Linux Market Share
In the course of a normal work day I take several little breaks to check the news. On my list of news sites are Slashdot, Linux Journal and Linux Today. Frequently I see something that gives me an idea for an article. Sometimes I even find an article on a topic that I was planning to write about myself. Such was the case today when I came across this well-written piece from the Royal Pingdom Blog referenced on Linux Today. It’s about the failure of desktop Linux to break the 1% market share barrier, and I confess that it left me a little depressed. But I decided to add my two cents on the subject anyhow.
Here’s a chart showing the market share of the major OS distributions over the past year, courtesy of statcounter.com, the same place from which the author got his data:
The Pingdom article suggested that there were several reasons for Linux not having gained greater market share than it has:
- there are too many distributions,
- there are too many GUIs,
- the various Linux desktop products are not polished enough,
- consistency and usability issues exist with the various Linux distros, and
- the various suppliers of Linux distributions focus too much on heavy duty tech-savvy users, and not enough on normal everyday users.
I pretty much agree with all of these points. Except...
I use Windows, and I use Mac OS X. The Windows UI (XP and Vista, more than Windows 7) is notoriously inconsistent. Polished? Not a word I usually use to describe a Windows product.
Mac OSX? It’s UI is certainly different than Windows, and it seems to be more consistent than XP. It’s also less crash-prone. But...
I’d hold my Mint 9 Gnome desktop up against either of those other two in terms of stability, constancy, and that metric which has not yet been mentioned: security. Usability is harder to judge because that is determined more by one’s familiarity with the product than anything else.
Which brings me to my final point: I think the main reason that Linux has not penetrated the desktop market more than it has is because people tend to stick with what they are used to. So, I guess I’ll just have to get used to being depressed, because people are what they are, and learning a new OS is just is not that high on most folks’ “things to do” list.
Fast/Flexible Linux OS Recovery
On Demand Now
In this live one-hour webinar, learn how to enhance your existing backup strategies for complete disaster recovery preparedness using Storix System Backup Administrator (SBAdmin), a highly flexible full-system recovery solution for UNIX and Linux systems.
Join Linux Journal's Shawn Powers and David Huffman, President/CEO, Storix, Inc.
Free to Linux Journal readers.Register Now!
- Sony Settles in Linux Battle
- Download "Linux Management with Red Hat Satellite: Measuring Business Impact and ROI"
- Libarchive Security Flaw Discovered
- Profiles and RC Files
- Maru OS Brings Debian to Your Phone
- Understanding Ceph and Its Place in the Market
- Snappy Moves to New Platforms
- The Giant Zero, Part 0.x
- Git 2.9 Released
- Astronomy for KDE
With all the industry talk about the benefits of Linux on Power and all the performance advantages offered by its open architecture, you may be considering a move in that direction. If you are thinking about analytics, big data and cloud computing, you would be right to evaluate Power. The idea of using commodity x86 hardware and replacing it every three years is an outdated cost model. It doesn’t consider the total cost of ownership, and it doesn’t consider the advantage of real processing power, high-availability and multithreading like a demon.
This ebook takes a look at some of the practical applications of the Linux on Power platform and ways you might bring all the performance power of this open architecture to bear for your organization. There are no smoke and mirrors here—just hard, cold, empirical evidence provided by independent sources. I also consider some innovative ways Linux on Power will be used in the future.Get the Guide