Windows Vista is slowly gaining more users, but an increasing number of folks are forgoing Windows entirely. That's the gist of Net Applications' freshly published operating system market share numbers for February 2009.
Between February '08 and February '09, Vista purportedly gained almost 10 percentage points, climbing from a 12.9% market share to a somewhat more respectable 22.8%. Meanwhile, Windows XP usage slipped from 74.5% to 63.7%. Add those numbers together, and you can tell Windows is slowly losing ground: Net Applicationss says the overall market share for Microsoft's OS's (including older versions) fell from 91.5% to 88.4% over the same time period.
As you'd expect, the Mac OS and Linux both made some headway—although the former gained considerably more ground than the latter. Net Applications estimated the percentage of Mac users at 9.6% last month, up from 7.5% a year ago. Linux still represents less than 1% of the market, but it nevertheless managed to climb from 0.65% to 0.88%.
In case you're wondering, Net Applications says it collects numbers from "the browsers of site visitors to [its] exclusive on-demand network of live stats customers." The firm claims a sample size of "approximately 160 million visitors per month." (Thanks to TG Daily for the heads-up.)