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Thread: How large is Linux compared to Windows?

  1. #1
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    How large is Linux compared to Windows?

    Taking into account India and China, and the rest of the third world, what proportion of the world uses Linux in general and Ubuntu in particular. And, would it be fair to include the huge proportion of people in China who use pirate copies of Windows? I think we should include them as Linux users as, if they were made to pay for Windows, most of them could well move over to a legitimately free operating system.

    What do the team think?

    Ampers


  2. #2
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    Re: How large is Linux compared to Windows?

    Smartphones and tablets are mostly Linux, despite the initial popularity of iPhones and such. If you include both in your calculations, along with servers and supercomputers, then Windows is down to about 20% with most of the rest being some form of Linux, mostly Android/Linux. That 20% will only get smaller as the chromebooks increase in popularity. Windows on the smartphone has low single-digit market share and appears to be decreasing.

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    Re: How large is Linux compared to Windows?

    And, would it be fair to include the huge proportion of people in China who use pirate copies of Windows? I think we should include them as Linux users as, if they were made to pay for Windows, most of them could well move over to a legitimately free operating system.
    I don't think that would be fair at all. They're using Windows, ergo they are Windows users.

    Lars, I know you're technically correct (the best kind of correct) in that Android uses the Linux kernel, but when people say 'Linux' they mostly mean 'GNU/Linux', and I think that Android is different enough not to count (please do correct me if I'm wrong, though - I'm a little fuzzy on this stuff).
    Please mark your thread as solved if you get a satisfactory solution to your problem.

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    Re: How large is Linux compared to Windows?

    @evilsoup: There's a recognition even in the non-technical communities that it is Linux that powers Android:

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/quora/20...-linux-kernel/

    However, there is also an awareness that the Linux that powers your servers and supercomputers is not quite the same as the Linux that runs your phone, your car's engine or your TV.

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    Re: How large is Linux compared to Windows?

    Quote Originally Posted by AmpersUK View Post
    ... people in China who use pirate copies of Windows? ...
    because people in Europe and Americas never use pirated software...

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    Re: How large is Linux compared to Windows?

    Quote Originally Posted by layers View Post
    because people in Europe and Americas never use pirated software...
    Here are two relevant quotes for that.

    "It's easier for our software to compete with Linux when there's piracy than when there's not,"
    http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortu.../23/100134488/

    "As long as they are going to steal it, we want them to steal ours. They'll get sort of addicted, and then we'll somehow figure out how to collect sometime in the next decade."
    http://news.cnet.com/2100-1023-212942.html

    Anyway, that race is soon over. Linux is on close to 80% of devices if you start counting smartphones, tablets, TVs, car motors, and other embedded devices. It's also dominant in the server / Internet space and basically owns the supercomputing market.

    It's just here on the desktop that there is even any struggle going on. And the chromebooks will help with that. All Red Hat or Canonical needs is one single major OEM to offer and promote Linux and it is game over.

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    Re: How large is Linux compared to Windows?

    Quote Originally Posted by layers View Post
    because people in Europe and Americas never use pirated software...
    Well i would guess at least 24% of china computers are running pirated copies of XP, based on this you dont do updates on a pirated copy of windows to my knowledge
    i realize part of that 24% is not pirated but how many pirated ones there are using NON-IE browsers which is why i say at least
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    Re: How large is Linux compared to Windows?

    Large enough to make Steve Ballmer lose his hair.

  9. #9
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    Re: How large is Linux compared to Windows?

    you dont do updates on a pirated copy of windows to my knowledge
    If you never let "Windows Genuine Advantage" onto your dodgy XP you will still get security updates but not updates to Office etc.
    ...or so I'm told!

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    Re: How large is Linux compared to Windows?

    Quote Originally Posted by AmpersUK View Post
    Taking into account India and China, and the rest of the third world, what proportion of the world uses Linux in general
    Assuming you're talking about desktop Linux (ie: not Android or servers) about 1% is the best estimate. It's been slowly edging up for a while, some counts now put it more like 2%.

    and Ubuntu in particular.
    Again, difficult to know for sure. Probably around 50% of all Linux users would be a reasonable estimate IMO.

    And, would it be fair to include the huge proportion of people in China who use pirate copies of Windows?
    Yes, they've chosen to use Windows over Linux, so they should be counted as Windows users. Nothing is stopping them installing Linux, except the fact they either don't know about it or don't want to. Either way the one thing they aren't is Linux users.

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