One thing many of us would like to know, I am sure, is how many people out there use Linux? The usual numbers, those from Net Applications, would indicate that less than 1% of people use Linux. More recently, though, there have been some more optimistic numbers. Canonical is claiming that 11% of businesses use Ubuntu. (If that is the case, just imagine how many use Red Hat or Suse.) Gartner says that Linux’s market share is 4%, putting it about even with the Mac. And Context says that almost 3% of PCs sold in the UK have Linux pre-installed.
While none of those numbers are huge, they mean the difference between Linux and Mac OS X being about equal and Linux being a speck of dust in the sea. The fundamental problem is that it is really, really hard to know how what the marketshare of Linux, or any open-source software, is. After all, one download might never be used, or only be used for a short time, and another might be used to install Linux onto 100 computers.