MIMO, France’s inter-ministerial working group on free software, is expanding its reach. The responsibility of the working group now includes the selection and certification of solutions that allow large-scale desktop management, including inventory management and software deployment.
MIMO (Mutualisation Interministérielle pour une Bureautique Ouverte) also has many more members. Two ministries joined the group: Health and Social Affairs and Foreign Affairs. Of France’s 17 ministries, 11 are now involved in MIMO.
Other new members are France’s largest research organisation (CNRS), the institute for health medical research (Inserm) and the agencies for family welfare (CAF). Several city administrations have joined MIMO, and last year, MIMO’s parent organisation, DISIC, renewed its 2008 association agreement with Adullact, the platform for French civil servants working on free software.
With Adullact’s over 300 members, MIMO’s reach already surpasses the country’s borders to include Belgium’s federal government services. Yet in 2014 MIMO crossed even the Atlantic, with the personal membership of one of the staff members working for the Free Software Resource Centre (CELL) in Quebec (Canada).
At its start in 2005, MIMO’s task was to introduce free software office tools. The group in 2012 decided on LibreOffice, and this suite is now installed on nearly all 500,000 desktops of France’s ministries: Energy (Ecology), Defence (Défense), Interior (Intérieur), Economy, Justice, Agriculture, Culture and Communication, Education, Finance, and the two newly joined ministries, Health and Social Affairs and Foreign Affairs.
Currently, MIMO’s biggest task is updating its selection of free software. The 2015 edition of this Socle Interministériel de Logiciels Libres (SILL, the inter-ministerial free software base) will be made available this month. The selection is shared as a descriptive list online. The selection intended for desktop workstations will be available as a downloadable DVD image. Currently, these hyperlinks provide the 2014 edition.
The use of the SILL software is not mandatory, but the SILL is a reference and the ministries have to consider it in their choice.