As Microsoft begins its challenge of a court's decision that it holds a monopoly in the operating system market, IDC this week released fresh figures that show Windows dominating a massive 92 per cent of the desktop market.
According to the researcher, Microsoft's share of the client operating system market grew by three per cent over the past year. "There really is no alternative to Windows," said IDC analyst Al Gillen.
Apple's market share is falling and Linux, without applications and a user interface, is just a bit player on the desktop, he added.
The software giant's share of the server pie also grew three per cent in 2000 to 41 per cent. "Microsoft has resumed a growth trend after being static at 38 per cent for 1998 and 1999," said Gillen.
He explained that Linux continues to win backing from some of the industry's big guns, including IBM, Hewlett Packard, and Dell.
"Critics and non-believers can no longer dismiss the Linux market as a fad," he said. "If leading hardware vendors are willing to risk their credibility by endorsing and placing Linux systems in the market, it's easy for customers to conclude that there must be something real about Linux."
IDC believes that the open source operating system would come into its own in the handheld and embedded market. "Applications are not the driving force [in those markets] and Linux really has the potential to challenge Microsoft," said Gillen.
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