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Difference between CFD Direct and ESI?

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Old   November 3, 2015, 07:01
Default Difference between CFD Direct and ESI?
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I noticed that there is an and an, and that two companies offer training, CFD Direct and ESI? Whats the difference? Is one better than the other?
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Old   November 7, 2015, 19:17
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Greetings gigliagarf,

A bit of history on this topic is explained here:
Another bit is explained here:

Essentially it sums up to this:
  • is for the OpenFOAM Foundation, which handles the public releases of OpenFOAM as open source software. CFD Direct ( is the main company who is handling the direct work for the OpenFOAM Foundation.
    • The reason for this is essentially because the original author of FOAM (the predecessor of OpenFOAM) is Henry Weller (who now works at CFD Direct) and was the head of development of OpenFOAM at OpenCFD until he left OpenCFD/ESI in 2014.
  • is for the official enterprise edition of OpenFOAM. It's done by OpenCFD (part of the ESI Group) and mostly develops OpenFOAM for the enterprise customers. This company is the owner of the OpenFOAM trade mark.
    • The source code is made available publicly whenever they are able to do so, but support is given only to their own enterprise clients and to the OpenFOAM Foundation, at least as far as I know.
    • Their repository is made available here:
    • The code is integrated in the OpenFOAM Foundation releases as time permits from all parties (including the community).
Still confused? Well, look at other known examples in the open source world:
  • RedHat:
    • RHEL is RedHat's Enterprise Linux distribution, available only to paying customers. It provides stable releases to their enterprise customers who don't want to be bothered with installing a new operating system within a time frame of around 10 years.
    • Fedora is the open source forefront of development that is partially supported by RedHat and another part by the community. It provides the bleeding edge of open source software technology. Developments done in Fedora are brought into RHEL when they are mature enough.
    • CentOS is the public open source distribution that is forked from RHEL and is mostly maintained by the community. It has received official assistance from RedHat a few months ago, so that the project could always have a safety net in case the community comes into to legal or hardware trouble.
  • OwnCloud:
  • Qt:
    • - Community edition of Qt, maintained by the Qt Company, a wholly owned subsidiary of Digia Plc
    • - Digia Plc, who provides the enterprise edition of Qt.
As for your final question:
Originally Posted by gigliagarf View Post
Is one better than the other?
From the perspective of how OpenFOAM demands attention to all details in everything... It's very hard to give you an accurate response.
With a 100% certainty I can say that both are Awesome! But so are most companies that work with OpenFOAM technology ... and those that aren't yet, will be awesome as they gain more experience .
But stating if one is better than the other is not exactly possible. Each one of them have their own strengths and weaknesses as any other company in the world.

Even if someone was able to create an official rating for the quality of service provided by all companies that develop technology based in OpenFOAM, it's very likely that each company would always have its own strength that would likely be unmatched by most other companies

As for if you're looking for training, it's up to you to decide who to choose, since both OpenCFD and CFD Direct offer official training in using OpenFOAM. Have a look at their training offerings, since as I mentioned before, each one have their own strengths as their websites will show you.

Also keep in mind that there are a lot of other places you can get training from:

Best regards,
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