Zemlin is still joking about The Year of The Linux Desktop. He’s so busy catering to big business he has forgotten that most “desktop” PCs (Personal Computers with a GUI, say) are run by ordinary people like my wife (GNU/Linux user for a couple of months now and my service calls are way down… ), and GNU/Linux works very well for them. The “Year” has come and gone a long time ago but GNU/Linux is still performing well on millions of desktops.
It is dishonest or ignorant to claim otherwise. Consider webstats on W3Schools.com. Would anyone visit that site without a GUI? I doubt it. 5% visit while running GNU/Linux. That’s a significant market share. It matters. It is not zero or minimal. Think how many new PCs have to be installed of GNU/Linux each year to maintain that 5% value (and it’s increasing). There are around 100million more PCs in operation each year so just maintaining 5% share required 5million more PCs to run GNU/Linux this year. That’s a big city or a small country. It’s a lot of PCs. In 2011 there are about 1500million PCs running so 5% comes to 75million PCs in all, a medium-sized country.
It’s clear from the data that GNU/Linux on the desktop is growing slowly but surely. Zemlin should be aware that there are many opportunities for more rapid growth:
- thin clients,
- terminal servers, and
- coming soon to a retail outlet year you, ARMed PCs.
In none of these cases does that other OS offer any advantage over GNU/Linux and in every case, GNU/Linux has advantages over that other OS: cost, speed, reliability, and use of proper standards. We have seen Android/Linux sweep retail markets on small cheap computers. Android/Linux and GNU/Linux will both sweep into retail shelves for all the advantages they offer.