Congratulations: you’re no longer part of the 1%.

For the 3rd month in a row the share of worldwide desktop computer users running Linux has been above 2%, according to data from web analytics company Net Market Share.

Data from way back, to September 2016

We reported back in July that Linux marketshare had passed 2% for the first time, and that figure remains the highest they’ve ever reported for Linux, at 2.33%.

But the share for September 2016 was almost as good at 2.23%.

It’s the third consecutive month that Linux marketshare has been above 2%.

Rise and Error

Those of us who use Linux as our primary desktop computing platform can take a degree of pride in these figures. They do show a clear trend towards Linux, rather than away from it.

But we should also remember that statistics, numbers and reporting methods vary between analytics companies and that all figures, however positive, remain open to interpretation and debate.

Tracking data from Wikimedia, the company behind Wikipedia, shows a more familiar figure of ~1.2% for Linux (including Ubuntu, Red Hat and SUSE) based on data over the same three months .

Net Market Share bases its data on the number of visitors to a mere 40,000 websites globally.  While 40,000 is a fairly big sample on one hand, it’s also minute compared to the number of actual websites that are out there.

Fact Is: We’ll Never Really Know Linux Marketshare

Trying to track Linux usage is never going to be easy.

There are too many distributions, kernel versions and browsers in play; too much variance and a greater respect for privacy and control.

But whatever these stats do or do not show is irrelevant: I use Linux because it’s better. 

Linux marketshare