Well as far as I understand things, the bigger *nix based open-source companies like Red Hat (makers of Fedora) and Canonical (Ubuntu) make their money from paid technical support.
So for example, a company/business which uses Ubuntu on their systems/servers can pay Canonical a subscription each year, which entitles the company to professional technical support directly from Canonical.
Home users can also pay for support if they want to, but generally most home users will use the free public forums / IRC channels for support. But for companies and businesses, paid support is the best way to go as it ensures a timely and technically accurate response in their time of crisis.
I'm not sure how much their support packages cost, but I'd imagine it would be rather expensive and they must sell a lot of them!
So that's one way, selling technical support for your product.
Another way of making money from an open source project is to set up a paypal donation page so people can donate money directly to the project.
Due to the nature of donations the downside here is; you aren't guaranteed any kind of regular income, if any at all. Many small open-source projects get next to nothing. But if you manage to create something exceptional, which is used by a lot of people and particularly if your software has commercial uses; you could get a lot of donations, which even if only small, could still add up to a considerable sum of money!
In fact some companies will donate large sums to good quality open-source projects. For example, one company I used to work for used several bits of open-source software for development and they made some sizeable donations (ranging from 100's to 1000's) to all of the open-source projects whose products they used.
I'm not sure, but I think some companies will even sponsor an open-source project if it is of interest to them. (i.e. regularly donate money and other resources to it.)
There may be a few other ways, but these are the main ones that I'm aware of!
Cheers for now,
I am not sure, but I think they could get some money from donations too, although I don`t think it will be a lot..but still, wikipedia is a good example.
Another way would be some affiliate stuff, but again, I am not sure
how developers can make money from open sources developing ??
I need details about this
Most Open Source developers are paid employees of companies like Red Hat, Suse, IBM, etc. or work for other software companies or are internal developers for a company. If you are independent, then you charge your clients for support or charge for development time-or both. In most ways, it's a lot like closed source developers. There's also no reason why a company or developer can not sell their software, even if it's Open Source when you remember that the "free" in free software is free as in speech, not beer. So if you create an Open Source project, then you have the choice of whether to charge for it or not. I don't think I'd rely on the donation strategy for a revenue stream but it may also be a viable option.