10 Best Knowledge Base Open Source Software: Features + Pros & Cons

The data captured, created, consumed, and copied worldwide increased from 1.2 trillion gigabytes to 59 trillion gigabytes, a nearly 5,000% growth from 2010 to 2020. Knowledge, information, and data are significant assets for any organization.

The best and efficient method to build a knowledge base in your scaling company is to use free or open source software. Collaboration platforms provide varied knowledge base open source solutions. Such knowledge sharing plays a vital role to ensure better customer support and augment overall productivity. 

Top 10 Knowledge Base Software Solutions In The Market

A free and open source knowledge base software can be used as a knowledge base for software developers or an effective knowledge sharing platform for the internal team. Here, in this section, we are going to compare 10 knowledge base software based on their features, advantages, and disadvantages through a tabular form. The detailed explanation of free and open source software in the subsequent sections will provide you vital information needed to select the best one.

By implementing the best open source Knowledge Management (KM) software solutions, you can manage employee access to information, create knowledge bases, foster collaboration, and facilitate employee training. Taking reference from Capterra, we have also mentioned the overall user rating based on customer service and ease of use.

Software Name User Ratings Pros Cons
Exo
4.6/5
  • Easy to use and can install on any OS
  • Mobile Collaboration possible
  • Useful chat and file sharing functionality
  • Possess considerable learning curve
  • Feature customization is time-consuming
  • User Management is quite complex
Documize
4.6/5
  • Easy to add/edit documents
  • Permission-based access to content to outsiders
  • Clutter-free and straightforward content management
  • Lacking support in loading messages
  • High-Cost subscription
  • Not appropriate documentation
CloudTutorial
4.3/5
  • SEO-friendly templates
  • Categories and subcategories option available
  • Quick and smart search
  • Fully customizable – help desk, SOPs, and FAQ page that share data
  • Cost-effective knowledge base created with custom HTML/CSS, contact form, and diverse themes
  • SSL on a custom domain is available only in paid plans
phpMyFAQ
4.0/5
  • Export contents to PDF, JSON, XHTML, and others
  • Fully customizable on front-end for impressive design
  • Facebook and Twitter integration
  • Lacking high-level technical knowledge to implement CMS
  • Does not work correctly with existing CMS integration
OpenKM
4.7/5
  • Easily configure mail notifications
  • Supports Digital signature on documents
  • Integrate multiple third-party applications
  • Copy and Move command work differently as expected
  • The interface is outdated
  • Quite tricky to setup user access
ProProfs Knowledge Base
4.7/5
  • No problem containing the information for an external self-serve portal
  • Easy to import documents, images, and videos to a knowledge base
  • Supports one author to create open-source knowledge base content
  • Team Collaboration isn’t an option with the base free package
  • Multiple functionality restrictions with the free version
FreshDesk
4.5/5
  • The free option is reasonably robust
  • There is no limit on storage, the number of agents, or knowledge bases
  • The features are pretty limited in the free version
  • Upgrades work as per agent, per month model
Bitrix24
4.0/5
  • Super adjustable, multi pipelines, streamlined CRM
  • Automation and visual work process creator
  • Great people group bolster
  • Pricing is a significant hindrance for tiny business
  • No option to get CRM or project management together
  • Mobile App functionality is quite limited
myBase
5.0/5
  • Facilitates autosave, auto backup, and auto index
  • Data Import/Export from/to various sources
  • Supports Javascript APIs for extending the functionality
  • Significant issues in file uploading
  • High Costing
LogicalDoc
4.0/5
  • A Multilingual interface that can work on desktop, and as iOS and Android apps
  • Import documents from Zip Archives
  • Integrate easily with WordPress Explorer, Joomla Explorer, and Dropbox
  • No robust product documentation
  • Time-consuming for indexing a large number of documents

  1. Exo

    EXO Logo

    Exo

    Best for Enhancing Workforce Engagement

    Rating: 4.6/5

  2. Following are the top features of Exo that help in finding the information with much ease:

    • Excellent document collaboration
    • Possess access and version control
    • Enables sending notifications automatically
    • Its implementation make customers collect, store, and share the information
    • Contains dynamic search functionality
    • By setting up permissions for the customers, get full control of content visibility

    Exo

    Exo is an open source KM software that helps growing companies and large enterprises connect employees and provide them with information from a single platform.

    You can also integrate other features in this knowledge management software version, such as a forum, chat for collaborating, your team’s wikis page, and other documents.  Additionally, you can maintain multiple knowledge bases quickly using eXo’s existing source code.

    Bottom line:

    eXo specializes in intra-team collaboration. It is open source enterprise-level software, but if you require a publicly accessible knowledge base, you have to buy a membership to utilize it.


  3. Documize

    Documize Logo

    Documize

    Best for Content Management and Project Management

    Rating: 4.6/5

  4. Documize has the below-mentioned vital features helping the organization collaborate effectively:

    • Access to different versions of each document
    • Capture and centralize the information or data necessary
    • User-friendly UX design
    • Organize the information with proper formatting and categorization
    • Seek approvals as per the hierarchy of the organization and control workflows
    • Reports and analytics for the content that the users are consuming

    Documize

    Documize is an open source knowledge base software that uses a wiki in combination with proprietary tools. This open source knowledge management software is a powerful software for a knowledge management system software that allows the customers to centralize and manage internal knowledge base solutions.

    Moreover, you can use knowledge base tools for products, services, or other processes.

    Bottom line:

    Documize is considered to be an easy-to-use knowledge management software. It is highly versatile and can modernize the approach you document your processes and systems.


  5. CloudTutorial

    CloudTutorial Logo

    CloudTutorial

    Best FAQ Software

    Rating: 4.3/5

  6. CloudTutorial has the following outstanding features:

    • Create an SEO-friendly knowledge base free of cost
    • Drag and drop questions, articles, and files from one category to another category
    • Choose your domain (e.g.: help.yourdomain.com.)
    • Create custom roles
    • Enables to add team members with custom role and rights
    • No need to keep backup
    • Create a robust knowledge base before you finish your coffee
    • Smart AI search and smart contact form

    CloudTutorial New 1

    CloudTutorial, a KMS platform, offers unique functionalities that are easy to implement. It possesses a customized contact form that allows a business to edit various fields in this form as per your necessities. You can do this by removing available fields, editing them as per the required information, and adding new ones. 

    The powerful search fetches the apt results for your consumers, even if they tend to misspell. Its Google-like capability advises significant articles that answer the users’ queries before they raise their questions. The FAQ structure is highly optimized in a way that users find your help articles while searching for various solutions in the web browser.

    Bottom line:

    CloudTutorial provides SEO-friendly knowledge base templates and unlimited article categories, tracks every article’s effectiveness, and highlights the ones that require improvement.

    image

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  7. phpMyFAQ

    phpMyFAQ Logo

    phpMyFAQ

    Best FAQ Software for PHP Version 7

    Rating: 4.0/5

  8. phpMyFAQ has the following essential features: 

    • Permission-based access 
    • A powerful search engine 
    • High-end security with LDAP and HTTP authentication
    • Multiple AD servers for configuration
    • Customers can ask or answer the questions
    • Analysis and reports of the content performance are available

    phpmyfaq

    Companies mainly use the phpMyFAQ for the FAQ content management system and are considered top open source knowledge base software. It enables the customers to create and manage FAQ records to collaborate and discuss the same.

    If one question persists before and some new users ask the same question again, this software automatically creates impressive answers for it. This open source knowledge base management tool lets you assign a user or group-based permissions to teams and individuals to view the editor to create content. 

    Bottom line:

    phpMyFAQ is a free, open source, and PHP-based knowledge management software. It is compatible with all current browsers and is available in 40+ languages.


  9. OpenKM

    OpenKM Logo

    OpenKM

    Businesses Dealing with Record Management

    Rating: 4.7/5

  10. OpenKM, a user-friendly software, has the following features:

    • Speedy user interface and design
    • Multiple global languages available for translation
    • Scans uploaded files and documents for viruses and other malware
    • Obtain in-depth information with an elaborative dashboard
    • Possess Microsoft office support for various versions
    • Collects emails from IMAP, Pop3

    OpenKM

    OpenKM launched its knowledge base software, especially for businesses that were seeking document storage and records management solutions, by building a controlled and seamless knowledge base repository to facilitate knowledge creation.

    This open source software also lets you create, receive, maintain, share, or dispose of records of business activities and transactions. Such a knowledge base platform is the best example for your business in terms of data regulations, ownership, and accountability. 

    Bottom line:

    OpenKM is an open source software that aids you in streamlining your workflow and improving productivity. This free document management software also helps you in managing your digital content efficiently.


  11. ProProfs Knowledge Base

    ProProfs Logo

    ProProfs

    Best FAQ Software for PHP Version 7

    Rating: 4.7/5

  12. The prime features of ProProfs knowledge base are as follows:

    • Enhanced characteristic of Contact and Customer Management
    • Google Apps integration
    • Live Chat Support
    • Attractive Pricing Plans
    • Impressive and effective API
    • Effective Workflow Management

    ProProfs

    ProProfs Knowledge Base is an open source knowledge base software designed explicitly for the teams no matter the size that focuses on Knowledge Management solution strictly; rather than concentrating on a more extensive business software stack suite.

    With this wiki software’s help, it becomes relatively easy for you to bundle your knowledge bases with other primary SaaS solutions if required. In addition to it, this open source and internal knowledge base software is part of the broader ProProfs learning management, help desk, training, and management software system.

    Bottom line:

    ProProfs Knowledge Base is a data-rich online knowledge base software that helps you to create online user manuals, knowledge base, documentation, and other relevant databases. It provides instant 24/7 self-help, improves team collaboration, keeps it public or limits access, and 100+ settings and integrations.


  13. FreshDesk

    FreshDesk Logo

    FreshDesk

    Providing Impressive Customer Support

    Rating: 4.5/5

  14. FreshDesk has some of the crucial features mentioned below:

    • Effective ticketing system
    • Support for consistent branding
    • Self Service portal
    • Multi-channel support
    • Detailed and enhanced reports
    • Advanced traits for notifications

    Freshdesk

    Freshdesk, the best open source knowledge base software solution, provides the primary functionality, including ticketing management, team collaboration, agent productivity tools, responsive source code, and other helpdesk automation functionality as a complete customer support solution.

    This open source software is designed explicitly for businesses focused on customer service using the advanced and external knowledge management system. 

    Bottom line:

    Freshdesk, an online cloud-based software, provides bots, omnichannel, and self-service solutions for customer service. It helps to streamline your customer discussions in one place and collaborate with other teams to solve problems faster.

    It also aids in automating the repetitive work of your time. This, in turn, saves much time for your team and customers.


  15. Bitrix24

    Bitrix24 Logo

    Bitrix24

    Best FAQ Software for Small Companies

    Rating: 4.0/5

  16. The main features that Bitrix24 offers are as follows:

    • Easy integration with MindMaps for effective project plans
    • Best navigation search and pricing plan
    • Support Bitrix24.Drive
    • Wiki Knowledgebase
    • Enhanced Customer Experience
    • Accurate CRM
    • Activity stream intranet center
    • Enables email notification

    Bitrix24

    Bitrix24 is the perfect open source knowledge base system software for enterprise companies, SMEs, and startups. It centralizes information for easy access to multiple users or staff working for the same or different organizations’ purposes.

    In fact, you need to configure your access permissions based on who you want to access and edit the knowledge base. 

    Bottom line:

    Bitrix24, a free social enterprise platform, provides calendars, group chat, workgroups, and other relevant collaboration tools. It is a cohesive platform that manages several aspects of everyday tasks and operations.

    It is a software program that aids you in optimizing your sales funnel, growing your business, and administering your projects.


  17. myBase

    myBase Logo

    myBase

    Text, Images, Videos, and Document Management

    Rating: 5/5

  18. myBase contains the below-listed imperative features:

    • User-friendly interface
    • Information organization in tree-structured outline form
    • Content categorization using hierarchical labels
    • Support large files but less than 2 GB
    • High-end security functions
    • Supports HTML/rich text formatting and editing
    • Assign customizable icons for different file types

    myBase

    myBase is an open source knowledge-based software system that efficiently captures and stores documents, images, emails, webpages, etc., irrespective of their length or format. 

    The resulting outcome of the information captured usually is a zip compressed file and structures decently in the tree-structured outline form. 

    Bottom line:

    myBase helps you streamline all the information at one point and utilize it efficiently whenever needed. Here, you can intuitively manage the complete information related to your organization, administer your internal knowledge, and share it with your associates.


  19. LogicalDOC

    LogicalDOC Logo

    LogicalDOC

    Business To Gain Control Over Document Management

    Rating: 4.0/5

LogicalDOC provides robust features listed below for easy collaboration and management:

  • Search documents based on the search queries
  • Sanctions local file storage
  • The necessary statistical and standard report is generated
  • Highly secured. As the documents and folders can be password protected
  • Includes event log. In this way, you can view the details of the changes done in the documents
  • Compatible with HTTP, SOAP & RESTFUL, WebDAV, and CMIS protocols
LogicalDOC

LogicalDOC is a free and open source knowledge management system licensed under the GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL) version 3. It is a community edition and usually contains the software code base accessible and publicly available for anyone intending to build a customized knowledge management system as per their business needs and efficiency. 

This open source software’s primary goal is to overcome the drawbacks of all your document management needs, including capturing, modifying, and sharing. In contrast, the person using the effective codebase deals with a variety of limitations to provide the perfect guidelines to overcome a particular drawback within the organization.

Bottom line:

LogicalDOC is a user-friendly interface that needs no training. It makes apt usage of high-end international standards and advanced technologies proficient enough to incorporate with your present software.

It is one of the best knowledge management software that proves to be an exceptional solution to all your document management complications.


Benefits of Using Open Source Software

Advantages
  1. It’s Free

    You know that the original code is free to use by being open source and relatively easy for developers to access more functionality in their projects or application development.

    However, in this case, time or money does come into action to build the open source knowledge base individually; or you need to hire an expert from your department to work for you.

  2. Fully Integrates with Your Existing Software

    Many businesses possess substantial benefits by currently adapting to use multiple applications and tools to have an integrated knowledge base for your business.  As a result, such platforms use this impressive step to choose the best integration support for the software or websites.

    By performing the integration with your existing software, it becomes relatively easy for you to perform the core installation or build your knowledge base software to grab additional knowledge.

  3. It Can Be Self-Hosted

    The most important question that arises in your mind is whether you would reply to your company’s process or operations or be dependent on any other open source knowledge base software to work for you?

    Many business owners’ best recommendation is to know that their management software for the knowledge base is self-hosted, making complete security on their platform.


Free vs Open source Knowledge Base: Which One is Better?

After considering the advantages and disadvantages of using the open source knowledge base software in your organization, we can ascertain which knowledge base is better – free or open source. Here, we present you with a clear understanding of this subject before you land on a concrete decision.

With open source KB, you are bound to limited features. This means that you can access very few features in the open source knowledge base. This software provides security to some extent. You need to access another plan to grab such security constraints.

Whereas free KB gives you more features,  and hence, you can benefit from its additional features. With this software, you can avail high-level security and perform customization to work as per your needs.

You can opt for CloudTutorial, a knowledge base platform that provides you with the best way to overcome these limitations.

CloudTutorial provides you:

It allows you and your customers to create multiple knowledge base articles with varied functionalities. The free version of the platform allows you to create 25 articles for one site. Isn’t it great?

  • SSL (HTTPS) hosting for your website:

When you use a subdomain of ours (e.g. https://yourname.cloudtutorial.com) HTTPS supports automatically with no set-up required.

  • A fully customized platform:

It allows businesses of different industries to get tailor-made FAQ pages, help desk, and SOP to share information. The platform can be customized with different themes, custom HTML/CSS, and custom contact forms to meet the needs.

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Want To Know More About CloudTutorial Knowledge Base Platform?

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FAQs
Knowledge management tools are the systems that organizations utilize for distributing data internally as well as externally. Examples of these tools are learning management systems, knowledge bases, and customer relationship systems.

A knowledge base is a technology that is employed to accumulate complex (structured and unstructured) information utilized by a system. The preliminary usage of the terminology was in association with the expert systems, which were the very first knowledge-based systems.

On the other hand, the source code is open-source software that inspects, modifies, and enhances anything. It is nothing but a technique of what developers or programmers have access to perform. It is the code that they can improve or manipulate to change how they intend their program or wiki software to work.

There are some things that you need to keep in mind while looking for best knowledge management software.Some of the questions are as follows:
  • Is the software cloud-based or on-site?
  • Does it have the latest software version?
  • Is the UI easy to understand?
  • What is the search functionality?
  • Does it offer external and internal knowledge sharing?

Conclusion

So, which is the best knowledge base and open source software that suits your needs?

If you want to have a powerful search helping users search questions and answers in one category or every language conveniently, you may use phpMyFAQ.However, if you are looking for free knowledge base software that enhances transparency and your team’s collaboration with less maintenance, contact CloudTutorial.

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