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A tale of two distros: Ubuntu and Linux Mint

Feb 10, 2012, 18:03 (4 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Terry Relph-Knight)

"December 2011 ? 4,100 for Linux Mint and 1,821 for Ubuntu ? are based on hits on the DistroWatch web site pages, so they don't indicate the number of actual users. As DistroWatch itself says: 'The DistroWatch Page Hit Ranking statistics are a light-hearted way of measuring the popularity of Linux distributions and other free operating systems among the visitors of this website. They correlate neither to usage nor to quality and should not be used to measure the market share of distributions. They simply show the number of times a distribution page on DistroWatch.com was accessed each day, nothing more.'

"By contrast, the Wikimedia Traffic Analysis Report - Operating Systems shows that in October 2011 there were 16,924,000 hits on Wikimedia pages from computers running Ubuntu and 556,000 hits from those running Linux Mint (Wikimedia notes that due to server outages these numbers are approximately 7 percent too low). By December 2011 these figures had risen to 29,432,000 and 642,000 respectively.

"It's arguable that these Wikimedia statistics, based on requests from software agents of operating systems actually in use, reflect the true popularity of the two distributions far more accurately than the DistroWatch rankings. If that's the case, then Ubuntu clearly remains firmly in command of the market share. However, the DistroWatch figures do indicate a substantial recent increase in the level of interest in Mint."

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