Got an idea for a holiday? Send it to us

Submit Now

Free Open Source Software Month – February 2025

Free Open Source Software or FOSS is celebrated every year in February to appreciate software that is both free and open-source where any user has a license to use the software and the source code is shared so that people are encouraged to voluntarily improve its design. It maintains the software user’s civil liberty rights, protects their privacy, and gives users more control over their own hardware. Although there are strong similarities between free-software licenses and open-source-software licenses, advocates of each often have disagreements with one another. FOSS was created on neutral ground.

History of Free Open Source Software Month

From the middle of the 20th century to the 1980s, it was common for computer users to have the source code for all programs they used, and the permission to change it for their own use. Source code was commonly shared by computer users, often as public domain software.

In 1983, Richard Stallman announced the G.N.U. project, aimed at setting a precedent in open-source software. The G.N.U. operating system launched in 1984 and was followed by the establishment of the Free Software Foundation (F.S.F.).

Eric Raymond published “The Cathedral and the Bazaar” in 1997, which examined the hacker community and principles of free software. The paper received significant attention in early 1998 and heavily influenced Netscape Communications to release their product as free software, better known in modern times as Mozilla, Firefox, and Thunderbird. This development led to Raymond leading a team of people to adapt the F.S.F’s free software to the commercial software industry. The free software movement was therefore eventually rebranded as ‘open source.’

Despite the apparent goodwill behind the commercialization of open source, software vendors became insecure with the whole idea of it. However, the success of FOSS operating systems such as Linux, B.S.D., and the companies based on FOSS such as Red Hat, have changed the software industry’s attitude and there has been a major paradigm shift in commercial thinking regarding the development of FOSS.

Free Open Source Software Month timeline

G.N.U. Project is Announced

Richard Stallman announces the commencement of the G.N.U. project.

Free Software Foundation is Established

Two years after the G.N.U. project is launched, Richard Stallman establishes the Free Software Foundation.

Python is Commercially Released

Guido van Rossum releases Python, a general-purpose computer programming language.

May 2003
WordPress is Created

This popular open-source content management system (C.M.S.), is created in May.

Free Open Source Software Month FAQs

What is open-source software?

Open-source software is software that isn’t limited by private licensing but is rather free for all users and has publicly available source code.

Can open-source software be commercialized?

Yes. The ideal way to monetize open source is by building a commercial software extension to one’s free offering.

What is the difference between FOSS and free software?

Technically, both mean the same thing as they operate along the same lines providing software that is easily accessible and which respects user freedoms. The difference is in the philosophies of the members of each.

Free Open Source Software Month Activities

  1. Talk about it on social media

    Social media is a valuable way to get almost anything done. You can reach a wide audience online and share your thoughts and ideas with that many people. So, if you’re a fan of open source, you can join the conversation online and use hashtags such as #FOSSFeb to trend your posts.

  2. Attend an open-source event

    There is usually a lot of activity during FOSS month, on and offline. You could attend ‘OpenCon’ for example and get the opportunity to listen to expert analyses and teachings about free and open-source software.

  3. Create your own open-source project

    You read that right. In the spirit of Free and Open Source Software month, you can put yourself in Steve Job’s shoes, and get creative. These days it is so much easier to create your own projects on platforms like GitHub for example.


  1. Called ‘open source’ in 1998

    Free and open-source software had been around for years, but mostly in theory, and it was usually called ‘free software’ that is, until 1998 when the term ‘open source’ was first coined.

  2. A-2 was the first open-source software

    It’s widely believed that Linux is the world’s first open-source software, however, the actual first open-source software, was the A-2.

  3. Linux is the world’s best FOSS

    Linux is the most invaluable and sought-after open-source software in the world.

  4. FOSS platforms are best for software applications

    An overwhelming majority of the software applications in circulation are built using open-source software.

  5. There are awards for FOSS

    It might sound unusual but if you consider that most IT communications tools today are developed from FOSS, you’d understand the need to award those at the forefront of such technology.

Why We Love Free Open Source Software Month

  1. It is free

    Just like it says in its name, free and open-source software is without charge. Its source code is also readily available to those who wish to make use of it.

  2. FOSS allows for inferred creations

    Due to the flexibility of free and open-source, users can get inspiration from already made creations and simply modify or improve their functionality. We love this!

  3. The internet is open source

    The internet as we know it today, with its endless possibilities and usefulness, is open-source. We can do so much on the internet because it is free and its source code is publicly available.

Free Open Source Software Month dates

2025February 1Saturday
2026February 1Sunday
2027February 1Monday
2028February 1Tuesday
2029February 1Thursday
La Poutine Week
National Patient Recognition Week
National Patient Recognition Week
Solo Diners Eat Out Week
Women's Heart Week
World Interfaith Harmony Week
Abolition of Slavery Day
Car Insurance Day
Change Your Password Day
Conservatorship and Guardianship Abuse Awareness Day
Day of Remembrance and Respect to Victims of the Communist Regime
Decorating With Candy Day
Federal Territory Day
G.I. Joe Day
Heroes' Day
Holiday Hugs Day
Hula in the Coola Day
International Face and Body Art Day
Lung Leavin’ Day
National Baked Alaska Day
National Cameron Day
National Dark Chocolate Day
National Freedom Day
National Get Up Day
National Ice Cream for Breakfast Day
National Sean Day
National Serpent Day
Pisco Sour Day
Robinson Crusoe Day
Spunky Old Broads Day
Take Your Child To The Library Day
Texas Day
World Aspergillosis Day
World Hijab Day
Yukon Quest
Adopt a Rescued Rabbit Month
African American Heritage Month
African American Read-In
AMD/Low Vision Awareness Month
American Heart Month
An Affair to Remember Month
Barley Month
Beat the Heat Month
Berry Fresh Month
Bike To Work Month
Bike To Work Month
Black History Month
Canned Food Month
Celebration of Chocolate Month
Cholangiocarcinoma Awareness Month
Creative Romance Month
Declutter for a Cause Month
Dog Training Education Month
Ethnic Equality Month
Exotic Vegetables and Star Fruit Month
Fabulous Florida Strawberry Month
Feline Fix by Five Month
Financial Aid Awareness Month
Free Open Source Software Month
From Africa to Virginia Month
Great American Pie Month
Human Relations Month
Humpback Whale Awareness Month
Humpback Whale Awareness Month
International Boost Self Esteem Month
International Expect Success Month
International Friendship Month
International Hoof Care Month
International Month of Black Women in the Arts
International Prenatal Infection Prevention Month
Jobs in Golf Month
LGBT+ History Month
Library Lovers Month
Love the Bus Month
Marfan Syndrome Awareness Month
Marijuana Awareness Month
National Arts Month
National Avocado and Banana Month
National Bake For Family Fun Month
National Bird Feeding Month
National Blah Buster Month
National Cancer Prevention Month
National Care About Your Indoor Air Month
National Cat Health Month
National Cherry Month
National Children’s Dental Health Month
National Condom Month
National Embroidery Month
National Enrolled Agents Month
National Fasting February
National Fondue Month
National Goat Yoga Month
National Grapefruit Month
National Haiku Writing Month
National Heart Healthy Month
National Hot Breakfast Month
National Laugh-Friendly Month
National Macadamia Nut Month
National Mend a Broken Heart Month
National Parent Leadership Month
National Self-Check Month
National Senior Independence Month
National Snack Food Month
National Sweet Potato Month
National Therapeutic Recreation Month
National Time Management Month
National Wedding Month
National Women Inventors Month
North American Inclusion Month (NAIM)
Pet Dental Health Month
Plant the Seeds of Greatness Month
Plant the Seeds of Greatness Month
Potato Lovers Month
Pull Your Sofa Off the Wall Month
Raynaud's Awareness Month
Relationship Wellness Month
Responsible Pet Owners Month
Return Shopping Carts to the Supermarket Month
Spay/Neuter Awareness Month
Spiritual Teachers Month
Spunky Old Broads Month
Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month
Vegan Cuisine Month
Wise Health Care Consumer Month
Women’s Role in History Month
Worldwide Renaissance of the Heart Month
Youth Leadership Month

Holidays Straight to Your Inbox

Every day is a holiday!
Receive fresh holidays directly to your inbox.