Among the Sakai project’s great strengths are the flexible deployment options available to adopters, including:
- Deploy and support Sakai yourself: Deploy the software on your own and draw on the support of an active global community comprised of 350+ institutions.
- Deploy Sakai yourself and purchase commercial support: Install and deploy the software yourself, and engage a Commercial Affiliate to provide additional support services.
- Deploy and support Sakai using a Commercial Affiliate: Contract with a trusted partner to implement and support your Sakai installation.
- Use Sakai in a hosted environment: Contract with a Commercial Affiliate to host, deploy, maintain and support your institution’s installation of Sakai.
- Select some combination of the options above: Between the diversity of the Sakai community and the flexibility of the Sakai, adopter institutions are using a variety of approaches deploy Sakai successfully.
For institutions with sufficient internal resources and technical expertise to maintain an open source software environment like Sakai, deploying Sakai themselves may be attractive because of the inherent creativity and almost limitless flexibility of this approach. Other institutions choose to draw on commercial support options to augment their capabilities or provide a solution tailored to their specific needs.
Financial Planning for a Sakai Deployment
Compared to proprietary solutions, Sakai requires a different approach to financial planning and total cost of ownership. Because the software has no license fees, Sakai can be extended to any number of individuals or educational communities without increasing licensing costs.
Adopter institutions must plan for hardware and other infrastructure costs, as well as the people, skill sets and time required to deploy, administer and support Sakai, whether these things are handled in-house, or by an external partner. Adopter institutions are also encouraged to join the Apereo Foundation and contribute modest annual membership fees to sustain the Sakai project. These fees provide for technical and community coordination and enable Apereo to be a safe haven for Sakai IPR and licensing.