The present work tries to find alternative free and open source software for popular commercial proprietary
software packages, used widely at every days work in field of civil engineering. Motivation for this was two
sided. First part consists of a wish for lowering the expenses of small companies, by the use of free and open
source software. Second part tries to address stereotypes that are frequently related with free and open source
software. This type of software is inside of civil engineering field often perceived as unserious alternative in
relation to proprietary software. Present work tries to show that the realm of free and open source software can
presently offer a great deal of tools to civil engineers and help them with their everyday work. It is also clearly
shown, that free and open source software, because of its wide and highly motivated community, possesses high
potential for development, which needs to be taken into account in future years.
The present work starts with introduction of movement for free and open source software and it presents two
main philosophical camps that constitute the community for free and open source software. After that follows the
more or less superficial review of currently available free and open source software packages and level of their
functionality. The assessment about potential use of free software in civil engineering companies is presented on
the case of hypothetical representative company. In the final stage, simple cost analysis is made, that tries to
show potential positive financial benefits for target companies, in case of acquiring free and open source
software instead of proprietary software.