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Windows XP Falls Below 25% Market Share, Windows 8 Drops Slightly 336

Posted by Soulskill
from the year-of-something-on-the-somethingtop dept.
An anonymous reader writes: Despite support for Windows XP finally ending three months ago, the ancient OS has only now fallen below the 25 percent market share mark. To add to the bad news for Microsoft, after only nine full months of availability, its latest operating system version, Windows 8.1, has lost share for the first time. For desktop browser share, Chrome is up, taking mostly from Internet Explorer and Firefox. For mobile browsers, Safari continues to fall while Chrome maintains strong growth.
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Windows XP Falls Below 25% Market Share, Windows 8 Drops Slightly

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  • by MrLogic17 (233498) on Saturday August 02, 2014 @11:20PM (#47591729) Journal

    I read the very short article, so you don't have to.

    Windows is the bulk, at 91.68%, of that Windows 7 is 51.22%

    Mac is 6.64%

    And overall, Linux is 1.68%

  • by Travis Mansbridge (830557) on Saturday August 02, 2014 @11:29PM (#47591753)
    To be fair, this data is generated via pageviews. Since there are many computers running linux out there whose sole purpose is to serve data rather than consume it, that portion may be underrepresented here.
  • by Number42 (3443229) on Saturday August 02, 2014 @11:36PM (#47591785)
    Since we're talking about desktop market shares here, Linux's number isn't that far off. It doubtlessly dominates the server market alongside BSD, though.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 02, 2014 @11:50PM (#47591829)

    Microsoft just needs to make an OS that delivers what end-users actually want, with a solid XP emulator so people can continue to run their mission-critical stuff that still requires it.

    8 and 8.1 were arrogant attempts at pushing on to end-users a GUI that Microsoft thought they should want, for reasons that did not benefit the end-users at all but did benefit Microsoft quite a lot (in theory, that is).

    Microsoft can win by viewing end-users as its clients (heresy, I know), getting back in touch with what they want, and delivering. Until then, expect continued weirdness.

  • by grep -v '.*' * (780312) on Sunday August 03, 2014 @12:52AM (#47591997)

    The only idiots who like using those "apps" are the ones ... for whom the actual power of a desktop is apparently wasted.

    No, wait: I like Window 8. and I really, really like the interface formally known as Metro (ie, Metro.)

    I like to see the visuals of virtual blood as it splashes across the screen as all of the Metro apps scream in digital silence and die. (ie, you can ignore the errors.) And then I install a real start menu and I'm good to go! Steps:

    1: REMOVE Metro. (not disable, not hide; DIE.)

    1: See here. [winaero.com]

    Run PowerShell as Administrator.

    Show all
    Get-AppxPackage -AllUsers

    Kill currently-installed Metro apps for your ID.
    Get-AppxPackage -AllUsers | Remove-AppxPackage

    Kill Metro STAGED apps (Still gven to new users.)
    Get-AppXProvisionedPackage -online | Remove-AppxProvisionedPackage -online

    The only thing left is the Microsoft store itself, and all of the apps are online, so you can reinstall any Metro apps you miss having.

    2: REMOVE SilverLight from the WSUS update list (Ditto.)

    See here [superuser.com] Basically run:

    reg delete HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Silverlight /f
    reg delete HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Installer\Products\D7314F9862C648A4DB8BE2A5B47BE100 /f
    reg delete HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Classes\Installer\Products\D7314F9862C648A4DB8BE2A5B47BE100 /f
    reg delete HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\TypeLib\{283C8576-0726-4DBC-9609-3F855162009A} /f
    reg delete HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Paths\install.exe /f
    reg delete HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\AgControl.AgControl /f
    reg delete HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\AgControl.AgControl.5.1 /f
    reg delete HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\{89F4137D-6C26-4A84-BDB8-2E5A4BB71E00} /f
    rmdir /s /q "%ProgramFiles%\Microsoft Silverlight"
    rmdir /s /q "%ProgramFiles(x86)%\Microsoft Silverlight"

    3: Add a replacement start menu.

    I like this one [iobit.com], but there are others that are free, and still others that are cheap.

    4: And the final touch for those who just blindly follow along: Speed up your system by:

    Starting a CMD as administrator and run:
    rmdir /s /q %SystemDrive%\

    ...becuase if you're stupid enough to run random commands without knowing what they do, this will learn you better. ;-)

  • by arglebargle_xiv (2212710) on Sunday August 03, 2014 @01:14AM (#47592045)

    REMOVE Metro. (not disable, not hide; DIE.)

    While I fully support the sentiment, completely removing components like this can cause Windows Updates to fail to install. For example if your Windows desktop PC or server doesn't have a "Tablet PC" folder in the start menu, some updates won't install [wordpress.com]. So you potentially need to keep gigabytes of Microsoft's crapware sitting on your PC on the off chance that some update checks for it and won't install if it's not present.

  • by lucm (889690) on Sunday August 03, 2014 @01:33AM (#47592093)

    No they support Linux virtual machines. It's not the same as cloud services.

    On Azure one can deploy virtual machines (Windows or Linux) but also cloud services, which are basically dedicated on-the-fly instances of Windows Server on which one's web services are deployed. Cloud services are similar to managed VPS; you can remote desktop in the instance, but the patching and maintenance is built-in in the image. You don't rent a VM, you rent resources, and the instance is mostly stateless.

    In addition to VM and cloud services, Azure also offers web sites, which are similar to traditional hosting. They support most web technologies (asp.net, php, python, node) and you can choose between shared or dedicated instances. What I found convenient is that you can use all those technologies within the same website, so if your app is mostly node but you need a specific web service that is written in PHP you can have both.

    That's different from AWS, where only VM are available.

    I have two Linux VM on my Azure account. There is a CentOS image available. It works ok but I know for a fact that they sometimes reboot without warning (I installed one and was lazy in configuring Apache, it was not registered in the startup services, and a few weeks later I noticed that Apache was not running). Never had that problem on AWS, but Azure is cheaper and easier to use. I pay about $15 per VM per month for the smallest instance.

  • by jbolden (176878) on Sunday August 03, 2014 @01:43AM (#47592119) Homepage

    Most games are coded against DirectX. OpenGL is considered by most game companies far worse. Linux drivers are often well behind commercial drivers. This isn't an easy to solve problem.

    Then of course there is the problem that the whole theory is wrong. Most home / small business PCs are not primarily used for gaming but for home productivity and communications.

  • by JMZero (449047) on Sunday August 03, 2014 @02:01AM (#47592155) Homepage

    If you piss around with Windows 8 for a while, you can basically simulate Windows 7. But for a long time, you'll still bump into horrible garbage - like "you wanted a weird, functionless fullscreen app to view an image file, right"? Very few things are real showstoppers, but lots of stuff is just a little worse - like they abandoned all the little refinements they've made to progressive versions over the years. Little stuff, like the behavior of the "run" dialog. It used to autocomplete well, and seemed to usually know what you wanted. Now it doesn't.

    My job has me doing development on a Windows 8 machine - and it's gotten down to very few times a day I say "oh God, really?", but it's taken a lot of tweaking and adapting to get there. And there's literally nothing I actually prefer about 8. Lots of it just evidences horrible testing/design. Like your default start screen has a tile for the "math input editor" or something. That's a very narrow niche app for a desktop, non-touchscreen computer, and it doesn't work the way anyone expects. Many times I've been asked "what the heck does this do?" - and it actually took me a while to figure out. Obviously that doesn't hurt anyone much to have a stupid, useless app - but the same lack of design pervades the whole product.

    It's just a half-baked mess, and I think it's earned it's poor reputation very well.

  • by GreatDrok (684119) on Sunday August 03, 2014 @06:17AM (#47592669) Journal

    "Mac remains the desktop fashion accessory for those who care about style over function"

    This is a very myopic view of the Mac. In some fields, particularly scientific fields, Macs are a better solution than Linux and have gained considerable support. It isn't because it is a fashion accessory, it is because it is a fully fledged UNIX with all the same open source tools as Linux, plus a bunch of commercial software that Linux lacks, all on hardware that is well specified, long lasting and well designed. I've had my share of PC hardware cobbled together to get Linux on my desktop but in the end a Mac is more cost effective and a better solution. Our site's Linux fanboy admin even bought a MacBook Air for his own use and now won't spec anything non-Apple for our users regardless of the OS they choose because we've had such bad experience of poorly made PCs.

  • by skeib (630324) on Sunday August 03, 2014 @07:02AM (#47592745) Homepage

    I'm not sure where you learned to do percentages, but the fact is that OS X has ~300% more market share than Linux for the desktop (four times as much, e.g. 300% more or 400% of the market share). Not 5% as you state.

  • by dfm3 (830843) on Sunday August 03, 2014 @09:36AM (#47593187) Journal

    Maybe it's also because I hate the new skeuomorphic design aesthetic. What's wrong with gloss, gradients, transparency, and attractive animations, or even a bevel or link here and there so we can actually tell something is clickable rather than playing mystery-meat navigation? I swear, everything is going flat-shaded, blocky, ugly, and indistinguishable, all because that's now the new "hip" look.

    Skeumorphism [wikipedia.org] - the use of design elements that mimic real life objects with similar functions, is actually the opposite phenomenon from the flat, light-on-pastel design trend. Though I fully agree with you - both of these UI philosophies have been severely overused.

    A bit of googling will turn up plenty of articles analyzing the history of the skeuomorphism-versus-flat debate particularly at Apple, which I would argue has been one of the biggest influences in UI design over the last few years. Basically, the loss of skeuomorphism advocates such as Steve Jobs and Scott Forstall led to the pendulum swinging completely in the other direction, and many gimmicky and dated interface elements such as notes apps that look like real paper and a game center that looks like a cheap felt billiard table have been stripped away. But - what to replace it with? Well, everybody wants to stay on top of the latest design trend, and Microsoft and others seem to be migrating to flat designs, so flat it is.

    Although you could argue over who copied who, essentially what you have is Microsoft and Apple in a race to see who can flatten their interfaces and strip out any traces of skeuomorphism the fastest. Sure, it looks trendy, but it's reached the point where we are sacrificing usability and accessibility in order to have the most "modern" design. Here's where I have a problem with the whole thing: computer interface elements have been pretty consistent over the last 20+ years or so. Everything behaved as expected and usually acted pretty consistent between operating systems. This is great for users, since they can focus on the task rather than the tools needed to accomplish them, and using the interface becomes second nature. To those who *design* computers rather than *use* them, this is a problem - you want the bling to be noticed. The old way of doing this was to show off your new hardware by making the UI flashy, bright, colorful, inviting - basically by ramping up the skeuomorphic elements to 11.

    The problem is, the novelty of this wears off fast, and these interfaces quickly become dated. Now, flat is in, and anything that even remotely resembles skeuomorphism is stripped out. I have a number of problems with the current trend:

    1) interface elements are hidden or played down, making them hard to find. Often it's hard to tell if I'm just not looking hard enough for that feature, or if it has been removed altogether.
    2) It does away with conventions that have been standard for decades. This means that every time designers go wild designing a new interface, users have to spend time and effort learning a new way to accomplish a task.
    3) It's less accessible. Razor thin text is hard for some people to see. Pastel on white and white on pastel text may look "hip" but can incredibly difficult to read. Interface elements that are marginalized can be hard to hunt down if the user doesn't know where to look.
    4) It's inconsistent. Some programs hide buttons and scroll bars, some do not. Some use vastly different elements for simple actions such as "close window" so that the user is left guessing at the function of a UI element.

    My prediction is that in a few years, "flat" will look as equally dated as skeuomorphism does now.

  • by DNS-and-BIND (461968) on Sunday August 03, 2014 @10:23AM (#47593445) Homepage
    Scientific users are such a tiny proportion of Mac users as to be insignificant. They are dwarfed by the number of users who do indeed view Macs as a fashion accessory. Style over function is a big deal to these people.
  • by JeffAtl (1737988) on Sunday August 03, 2014 @10:58AM (#47593635)

    Yes it is. The massive conversion to laptops show that [the desktop is a legacy platform]. The sales data for 6 years clearly show that. You may not like that it is a legacy platform, Microsoft doesn't but it is.

    Sorry, but that is nonsense. Companies have increasingly moved to laptops, that is certainly true, but that doesn't mean what you think it does. Everyone in my office has a multi-monitor setup with a mouse and keyboard - powered by a laptop that is connected to docking station. This has pretty much become the typical setup.

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