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Linux Reaches 1% Usage Share

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the hitslink-confirms-it dept.

Linux Business 414

je ne sais quoi writes "The April data is out for the Net Applications 'market share' survey of operating systems (more accurately referred to as a usage share). For the first time, Linux has reached 1%. This past month the Linux share increased by 0.12% which is well above the average monthly increase of 0.02%. Historically, the Net Applications estimate of market share has been lower than that of other organizations who measure this, but the abnormally large increase reported this month brings it closer to the median estimate of 1.11%. For other operating systems, Windows XP continued its slow decline by 0.64% to 62.21%, whereas Vista use is still increasing to 23.90%, but its rate of adoption is slowing. That is, this month's increase of 0.48% is well below the 12-month average increase of 0.78% and down from the peak rate of increase of 1.00% per month on average in January-February 2008. The total Windows share dropped to 87.90%. Mac OS use decreased slightly to 9.73% from 9.77%, but usage share of the iPhone and iPod Touch combined increased by 0.1%."

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414 comments

Boy oh boy! (5, Funny)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789007)

I can't wait! At this rate, 2024 will be the year of Linux on the Desktop!

Re:Boy oh boy! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789021)

At this rate, 2024 will be the year of Linux on the Desktop!

Hmm. At this rate, that's a bit optimistic.

Re:Boy oh boy! (1)

Hmmm2000 (1146723) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789477)

I question this data .. they have iPod and iPod Touch listed as operating systems . . .

Re:Boy oh boy! (1)

leamanc (961376) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789601)

Well, there is an iPhone OS. Hard to believe that, even as popular as the iPhone is, that it has as much "market share" as Linux. But even so, it should be listed as a derivative as Mac OS X.

Re:Boy oh boy! (1)

Gerzel (240421) | more than 4 years ago | (#27790047)

Well the truth to the matter is that these things don't measure market share exactly as there is user overlap.

One user could use Linux at his home office computer, Windows as a second or even dual boot game device. Techinically if they got a Console those are increasingly getting on the net and thus should count. Iphone and Ipods as well as other handhelds also are very common and fully qualify as Operating systems.

You have to seperate out the device to OS ratio, or at least take it into account.

I'd be more interested in knowing out of the full base of computer users how many use Linux vs how many use Windows. Those percentages would add up to more than 100% because many would use both.

Re:Boy oh boy! (-1, Troll)

Brian Gordon (987471) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789043)

Linux isn't really supposed to be popular. Most people would have terrible trouble trying to work Linux so it's kind of strange for them to be strutting their %

Re:Boy oh boy! (2, Insightful)

MistrBlank (1183469) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789101)

That's a lie.

Linux is whatever it is. Just because there is not a prime time desktop environment for the average person sitting at a keyboard does not mean it is not supposed to be or never will be.

Re:Boy oh boy! (2, Insightful)

meow27 (1526173) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789127)

that's why there is a big focus on making it "usable" for the average "i dont know a thing about computers" people

Re:Boy oh boy! (5, Interesting)

Diabolus Advocatus (1067604) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789177)

My girlfriends mother bought a laptop about two years ago. She struggled with Windows as she had never used a computer much before. I installed gOS and she's doing fantastic with it.

Just because you are used to Windows and find it hard to transition, don't blame the OS, blame yourself.

Re:Boy oh boy! (5, Funny)

A. B3ttik (1344591) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789255)

My girlfriends mother bought a laptop about two years ago.

Who do you think you're fooling with this?

Re:Boy oh boy! (5, Insightful)

orkybash (1013349) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789257)

I often wonder how easy a time people who are new to computing can have with Linux. It seems to me that re-learning can in many cases be a harder barrier to cross than learning.

Re:Boy oh boy! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789415)

don't blame the OS, blame yourself.

There is always some fuckwit who has to reply with this pearl of wisdom. Listen you moron, if it isn't easy for users they wont switch. If increasing Linux % share means faking a Windows Look & Feel, then thats what needs to be done. That is, if anybody cares about wooing Windows users.

The moment you tell someone "blame yourself" for not "getting" how to use any product you've just commited suicide. So yeah, enjoy the circle jerk on hitting 1%. Woo hoo !

Ferris...Ferris... (0, Redundant)

WED Fan (911325) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789623)

My girlfriends mother bought a laptop...

Oh yeah? My mom's girlfriend's brother's doctor had this friend who knew a guy that had a sister-in-law, in another town, that once used Linux that was given to her by the Rabbi of an ultra-orthodox Mormon sect in Bolivia who knew a guy that had a sister that dated Ferris Bueller before he got sick and passed out at 31 Flavors.

Re:Boy oh boy! (1)

jdbausch (1419981) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789947)

My girlfriends mother bought a laptop about two years ago. She struggled with Windows as she had never used a computer much before. I installed gOS and she's doing fantastic with it.

Just because you are used to Windows and find it hard to transition, don't blame the OS, blame yourself.

Well, it isn't just him, by these numbers, it is over 85% of people.

Re:Boy oh boy! (2, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789301)

Can you define "supposed to"? I've always thought the phrase "supposed to" was kind of weird and hard to say what it meant. Certainly there are people working on Linux on various levels who would like it to be popular, and are even working with the intent of making it popular.

Also, it's not at all strange for them to be strutting their market share. There is probably some market share (though surely above 1%) where Linux will reach a sort of critical mass, in which it will get mass recognition and better support from 3rd parties. Market share counts, and getting above 1% is a sort of milestone. I kind of remember Firefox and Safari each creeping above 1% in web usage statistics, and look at them now.

GIGO? (5, Insightful)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789141)

How do they come up with these numbers anyway? The jump from 0.90 to 1.02 is relatively large, as was the drop from 0.91 to 0.71 a few months ago. Do they have uncertainty estimates? Inquiring minds want to know.

Re:GIGO? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789209)

How do they come up with these numbers anyway?

87.3% of statistics are made up on the spot.

Re:GIGO? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789501)

sure its not 87.5%

Re:GIGO? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789879)

It's at 1.00% (+/- 1.15%)

Does eeePC even release Linux version anymore? (1)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 4 years ago | (#27790005)

How do they come up with these numbers anyway?

That's what I would like to know. Just a short while ago, if you opted for the linux version of one of their models, eeePC gave a nice SSD upgrade on their line of computers in lieu of Windows.

Now, the newer models don't have a Linux option (1000he and 1000hae). So I can't even get linux if I'm willing to pay (more than willing).

Re:Boy oh boy! (4, Insightful)

levell (538346) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789195)

I can't wait! At this rate, 2024 will be the year of Linux on the Desktop!

If it increases at 1 percentage point per year (which is what is has increased in the whole of its life so far), we'll reach 100% a lot later than 2024

Re:Boy oh boy! (1)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789249)

Note the rate of growth of the rate of growth.

A pair of rabbits will produce offspring fairly regularly. This does not mean that the number of rabbits grows at a linear rate.

Re:Boy oh boy! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789375)

Note the rate of growth of the rate of growth.

A pair of rabbits will produce offspring fairly regularly. This does not mean that the number of rabbits grows at a linear rate.

Well duh, he should had used fibonacci.

Re:Boy oh boy! (4, Funny)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789383)

A pair of rabbits will produce offspring fairly regularly. This does not mean that the number of rabbits grows at a linear rate.

Yeah, but we're talking about Jackalopes here. Not clear at all if their population growth follows a geometric progression.

Re:Boy oh boy! (1)

idontgno (624372) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789397)

Sweet, I see it!

That stupid differential equations class I took decade ago finally pays off!

Re:Boy oh boy! (1)

levell (538346) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789433)

A pair of rabbits will produce offspring fairly regularly. This does not mean that the number of rabbits grows at a linear rate.

You want us to out breed Windows users? We need to make contraception contravene the GPL!

Re:Boy oh boy! (4, Interesting)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789435)

Keep in mind that Linux is the OS used by Google across hundreds of thousands of their servers. How many people a day use their search, gmail, maps, and other services? Linux use is up, just not in the traditional desktop sense. In another year or two, you could probably get away with a slim Linux image that boots into Firefox, and use that for your basic needs if the work/home environment allowed for it.

what's the margin of error? (1)

nicolas.kassis (875270) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789017)

Could be an anomaly. I still think I'm the only one cool enough to use it.

Re:what's the margin of error? (5, Funny)

hey! (33014) | more than 4 years ago | (#27790051)

The margin of error is the numerical magnitude by which, within a specified degree of statistical certainty, the true value of a figure for a population may vary from a specific statistical estimate of of it. due to the effects of chance on the composition of the sample population used to calculate that estimate.

But that's not important now.

Slashdot formatting changes? (-1, Offtopic)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789067)

I'm far more interested into the baby-poop brown theme, ajaxy looking widgets, and the inability to see the # of posts on the front page.

How is this an improvement ?

But seriously folks (5, Insightful)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789073)

Should we really be including both Windows and iPhone in the same OS usage chart?

My John Deere riding mower does a bang-up job cutting my lawn (get the fuck off it), but it's not quite built for the same purpose as my around-town Escalade.

Re:But seriously folks (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789575)

All that John Deere really needs to do the same thing is a cupholder, spinning rims, and a small, flat surface for snorting coke.

Re:But seriously folks (1)

slyrat (1143997) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789587)

I agree. If they are going to show iPhone usage (.5% or so) then why don't they show blackberry, simian, and other phone os's? There are certainly enough to match what iPhone started at in this chart.

Re:But seriously folks (1)

janeuner (815461) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789639)

May I present two packages:
1) Dumb Cell Phone ($0), Desktop PC ($600), Wireless Service ($35/mo), and Wired Internet ($30/mo). They can make calls anywhere, but they have to go home to check their email. Total cost: $600 up front, $65 a month.

2) Smart Phone ($200), No PC ($0), No wired Internet ($0), Wireless service with data ($50/mo). Suddenly, their email goes with them. If they opt for a computer, they can get a laptop and tether.

Yes, Windows and iPhone belong on the same usage chart. It shows that the average consumer is finally figuring out that option 2 makes a lot more sense.

Re:But seriously folks (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789911)

May I present two packages:
1) Dumb Cell Phone ($0), Desktop PC ($600), Wireless Service ($35/mo), and Wired Internet ($30/mo). They can make calls anywhere, but they have to go home to check their email. Total cost: $600 up front, $65 a month.

2) Smart Phone ($200), No PC ($0), No wired Internet ($0), Wireless service with data ($50/mo). Suddenly, their email goes with them. If they opt for a computer, they can get a laptop and tether.

Yes, Windows and iPhone belong on the same usage chart. It shows that the average consumer is finally figuring out that option 2 makes a lot more sense.

With a majority using Windows XP, a sizable fraction of the remainder using Vista, and most of the rest using other traditional computer platforms rather than any of the mobile platforms on the list, I hardly see how the conclusion you draw about "the average user" is even remotely justified by the source data.

Re:But seriously folks (5, Insightful)

TheModelEskimo (968202) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789869)

Windows is indeed a lot like an Escalade. An overpriced, bloated, and inefficient showcase of false beauty.

And I guess the iPhone is a lot like a John Deere riding mower, too. People buy it for the brand prestige, then get angry when their neighbor goes out and buys one the next day. Because everybody knows your neighbor is a jerk.

Economy and No-Man's Land (3, Insightful)

A. B3ttik (1344591) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789077)

There was an article a while back surmising that the downturn in the American Economy would cause more Linux adoption.

I imagine that is partially the case, but I bet it's also because the Windows folks are currently in No-Man's Land. They've stopped selling/supporting XP, some people are too afraid or unwilling to switch to Vista (I'm one of them), and Windows 7 is still at least months away. With all of these factors, some are seeing it as the perfect time to take the plunge.

Re:Economy and No-Man's Land (4, Interesting)

PrescriptionWarning (932687) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789253)

A friend of mine recently had a similar decision to make. His XP PC he's had since college finally kicked the bucket, as in hardware failure, and he didn't have the money nor the real need to purchase a new computer with Vista at the tune of $500. So I ended up helping him out, sold him my old PC from early college years which was similar in specs to his old one, only I stuck Ubuntu on it and sold it for $50. Now he's able to get back to his basic computer needs, which are mostly web surfing, email, and MP3 playback/syncing. It works with his video iPod and works with his digital camera which for some reason doesn't work on his girlfriend's windows laptop. Not too shabby I'd say.

Inexplicable statistical variations (3, Insightful)

TheCycoONE (913189) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789089)

The site claims that the statistics meet quality assurance guidelines, including that there are no major statistical variations that are inexplicable. They fail to state on the site (that I saw) what is the margin of error in their evaluation, but it seems that this is a major statistical variation, and I'm wondering what their explanation is.

Re:Inexplicable statistical variations (5, Insightful)

je ne sais quoi (987177) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789923)

Hi there, submitter here. One certainly wonders what the statistical variability is, it's probably pretty high for month to month data. That's what I was trying to do by reporting the 12 month average increase or decrease. I posted a chart of that data here [photobucket.com] . Rather than look at percent usage share, this is the percent change in usage share for a given month. If it's positive, it means the OS grew, if it's negative it means it shrank.

Ultimately this is one of those things like political polling data, nobody can really know what the actual answer is. What's interesting here is that there are big bumps in all the OSes, which is the random error, but if you look at the averages, they follow what you might expect. That is, XP stopped increasing a long time ago, but didn't start to shrink (go negative) until Vista was released. Vista really is slowing in its growth, you can clearly see the peak in the average data right at Jan or Feb 2008. For linux, the latest little uptick is this newest data, which in itself is probably insignificant (as is the arbitrary 1% mark), but what is significant is that linux on average is enjoying positive growth as there's more upticks than downticks, as is OS X.

In related news... (1)

ioshhdflwuegfh (1067182) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789113)

...Linux reaches 3% of usage share among slashdot users... but seriously, what's the figure?

Re:In related news... (1)

bigjarom (950328) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789205)

what's the figure?

Based on reading all the posts, you'd think it was about 90%, but I suspect it's closer to 3%.

Re:In related news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789549)

My geek friends use either linux or a mac os x but mostly mac os x. Most of them have an iphone as well. I live somewhere in Europe. You'dd think apple is immensely popular, but looking over the stats of some non tech related websites I run (fairly high traffic), Windows is somewhere near 97%, followed by mobile devices (nokias, blackberries, even lgs score more hits than the iphone).
I wouldn't be surprised if next month linux has 0.50% share.

Re:In related news... (1)

vux984 (928602) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789741)

...Linux reaches 3% of usage share among slashdot users... but seriously, what's the figure?

That's a really interesting question. What do you mean by usage? As in "use linux as the primary on the desktop"? That might well be 3%.

For example, me, I'm posting and do most of my desktop work on Vista Ultimate x64. (I need windows for a lot of what I do. I use Virtual PC with WinXP, Win2k, and Win98 VMs on my desktop as well.)

However, I do have linux on a laptop that my wife mostly uses, and my home office server is ubuntu server with 3 VMware VMs running on it (centos, debian, & windows server 2008). And I dabble with other distros on a spare pc...

So I use linux far and away beyond having a live CD that I booted up from once and consider myself a linux user... but still my desktop is vista, and I spend most of my 'desktop' time in Vista. Which side would I count towards?

I'd expect to be counted as Windows. I suspect there are a lot of bonafide linux users like me.

I wonder how it breaks down... (4, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789173)

When you look at browser numbers, it is reasonably doable to get a sense of where the browsers are being used. IE6 spikes during working hours, while FF and friends increase on nights and weekends. Fairly obviously, there is a huge difference in usage rates between workplaces, especially big ones, and the home/small business market.

I'd be curious to know how Linux's market share breaks down in those terms. Is the 1% growth assimilation of the more or less geeky home/school user? Is it j. average user with a netbook or machine set up for them by somebody else? Did a few large corporations shift 250,000 call-center seats in order to save a few bucks on what are basically just terminal emulators?

I'd be curious to know what the data actually say; because you can tell the story either way: You can say "Linux will make it in the home setting first" and argue that the home has relatively fast app turnover, few critical legacy apps, and tends to suffer from viruses/spyware/malware because it lacks professional admins. On the other hand, you could argue "Linux will make it on the corporate side first" because they have highly standardized hardware and software needs, so there are fewer driver issues and "why isn't aunt maybell's scrapbooking shareware working" issues, and professional admins can handle the tricky configuration bits. Whenever something can be argued either way, that is a sign that you need actual data.

Re:I wonder how it breaks down... (1)

value_added (719364) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789421)

I'd be curious to know how Linux's market share breaks down in those terms.

I'd settle for knowing why the term "market share" is used at all given the inherent ambiguities.

Re:I wonder how it breaks down... (1)

Aphoxema (1088507) | more than 4 years ago | (#27790033)

When people use the term "Market Share" for anything I judo-chop them over the back of the head.

Methodology? How do they measure that? (5, Insightful)

wowbagger (69688) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789269)

I get very suspicious of any site that doesn't go into detail on their methodology for making a claim like this.

Especially when the site seems to be a web advertiser.

Have they corrected for the fact that Linux users are more likely to be able to use a variety of ad blocking and filtering tools, and thus may not be showing up in their statistics?

I always try to be clear about exactly what I am measuring - what are these guys measuring? When they say "market share", what "market" are they referring to? "Users who see our ads?" "Users visiting this set of sites (many of which refuse to work with That Which Is Not Internet Explorer)?"

Absent a statement of exactly of WHAT this is 1%, and a statement of methodologies used to make that measurement, this is a very questionable number.

About Our Market Share Statistics (1)

rs232 (849320) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789661)

"I get very suspicious of any site that doesn't go into detail on their methodology for making a claim like this"

'We use a unique methodology [hitslink.com] for collecting this data. We collect data from the browsers of site visitors to our exclusive on-demand network of live stats customers...'

Re:Methodology? How do they measure that? (1)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789931)

Have they corrected for the fact that Linux users are more likely to be able to use a variety of ad blocking and filtering tools, and thus may not be showing up in their statistics?

How exactly do you think they should correct for that? Just give Linux more market share?

How many studies have come out that estimate the percentage of Linux users who mask their identity while browsing? It's been my experience that people using Linux want to advertise that fact wherever they can, including user agent strings. If they are solely depending on advertising for this then that's one issue (they would be measuring the usage share among users who view ads), but it would make a lot more sense to use a non-advertisting network, like they allude to in their "About Our Market Share Statistics" summary.

We collect data from the browsers of site visitors to our exclusive on-demand network of live stats customers. The data is compiled from approximately 160 million visitors per month. The information published is an aggregate of the data from this network of hosted website statistics.

That sounds like they have customers using their analytics software [hitslink.com] , and they collect information from them. They probably also collect information from their survey software [surveyware.com] . In fact, I don't see much of advertising services at all. One of the data points they collect is search engine referrals, they can't get that data if they only track requests that are made for ads. A request for an ad served up on a page does not include information about the search terms that were used to reach the parent page.

Isn't this a fight over the past? (1)

dtolman (688781) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789273)

All I read about is that how in the future your browser will run your apps, and how that handheld devices are the real future of computers in the wider market.

Does this "war" even matter anymore? Twenty years from now, will anyone care what OS is running Chrome 15.2?

Depends on new DOM (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789405)

Does this "war" even matter anymore? Twenty years from now, will anyone care what OS is running Chrome 15.2?

It depends on what W3C and WaSP recommendations get published and implemented between now and then. There's still no widely implemented DOM for 3D graphics, nor is there a DOM for reading events from joysticks or home theater remote controls.

I used to be in that 1% (5, Interesting)

pablo_max (626328) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789303)

I consider myself to be a bit more advanced than the typical computer user..maybe not compared to the slashdot crowd.
I had Ubuntu(gusty) on a partition for a long time. For about 3 months for so I used it as my primary partition. I liked the look and feel for the most part.
I even enjoyed learning the command line stuff to get my screen rez correct..it took a long while to set that damn thing to 1366x766! But, once I figured it out, that was that.
In the end, I went back to Windows and that is where I will stay and here's why...
Bluetooth!
At that time, my wife lived overseas and we used skype to talk. None of my Bluetooth dongles would work in the slightest with Linux. I tried and tried and tried, but could not make it work..and hell.. at that time my job was maintaining and creating bluetooth RF test cases!!!!
I was so sick of having to boot to windows every time i needed to "do" something I said forgot it..im sticking with windows.

bluetooth RF engineer and Ubuntu (1)

rs232 (849320) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789597)

"None of my Bluetooth dongles would work in the slightest with Linux. I tried and tried and tried, but could not make it work..and hell.. at that time my job was maintaining and creating bluetooth RF test cases!!!!"

I am totally gobsmasked that a bluetooth RF test engineer can't get it to work under Ubuntu. Did you try and ask on the forums?

Re:bluetooth RF engineer and Ubuntu (5, Informative)

Erikderzweite (1146485) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789981)

To be fair, bluetooth audio wasn't simple in Linux (and I know what I'm talking about, I've been using a bluetooth headset for some years with Linux now).
First you had to use snd-bt-sco driver with btsco program, you couldn't avoid some console work, had to explicitly start btsco to make it work. But it did work pretty stable, however.
Then, around bluez-3, they have started using ALSA for bluetooth, you had to put your dongle ID in .asoundrc and you were in trouble using Skype on 64-bit systems (at least so was I, had to copy some libs from 32-bit chroot to make it work).
Only about a month ago, with pulseaudio-0.9.15 and blueman project it has become possible for me to set up and use my headset the easy way, exactly as I want it to work, and that's without knowing its ID, without console fiddling and so on.
You turn it on and pulseaudio reroutes earlier chosen sound streams to the headset, even if it's already playing. I can pick up/end twinkle calls with headset's button, blueman's killer feature for me.
Skype on my 64-bit system has trouble with it though, but they promise a fix soon (doesn't matter for my family because we use SIP with ekiga/twinkle anyway).
Of course, there has been bluesoeil for Linux, but I haven't used it.

Re:I used to be in that 1% (1, Flamebait)

janeuner (815461) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789699)

Bluetooth in Windows XP:
    1) Find Drivers
    2) Install Drivers
    3) Reboot
    4) Plug in Dongle
Bluetooth in Ubuntu:
    1) Plug in Dongle /Got a generic bluetooth dongle off ebay. Don't know why it works, don't care to find out.

Re:I used to be in that 1% (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789921)

Bluetooth in Mac OS X:
        1) What's a dongle?

Start using K&M.

BTW, I thought we just discussed the other day that bluetooth dongles emulate USB HID devices. I call bullshit if it worked that easily on Linux without such emulation, and it would work just as easily on Windows.

Re:I used to be in that 1% (1)

dido (9125) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789755)

Counter anecdotal evidence. I've never had any serious trouble with bluetooth dongles on Linux. My current machine (a HP Pavilion dv6810us laptop) actually has bluetooth built in (appearing as a USB device) and I've never had any trouble using it. In fact, I was surprised to see it just work. For a some time I was actually unaware that my laptop even had a Bluetooth module, and bought a dongle because I often have to tether my laptop to my cellphone to connect to the Internet in strange places. Until one day, I tried to connect having forgotten to plug in the dongle, and was surprised to get a link to my cellphone anyway. Later, a look at lsusb revealed 'Bus 004 Device 002: ID 03f0:171d Hewlett-Packard' which turned out to be a Bluetooth module built into the laptop itself... Before this current laptop I bought several Bluetooth dongles over the years, and never once ran into one that gave me particular trouble under Linux. Well, admittedly I've never tried to use a Bluetooth headset with my machine, but for sending files to and from my cellphone and PDA, and for getting a 3G wireless link over my phone, I've never ever had any serious trouble with Linux Bluetooth, with any of the half dozen or so dongles I bought over the past four years.

Re:I used to be in that 1% (1)

Ant P. (974313) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789773)

Oh man, that brings back nightmares. I could figure out how to set up a winmodem on Slackware back in 2002 with zero linux knowledge, but the state of BlueZ in debian is a sick, sadistic practical joke. I've wasted half a year trying to get a fscking keyboard to work and got nowhere.

Re:I used to be in that 1% (3, Informative)

Aphoxema (1088507) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789961)

Gutsy had poor bluetooth support. Hardy had decent bluetooth support. Intrepid broke bluetooth support, I skipped over it for Jaunty which works perfectly.

Sometimes it takes a while to get things right, but I can absolutely assure you they've got it crystal clear now. I can pair my bluetooth mouse on a new installation in seconds and I use the earpiece thing I use for my phone to listen to music whenever I remember to charge it.

Not a very reliable conclusion (3, Insightful)

DaveV1.0 (203135) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789389)

We collect data from the browsers of site visitors to our exclusive on-demand network of live stats customers.

Non-random source data

Also, the linked site does not appear to differentiate between general purpose computers and appliances, which could skew the results. Devices like the G1 from T-mobile and Nokia internet tablets, which are not bought for having Linux, but rather for the functionality they provide, should probably not be listed under Linux.

Re:Not a very reliable conclusion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789453)

Bollox. Most people run windows because they buy a PC that happens to have windows pre-installed. They're not buying windows and then a box to run it on. Maybe we should remove PCs from the list?

Re:Not a very reliable conclusion (1)

Martin Blank (154261) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789527)

Most people run Windows because they're comfortable with it. I've been told by several friends that they bought netbooks and then installed Windows on them because 'Linux is old and isn't compatible with anything.' Nothing I said could dislodge them of these notions.

This is the year of... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789393)

...the Linux Tea Cosey.

the power of the pre-loading (5, Insightful)

Locutus (9039) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789419)

back in the old days( ~1994 ), IBM was fortunate enough to find one or two top OEMs in Germany who couldn't be paid off by Microsoft and accepted the technically superior IBM OS/2 as their primary preloaded OS. In one short year, OS/2 had 25% marketshare in Germany.

Preloading is the game and Microsoft knows this and is willing to pay out millions in marketing kickbacks to make sure a Microsoft OS is what is preloaded instead of a Linux distro. Remember the ClassmatePC deal in Nigeria? Microsoft got caught purchasing the favor of replacing the preloaded Mandriva with Windows XP once they were delivered. Egypt took tens of millions and became a Windows-only government at the expense of the OLPC MOU for a million units. And that is just the tip of the iceberg. Microsoft just redirected billions of "R&D" funds and you know where those will likely end up? Most likely place is in the pockets of companies looking to preload Android, Ubuntu Netbook Remix, or other Linux products. IMO.

It's the preloads. So when you hear the press complaining about Linux as it came from the OEM and not about installation problems, it's game-on and most likely game-over for MSFT.

LoB

netbooks reverting to Windows (5, Interesting)

bcrowell (177657) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789431)

The really troubling trend, from my point of view as an OSS fanboy, is that netbooks are reverting to Windows. I teach at a community college. A year or two ago, one my students showed me his eeePC running Linux, which was the first eee I'd seen. This year my wife saw a eee with Linux in Target for $270. "Wow," I thought, "Linux in Target!" I bought her a eee with Linux (not the Target one, but a $400-ish model, via Amazon) as a birthday present, but the wifi was misconfigured. Asus tech support told me the wrong card was installed, and there was no way to fix it in software. We returned it and gave up on the netbook idea. If you look at the reviews on Amazon, you'll see tons of customers complaining about problems with their eee/Linux boxes. Now when I walk through the cafeteria at work, I see lots of students using netbooks, but when I sneak a peek over their shoulders, it's always Windows. IMO Asus really dropped the ball by not getting the quality of their Linux configuration right. They were supposed to be the flagship of the new wave of Linux on netbooks, and it just didn't happen. I guess this kind of thing is just expensive to get right.

It will be interesting to see if this predicted new wave of ARM-based netbooks really comes to market, and whether they really have a decent price-to-performance ratio. If so, it would be great, because Windows doesn't run on ARM, and if the price gets down to $100-200, there's really no room for profit for MS even if they did make an ARM version of Windows. But so far, the history of netbooks has all been bait and switch. They keep saying they're going to have them at price x, but they're always really at price 2x. Performance is still a problem, too. I'd hate for people to get the impression that Linux is slow and crappy, simply because netbooks are underpowered to run Firefox/js/flash.

misconfigured wifi (0, Troll)

rs232 (849320) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789491)

"I bought her a eee with Linux (not the Target one, but a $400-ish model, via Amazon) as a birthday present, but the wifi was misconfigured. Asus tech support told me the wrong card was installed, and there was no way to fix it in software"

What company did you buy it from. Why would they sell it misconfigured. What make and model exactly ?

Re:misconfigured wifi (1)

Phroggy (441) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789807)

One imagines it was made by Asus and sold by Amazon.com, since that's what he said. They sold it misconfigured, because Asus apparently doesn't have a QA department, or something.

Re:netbooks reverting to Windows (3, Insightful)

SerpentMage (13390) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789563)

As much as people like to say that this is a price issue, it really isn't. Otherwise, why on earth would OSX be near the 10% range? Why on earth would iPhone, and iPod touch be even registering on the radar? It is not cost.

What matters to the end user is functionality. They want to be able to get things done and that means flash, executables, etc, etc.

On Windows everything just works because it has momentum. On OSX people KNOW that it is OSX and expect things to be different (eg commercial Think Different HINT HINT...) And there are applications that get things done for users that are based on OSX.

Linux is more problematic. First there is very little commercialware support. THus the end user has to figure things out for themselves. And there is very little support among hardware vendors, meaning the end user has to figure things out.

The end result is that Linux will remain a niche product. I look at 1% and think, great in 2100 we might even get drivers to work... Yippeee...

Re:netbooks reverting to Windows (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789611)

It's a pity, really. Asus managed to poorly support one of the lousier distros on the market as their Linux EEE offering. I just hope that they haven't spoiled it for the next wave of Ubuntu NR and Moblin based stuff.

Re:netbooks reverting to Windows (1)

Aphoxema (1088507) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789871)

Get a Wind U100 and install Ubuntu Netbook Remix on it, it runs so incredibly perfectly it's startling to think any other netbook has any problems with it.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834152092 [newegg.com]

That's the one I have, I even managed to put a mini bluetooth adapter thing inside it; there's a part of the spraypaint shield that's left clear and mine even provided a wiring harness taped inside for after-market installation I cut up and used. I glued the adapter on the unpainted surface, put a layer of foil on it and taped over it and it works perfectly.

Microsoft Funded (3, Interesting)

Ynot_82 (1023749) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789511)

according to Boycott Novell
http://boycottnovell.com/2009/02/03/net-applications-big-lie/ [boycottnovell.com]

Make your own mind up, though

Re:Microsoft Funded (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789721)

Yeah I'm sure those idiots are telling the truth.

Re:Microsoft Funded (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789761)

The most interesting thing about market share numbers is that Microsoft loves to claim linux numbers are at 1% or so up until their shareholder meetings. Then you see wildly different numbers such as 60% of particular server markets being Linux.

AMAZING. (1)

Aphoxema (1088507) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789667)

Oh shit! Time for Adobe to properly support Flash on Linux!

Re:AMAZING. (1)

Warlord88 (1065794) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789813)

And maybe they also have to start thinking about several of their products like Photoshop and Dreamweaver.

Re:AMAZING. (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789837)

> Oh shit! Time for Adobe to properly support Flash on Linux!

Nevermind Linux. They should at least support it properly under Windows first.

Dual Booting? (1)

Chameleon Man (1304729) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789675)

Many of us linux users alternate between using linux and windows on the same machine. How does that factor into the usage chart?

Doubling every two years (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789751)

If you look at the trend, Linux's share is roughly doubling every two years, which is an impressive rate. It indicates that all the talk about how Linux has "failed" on the desktop is premature, if not flat-out wrong. It also suggests that people who lamenting the non-existent "year of the desktop" should chill for a bit. Linux is growing just fine, but it's hard to notice that when the starting market share is so small. If it keeps growing, it's going to become more more noticeable.

Month Share
Apr-09 1.02
Mar-09 0.90
Feb-09 0.89
Jan-09 0.83
Dec-08 0.85
Nov-08 0.83
Oct-08 0.71
Sep-08 0.91
Aug-08 0.92
Jul-08 0.82
Jun-08 0.80
May-08 0.68
Apr-08 0.63
Mar-08 0.61
Feb-08 0.65
Jan-08 0.64
Dec-07 0.63
Nov-07 0.57
Oct-07 0.50
Sep-07 0.49
Aug-07 0.47
Jul-07 0.46
Jun-07 0.43
May-07 0.43
Apr-07 0.41
Mar-07 0.40
Feb-07 0.42
Jan-07 0.35
Dec-06 0.37
Nov-06 0.37
Oct-06 0.39
Sep-06 0.40
Aug-06 0.47
Jul-06 0.44
Jun-06 0.38

I'm proud to be a 1%er (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27789859)

I use Linux for many reasons, the main one is that it's free. If I had to use other OS's I would have to spend a lot of money to use the equivalent applications that I use in Linux. so in the end FTW! I'll always use Linux!

No. (3, Interesting)

wandazulu (265281) | more than 4 years ago | (#27789965)

Maybe they go by web logs, but I and my friends have many Linux-based devices; I have a TomTom GPS, my friends have Linksys WRT(Can't remember the num) routers, and I do a lot of work on Linux servers that are completely headless and "somewhere in the cloud".

Linux is bigger than anyone can monitor effectively; so many Linux machines will never touch a web page yet they do useful stuff every day.

BTW, do they break it out by platform? If so, I wonder how many people like me are out there using Linux on a PS3.

+ or - 1% (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27790019)

With a error margin of + or - 1%
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