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Practical Guide to the Open Brand
Copyright © 2002 The Open Group


The Open Brand is signified by the "X" Device which can be associated with and used in relation to IT systems that have been certified by The Open Group as being fully conformant to one or more specific defined sets of functionality known as Product Standards. Its use is governed by the Open Brand Trademark License Agreement (TMLA). Anyone wishing to certify a product, or products, and use the "X" Device must first sign the Open Brand Trademark License Agreement and thereby "warrant and represent" that any products they certify will fully conform to the identified Product Standard(s) and will continue to do so.

An Open Brand Certificate is issued for each Certified Product and an entry is made in the Register of Open Brand Certified Products which can be found at A single product may be certified as conformant to more than one Product Standard.

The Open Brand cannot, and does not, attempt to dictate the content of any transaction in any specific supplier/customer relationship. Nor does it attempt to force a purchaser to buy, or a supplier to supply, items that the customer does not require.

The Open Brand provides the mechanism through which the supplier will provide a fully conformant product in accordance with the terms of the Open Brand Trademark License Agreement, if a buyer wishes to procure a product that is guaranteed to conform to a Product Standard.

The rules are very simple. The Open Brand applies to a product or product range marketed by the supplier, and means that if a configuration matching a particular Product Standard is ordered from that product range it will be delivered in full, and all the conditions of the Open Brand Trademark License Agreement will apply to it.

Anyone buying a Certified Product is guaranteed that:

Product Standards relate to one or more of the following:

The detailed requirements for conformance are identified in each Product Standard. They include both implementation detail and any specific testing requirements. The Product Standard refers to formal standards, Technical Standards, or other standards or specifications that have been adopted or defined by The Open Group and included in its Standards Information Base (SIB), accessible at

The Standards Information Base forms part of The Open Group Architecture Framework (TOGAF), which is explained at

It is important to note that one Product Standard can include another Product Standard, and that additional conformance requirements may be included as a requirement within a more comprehensive Product Standard.

Certification of a product requires that it conforms to the requirements of the Product Standard. The Conformance Statement (see Conformance Statements) states precisely how the specific product conforms. The process is shown in The Path to the Open Brand.

Figure: The Path to the Open Brand

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