Forrester does it right. They examined hundreds of thousands of PCs used in business and identified the OS present. Whether their sampling is a proper sample from the universe of all business, I don’t know, but it is a darn site better than web stats from random web sites.
The figures, thanks to Mary Jo Foley, clearly dispel the 1% myth for GNU/Linux. Forrester finds percentages ranging from 1% to 1.7%. Could it be just the IT guys? Perhaps. More interesting is that the much ballyhooed “7″ is on only 21% of the business PCs examined and XP is on 60%. Vista’s share was cut in half, putting the lie to those who claim Vista was ever good enough or “fixed”. That other OS has a total “PC” share of 87.6%. “7″ is growing about 1% share per month and XP is declining about 0.6% share per month. Folks are keeping XP until the machine dies… I guess “7″ is better than nothing. MacOS is on 11% of “PC”s.
This looks promising for GNU/Linux even in business. Some of those XP machines will be converted to thin/thick clients running GNU/Linux. Why else are those GNU/Linux machines in the sample? They are prototypes.