other” sites that force the use of a download client.

  16. jgowdy says:

    Goodbye SourceForge. You’re done. Even backtracking at this point is futile.

  17. resdim says:

    SourceForge you should have done ads to afford servers; not degraded yourself to a free download website. You don’t even have the excuse of hosting pirated software!

  18. […] noticed this stuff the other day when I went to download Filezilla from […]

  19. […] Today We Offer DevShare (Beta), A Sustainable Way To Fund Open Source Software | SourceForge Communi…. […]

  20. resdim says:

    @galoppini Then ban secondary installations… Allow people to package the adware in their own software and then ban them. The last thing SourceForge needs is revenue-based development. You might as well partner up with CNET LOL

  21. braindead0 says:

    The crapware installer I last checked requires administrator permissions and then immediately (before presenting any options) attempts to download from a third party site (in my test, which was blocked).
    SF has no control over what is being downloaded from third party sites, the user has no indication and by that time has dropped their pants by providing administrator privileges (on windows at least).
    This is a HUGE security hole that you (SF) cannot close and cannot even guarantee is safe. The third party site can replace the download with whatever they want at any time without any warning and install whatever they wish with no warning.
    Make all the baseless assurances you can, this scheme is insecure and cannot be secured. Period.

  22. galoppini says:

    Over one month after the launch of the DevShare – that is going great and counts already two of our top 10 titles – I wish to share some more background info about our program.
    Before we launch the DevShare some SourceForge projects were already bundling their binaries with others’ secondary offerings, and we received end-users’ complaints for one or more of the following reasons:
    – the installation flow is opaque and provides little or no choice about secondary offering installations;
    – how to uninstall those secondary offerings is undocumented and often requires a lot of effort;
    – secondary offerings are not always safe and secure applications.
    Having heard that, our primary goals designing the DevShare program were to make sure to do a better job of helping developers yet protecting end-users from unwanted installations or malicious software.
    Developers opt in and are compensated, they are in control both of the installer behavior and of what sort of secondary offerings will be presented to their user base. Moreover they are not asked to integrate their application with a third parties’ piece of code, and maintaining a bundled and unbundled version is trivial for them.
    End-users are provided with a transparent installer behavior, all programs are malware-free and honestly described. All uninstall procedures are extensively tested, both for open source applications and third parties’ offerings.
    We believe we did a pretty good job in this sense. We are glad to see that people like Simon Phipps – OSI Director and open source veteran – says that the DevShare seems to score well against his seven metrics for identifying best practice in download services (check it out at
    A note about comments. By default comments are set to automatically close after 30 days, we temporarily reopened them because some of you have asked for, for the future please join the conversation at the DevShare forum on SourceForge.

  23. […] Drittsoftware angeboten wird. Dasselbe sicherte auch SourceForge bei der Vorstellung seines DevShare-Programms zu, dem der Installer entstammt: keine Malware, keine Irreführung des Anwenders, problemlose […]

  24. […] Sourceforge’s blog (emphasis […]

  25. […] acquired by Dice Holdings from the previous owner Geeknet in September 2012. On July 1st of 2013, SourceForge announced a new program for developers called DevShare which allowed installers to be repackaged as ad-supported installers to provide […]