Windows Trends

Just like any other component in your computer, Microsoft has come out with a steady stream of operating systems and service packs. At PC Matic, we have an insider’s view into the world of Microsoft Windows.

In particular, we have a front row seat to the rate at which Microsoft’s latest operating system, Windows 10, is being accepted into the market place. These charts are updated automatically each month, so bookmark this page to see the latest developments. Mouse over any chart for a more detailed analysis.

Windows 10 Steep Migration Curve has Flattened Out

Migration to Windows 10 by Desktop and Portables

Windows 10 Installation Rates by Gender

Business and Home Users are switching to Windows 10

The Worldwide Life Cycle of Windows 10.

Windows 10 Installation Rates by Generational Age Groups

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46 thoughts on “Windows Trends”

  1. I read somewhere recently that its now over 60% of users or “marketshare” is windows 7, with windows 10 free for the first year for those users im wondering just how many will decide to switch over to windows 10. With windows 10 also being the new X box one operating system this could be big, very big son!

  2. Please update the “Operating Systems Waterfall” graph. It hasn’t been updated in months (unlike the other graphs).

  3. Please add WinXP Service Pack breakdown to the waterfall graph. As recently as a couple months ago, the watergfall graph showed Gold vs SP1 vs SP2/SP3.

    For developers, there were some major updates made by the SPs. I’ve used pcpitstop’s research to help the marketting department understand what OSes should be supported and which ones can be dropped. For example differences, Microsoft had no Bluetooth support for XP Gold, had extremely limited support for XP SP1, and had moderate support for XP SP2 and SP3 (note: this is regarding Microsoft’s own Bluetooth stack, not other stacks like Widcomm/Broadcom or Toshiba).

  4. xp was blasted for its first 2 years by MS hating columnist. Vista will be blasted forever most likely. It took 1.5 years for decent driver support and was more resource hungry. However it did add mainstream 64 bit support and increased reliability of the main OS (excluding drivers)

  5. Everett L. Williams

    I’ve been working with computers for some 43 years now, and I have seldom seen a worse OS than Vista. It took too long to come out, and it did not have most of the stuff that was initially promised. For computers running dedicated applications with a bit of internet access, it requires a jump from 0.5 gig of RAM to 2 gig to run decently and more video RAM than these people need. There is no reason for many businesses to upgrade their OS until their hardware dies, and probably not then if they could continue to get XP Pro. Consumers really have little choice, so you will see that sector continue to add to MS’s totals, but businesses have almost zero incentive to move. Now, MS is trying to punish them by only providing upgrades from Vista to Win7. The businesses that already have their data isolated will just pump out images of Win7 the way they do with XP now, but the small and medium sized businesses are really going to hate this transition. They will really have to buy new hardware and OS together, even if they plan to run the virtual XP for most of what they do. All this in the middle of the worst recession/depression since the 30’s may mean that many businesses just hang onto hardware until it absolutely dies. The cost of this upgrade and the contractors that do a lot of this in the small and medium business market will mean that many of them will be damaged by process and may have to lay off workers just to afford what they will have to do. This stinks, and could really only be done by a monopoly, MS still is, no matter how finely the lawyers dice the terminology.

    Win7 appears to be a good OS, even if it still doesn’t have the really major changes originally proposed for Vista. It has more than a few crumbs for business people, and, in coordination with Server 2008 R2, will make many networks more secure. Though 2008 was one of the few “right” things that MS has done in a long time, R2 will cause a few yowls with it’s 64 bit requirement. Those who have written applications for the 32 bit mode that will be accessed remotely on 2008 R1 will be unhappy, and there will more than a bit of older server accessory hardware that will not have drivers for 64 bit R2, causing more dislocation in slim budget times.

    I’m happy that Win7 has been thrown forward, and I expect that it may be the last major OS release from MS. I suspect that the other major items that are still needed, like a new file system, will come as separately priced upgrades to this OS somewhat like the R2 for 2008. Hold onto your wallets. Most of us will just have to hold our noses and proceed, but this is not the way that most of us want our software to run.

  6. Never really had a problem with Vista. IMO I think Vista is a very good OS. I haven’t had any problems running it on my PC. But then again I did pay attention and upgrade my hardware first before installing it. It’s sad that Vista gets so much flack, it really is a pretty stable OS.

  7. …never tried Vista..don’t want to try it. XP Pro has been steady and reliable for me and runs all the apps I want.

    I’d druther use Linux, Ubuntu or Kubuntu, but the applications available simply don’t work for me; but, the Canonical gang is forging ahead and seems to be catching up so maybe one-of-these-days I can chuck Windows altogether.

  8. I have tried Vista. I don’t like Vista for the simple fact that it is something new(in its language)and I am getting tired of more schooling.
    XPpro was not a far cry from Win98 or Win 95 for that matter. There were a lot of similarities. XP pro just made it simpler using the same language basically.
    I mean, why change “find” to “search”. While they both mean the same thing, I was looking for “find” when I started with XP. It was an uneccessary change. It, and other things just makes it harder to learn.
    And why should I?
    Windows Home is different again than Windows Pro. I tried it on a buddies machine and I find it a pain to navigate through so am of little help to him when he emails asking how to do something. I am talking “greek” because of the differences.
    I have a friend who has Vista. I am not interested…because of the differences again.

    If the computer was an automobile, the new ones would be sitting on the lot because the people who are just getting comfortable with the older model – are not friggin interested in learning again. They are just enjoying the full functionality of what they now have.

    K.I.S.S. applies here and it is directed to Gates.
    I can walk away from this electronic crap right now and have a beer and fine food with friends(which really matters in life).

  9. I had an old windows98se that was about to quit, so I had to buy a new PC. I have had Vista sp1 64bit since October 2008. I had many problems with Vista and was about to give up. I installed PC pitstop optimize 2, PC pit stop MD, pitstop driver alert and pitstop exterminate.Immediately performance increased! The pc optimize 2.0 saved my laptop and made it run fast!I also went with Firefox. I have the latest 3.0.5 version, and have the noscript add on. I also went with Open Office by Sun.I can honestly say that without the PC Optimize 2.0 this PC would be trash. The CA security suit was not ready for Vista 64 when I purchased my PC so I run Norton 360. It does the job ok after I disabled the Windows Defender.Seems 2 antispyware systems running together on mine don’t mix. I can’t say enough about PC pitstop products. Very good software, should be standard installation for any Vista operating system.



  10. I’ve had a chance to try out Vista on a friend’s computer. Its horrible, even with all the drivers updated and working properly. The eye-candy is far too much for me, not just the slowness. It requires too much RAM, too much hard disk space, I can’t find any accessibility features to make the text and icons larger, the list goes on and on. So I’m finding a lot of confirmations of what people are saying about Vista. It just reinforces my decision to stay away from Vista.

    I’m sticking with XP and Linux. I’ll surely check out Windows 7 when the beta comes out. I’m also patiently waiting to see if Google’s OS will ever become available.

  11. Hey stupid people! get a life will ya. We are tired of hearing you cry about Vista because you went out and bought a $300 computer that is a piece of trash. If you want to play with the big boys who can use Vista, you need to spend $1000 minimum on a computer not counting the monitor. So take your piece of trash and go play solitaire on XP and quit running your mouth about things you know nothing about.

    PS: The ones complaining about giving Microsoft $150 every 4 or 5 years must be upset because it is cutting into their drug money.

    1. How about shelling out a whopping $400 for a retail version of XP Pro?

      And for it to only last about 5-6 years?

      I get tired of being forced to upgrade because of someone’s greed (Microsoft).

      I’ll stick with Linux. At least if I want to spend money I can donate what I want and not be forced to do it.

  12. The only reason why more RAM was put into PCs containing VISTA is that VISTA is such a memory hog and Microsoft is such a money hog. Manufacturers were putting the bear minimum and many new PCs were not working properly or at all. Not lets see Microsoft start building software which actually works and doesn’t crash 24/7 or require a billion patches to fix security holes that should have been caught in the first place. IE 8 any safer security wise? NOT

  13. I find that Vista is a better organised system than XP. It is however memory hungry and windows explorer has a mind of its own forever crashing.I too can’t wait for Google.


  15. Richard Kaminski

    It’s OK saying that Vista is this or that but why does Microsoft have to keep ‘upgrading’ to systems that need more resources for less output

  16. I have run Windows 95, 98, 98SE, ME, 2000, XP, XP Pro, and Vista.
    I have seen people bash them all, and true with any new operating system, you need to upgrade the hardware to suffeciently run the O/S, no one denies that fact. I have XP Pro on my puter now, and will stay with that, I have the latest hardware to run Vista like a bandit, but have done some testing, and found that the 8 Gigs of DDR-3 ram I have with the new 3.0 core duo processor, and my high end GeForce GF9800GTX+ PCI-E/512MB DDR3 video card, all works faster with XP Pro, than it did with Vista, also uses way less memory and hard drive space than Vista, I am not going to bash Vista, I think it is a good O/S, but not for me, I like my system to run fast as hell, and when doing online games the faster responses come in handy, also there are still a lot of programs I use that Vista just won’t use, so to me until they get Vista to more easily use the programs that it isn’t compatible with and reduce its hard drive and RAM footprint, I am going to still use the XP Pro I have on this puter.

  17. i been running vista ultimate on a phenom 9600 be asus platform with 2 gigs of memeory and have no complaints with the operating system. with a good system vista will run great. its amazing how many ppl complain like this when xp first came out. just naysayers

  18. XP is a great operating system, and at first, it was not widely accepted either. In fact, i’m sure if PC Pitstop staff were to dig into their archives, they could pull up a lot of the same slag you current XP-lovers are saying about Vista.

    It was mentioned above, that you need to upgrade your hardware in order to run Vista properly, and enjoy it. That’s a true fact.

    It will run on the bare minimum requirements, but like anything in this world, the bare min’s are not going to make for the most efficient result.

  19. Have used Vista since early 2007. Very satisified. Everything works a bit differently than xp, but the new search system alone is worth the upgrade. I have 10’s of thousands of photos, and music files on my machine and the new search system makes finding what i want painless.

    There were some glitches early on with drivers and such but all works well now. It will be interesting to see what enhancments get added to windows 7.


  20. Charles J Etheridge

    I have had Vista since about a month after it was initially released. I like it very greatly more than I did the XP that I had earlier on a lesser computer. Vista has worked flawlessly for the whole time that I have had it and I have had the Auto Update enabled the whole time. With Windows Live OneCare and now with IE8 Beta 2 there have been no incidents of infection, and it is working quite well with Outlook and Word 2007 as well as a Pinnacle HDTV digital tuner as well as Cyberlink PowerDVD 8 Ultra. Of course it now has SP1; the whole time I’ve had a Comcast 12mb/sec Internet connection. The computer has a rather slow 2.13GHz processor, though it does have 4GB of RAM. Startup comes in only a bit over a minute and I never really have paid any attention to shutdown times, but it is definitely not excessive. Altogether Vista has been thoroughly satisfactory and I am completely pleased with it. There’s no way that I would even consider reverting to XP.

  21. I’ve got Vista x64 running on an E8200@3GHz with 8Gb of RAM this has enabled me to disable page file, and you know what? It runs like a beast. With the low prices of RAM (DDR2) these days it doesn’t really matter that Vista is a hog. Try it you may even like it!

  22. Having spent several years getting comfortable with XP, why should I want a new operating system that is getting so much bad reports? My friend — who builds computers for a living — won’t touch Vista. Neither will I.

  23. those who complain did not update their hardware and the result is then as expected. so stop wining and update your stuff, do you think when Wee Seven arrives, all will be fine and cosy? no, then it is even worse…

  24. Michael VanGilder

    When I look at VISTA, with all its resource hogging and massive memory requirements, I can only hope. Microsoft must have done this for a reason. I think that they, if anybody, would know about the next generation of computer hardware that will hit the scene. And just maybe, just maybe. They could be designing an O.S. to accommodate it. Just look at the litter things that have already been leaked to the public. Like the onset of TOUCH SCREEN MONITORS. It may not seem like much. But the O.S. needs to be designed to take advantage of this technology to fully get the worth of it. And there have to be others, many others. Look at the way tech. is going today. If I buy something electronic, it is obsolete before I get it home. I think that VISTA will become a powerhouse as the new tech. comes on the market. It’s all just my own little pipe dream. No real research went into this. Just thoughts.

  25. I’ve had no problems whatsoever with vista. I’m don’t think I’m lucky either. Some of the people that build computers and download vista on their computers don’t download the proper device drivers. That’s what happened to a friend.

  26. My 18 month old Vista with dual core and 3068 Ram does load about 60 seconds faster than my 8 yr old GW ME and 90 seconds faster than the 9 yr old GW 98SE. Of course they still have original CPU’s with only 1024 Ram and Avast! running a startup scan. Both work the Internet fine.

  27. Our experience with Vista at home sucked horribly. It slowed our new HP and Dell laptops to a crawl. After about nine months last June I wiped Vista and installed XP, and haven’t looked back since. XP is so much faster on these two computers than Vista was.

  28. all I can say is I wish someone had warned me about vista 64, it’s the worse decision I’ve made in years, it’s not compatible with anything, I hate windows mail, can’t burn avi files, I just hate it.

  29. Ther’s not much I caN SAY BECAUSE I am new to a pc but I do know that I like my XP service pack 2 and I am having an harder time learning about the computer than I did with my old home built one of course it wasn’t built by me. I just hope I can get to the point where I don’t have to bother the people at PCPitstop so much. I have all the products now I just need to understand them and what I’m doing!!!

  30. I have used Vista. Slows my Q6600 quadcore to a grinding halt on login….Sure it runs Warcraft smoothly, but so does XP. At least with XP i can be in the game quicker 🙂

    I’m afraid MS is helping the world’s carbon emissions with the gross missuse of CPU cycles. C’mon, 14GB install! For what!! Vista drive icons in xp is sufficient.

    For pure speed though, MS should buy an EEEPC with the linux disto, and see what a 15 second boot looks like!

  31. I have Vista Home Premium on a quad core and 3 Gb my problems was on the hardware not the OS I have try 4GB RAM it was a no go with that Gateway I had try XP on it also wasn’t working I did try 3GB RAM and bingo go it back on Vista no problem what so ever also and decided to stay with Vista after that.

    I have in my configuration a WHS Home Server own built and used that to restore my Original configuration to Vista and happy since them. I am not against Vista and still think that XP should be still offer for the one that want smaller foot print on their hardware, but I am just a consumer but linux is getting there.

    In the end I am happy with Vista but you need to sheed money on the hardware as it is very hard on the material side.


  32. Once upon a time I had a computer that I could turn on and begin word processing in a matter of seconds. It was called a 386sx running DOS. Ever since then, Bill Gates’ gang has led us down a primrose path of porky programming that demands more while running more slowly. Vista is the worst to date–I unfortunately contributed to the “adopted” statistic by buying one computer loaded with Vista. Mistake. Next new computer was XP and the sales guy just laughed when he heard the tone in my voice when he asked “Vista or XP.” I am sick to death of glitz over function–the only thing worse than Vista is my Blackberry. Pathetic program.

  33. I have used Vista on several hardware platforms that are well above the minimum requirements.

    I have found that there are numerous areas where the O/S does not operate as expected, places where there are obvious bugs (my laptop will not start on the built-in monitor when I have an external monitor attached, for example), and places where the security features get to be very annoying (do I really have to answer several times that I really want to rename a file, especially when I am logged in as an administrator?). The native search system is a lot harder to use than the XP system. The O/S on a regular basis starts doing something with the hard disk that slows the entire machine down (and I have seen this on several machines). The O/S is just not complete, polished, and easy to use. And…to put things in perspective, I am a senior developer who specializes in Microsoft products.

  34. The graphs reinforce what we’ve seen as system builders. No one has yet asked us for a system with Vista.

    Myself, I’ve had Vista Business set up on a dual boot system since RC1 (upgraded with each version and currently running SP1). I use Vista every couple weeks or so to update and make sure things still work (which they haven’t always, forced to reformat twice already). I have a very powerful system (E8400@3.8GHz, 2gig DDR2-8500, 7900GTX, 2x250g Seagate NCQ on RAID 0). Every time I boot to Vista, I can’t wait to boot back into XP Pro. Hate Vista. Slow, beats hard drives to death, and hasn’t been dependable at all for me.

  35. If my current hardware, software and OS serve my purposes fully, why should I wish to replace my OS with Vista? One of my computers is now running Linux and I quickly found that it both serves all my needs as well as providing me with the ability to quickly write scripts to perform tasks I could not in WinXP. From what I can tell, Vista would not give me any new or needed functionality, but would require replacing or upgrading some hardware that is otherwise adequate. I don’t need Vista, and am finding that Linux provides for all my needs and future updates cost little or nothing. I did find Linux to require a little more initial effort, but not enough to deter me.

  36. I have also found alot of them {those who dont run vista} have not upgraged hardware to match the software!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I upgraded and have found vista to be very cool…………….

  37. Canada’s rate for Vista adoption is high because you can’t buy a damn PC up here without Vista on it! We have no choice thats why I build all my PC’s and load XP.

  38. Why don’t you throw up a graph of the percentage of Vista doomsayers that have ever actually used Vista enough to be familiar with it vs a plotting of the doomsayers that are only marginally familiar with the Vista operating system.

    I may not be stating this properly but I’m sure you get the point.

    It’s my experience that those that I know who have worked with Vista over any period of time to become familiar with it and it’s capabilities speak very highly of it.

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