May 15, 2007 9:48 AM PDT

Gates: 40 million Vista copies sold

Gates: 40 million Vista copies sold
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May 13, 2007
LOS ANGELES--Microsoft has sold nearly 40 million copies of Windows Vista so far, Bill Gates told a crowd of hardware developers Tuesday.

That's more than the total install base of Windows' largest competitors, Gates quipped as he began his keynote at the Windows Hardware and Engineering Conference (WinHEC) here.

"As of last week, we've (sold) nearly 40 million copies," Gates said. "That's twice as fast as the adoption of Windows XP, the last major release we had."

Confirming news that had already leaked on its Web site, Microsoft also announced Windows Server 2008 as the official name of Windows Server "Longhorn," which is due to be finalized later this year.

In announcing the Windows Server 2008 moniker, Gates poked a little fun at his company's penchant for less-than-dynamic product names.

"We've been working hard thinking about it," Gates said. "We played around with a couple different ideas, but what we are going to go with is...Windows Server 2008. We know it's a surprise for us to pick something so straightforward."

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Video: Microsoft to Rally the technologies?
Vista features aim to unify hardware and software.

Gates also announced several new partners for its Windows Home Server product, including Gateway and Medion. Microsoft has already said that HP will have home servers based on the technology later this year.

"This will come out in the fall," Gates said. He also said that smaller computer makers, known as system builders, will also be able to build products based on Windows Home Server. Microsoft has positioned the product as a central repository for media such as photos, movies and music as well as a more seamless way to back up PCs in the home.

Microsoft also announced the results of a study it commissioned IDC to do that found for every dollar Microsoft makes off Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008, other technology companies will take in an additional $18. IDC also found other companies will sell more than $120 billion in products and services around the two Microsoft operating systems.

See more CNET content tagged:
Bill Gates, Microsoft Windows Server, WinHEC, Medion, Microsoft Corp.

155 comments

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Wow
This is odd, why is there no witty commentry from the mac and linux crowd?
did you guys finally give up?
I cant wait to hear from your guys comments today about how the numbers were of coppies sold were false and how people were forced to buy it...
Posted by eriky4 (9 comments )
Reply Link Flag
I think..
I think you are using a Microsoft grammar checker...
Posted by befuddledms (113 comments )
Link Flag
thnx
<I cant wait to hear from your guys comments today about how the numbers were of coppies sold were false and how people were forced to buy it...>

All true, but thanks for pointing it out again Ricky.
Posted by DemiHampster (29 comments )
Link Flag
Pretty much what I was thinking...
I have to think that 40 million copies, even if it was all forced purchases, it's STILL more than the total number of Mac installs! Since we know that there are not that many people being "forced" to buy Vista, it stands to reason that Mac must not be "all that" after all if people are buying a supposedly crappy (it's not, unless you are predisposed to hate Microsoft) OS over computers with Mac's OS X.....
Posted by ctg44 (27 comments )
Link Flag
oh...
Yea - Vista, as far as us Mac users.

I saw a person use Vista yesterday - on his Macbook...
Posted by gkflyboy (21 comments )
Link Flag
numbers probably true
The numbers are probably new, there's no need to hide or be afraid of them. Although, I do remember him saying that he was going to sell 100 million by a certain date. At 40 million copies sold, he's getting there, but isn't there quite yet.

Don't fret about the linux or mac crowd. They are happy with their OSs and any news about vista doesn't impress them one bit.

As for the rest of us, we're all upgrading our hardware so we can enjoy vista when we do upgrade, adding to that 40 million count...
Posted by thedreaming (573 comments )
Link Flag
Thanks Captain Flaimbait
First, I dont care what OS you use. Use what you like, and I so will
I. And I dont have to come up with ways that the figures were
distorted, just google "vista sales figures" and you will see plenty of
analysts doing it for me.

I used to be a mac hater like you, and then someone challenged me
to use one for 6 months. Its amazing what an eye opener that
experience was.
Posted by Zatoichis Sword (29 comments )
Link Flag
Yawn
How many people would have installed XP instead, had it been easily availible?
Posted by Phillep_H (497 comments )
Link Flag
It will be quite interesting....
... to know (with this reported "40 million Vista copies sold") how many "pirated" copies Vista have been installed worldwide. Duh!
Posted by Commander_Spock (3123 comments )
Reply Link Flag
And....
How many people are sitting there, staring blankly at their screens saying "I can't believe my software and hardware doesn't work right!"

Yes, I have tried Vista.
Posted by ddesy (4336 comments )
Link Flag
That's a HUGE Pile....
How many of those are unexpired Software Assurance copies? I'd be more interested in hearing how many copies of Vista have actually been installed in production.

Bill, you're such a marketer...
Posted by gefitz (1116 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Even better....
How many copies of Vista have been downgraded to XP?
Posted by ddesy (4336 comments )
Link Flag
This is what Wall Street wants
Because MS is a publically traded company, it must release statistics that will please the Wall Street Casino analysts.

So it is obvious that MS will find a way to claim 40 million copies sold. Nice PR stunt, but it is a meaningless number.

It could be advanced bulk sales to PC makers who will then install those copies as they build their PCs over the next 2 years. It could be sales to a few corporations that have "unlimited" contracts that allow them to deploy as many wintel boxes as they want etc etc etc.

Consider this: how many PCs capable of running VISTA have been built ?

I bet MS wouldn't legally be able to say that 40 million computers are running VISTA today.
Posted by jfmezei (24 comments )
Reply Link Flag
And Needs!
Wall Street needs to hear numbers sold so as to maximize their
remaining profits as the MS slide continues. The number of
copies actually installed and running would be a terrible reality
that neither MS nor their investors are ready to face.

For the world's advice to be "wait for SP 1 if not SP 2 before even
attempting to go to Vista" after five years in development,
somebody clearly got stuck with 40 million copies - the
overwhelming majority of which won't even see their first boot
for another 6 months to a year.
Posted by GatesOfHell (210 comments )
Link Flag
Typical MS BS
How many are from previous licenses?

How many are OEM pre-installs.

How many are retail copies?

As usual you have to take this with a grain of salt, actually a huge pile of salt. A single number doesn't tell the story, even if that number isn't rounded up.

That MS is publicly fudging numbers and at the same time have gone into serious FUD mode just shows how desperate MS is to hide the fact that the Titanic is slowly sinking.

I know people that work at the local best buy, the only copies of Vista walking out the door are forced sales because they bought a new computer.
Posted by MSSlayer (1074 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Uhmm,
one can buy a pc w/o an OS. Who is forced to buy Windows?
Posted by suyts (824 comments )
Link Flag
pointy
well, every OSX is an OEM preinstall, or an upgrade, so what is your point?
Posted by gggg sssss (2285 comments )
Link Flag
vista requirements?
4 year old p4 3ghz, 1gb ram, ati radeon 9800 128mb memory...running vista ultimate WITH aero turned on...absolutely no performance problems in last 3 months. 4.2 on the windows experience rating. So many people reference the extreme requirements of Vista. I don't think a 4 year old pc is all that much to ask for a new OS.

I have found from actually running the OS that it is very stable. The dreaded user account control "feature" is very annoying...for about a week. I never see it anymore. The sidebar is flat out awesome. For all you firefox users out there who tout the ability to create plugins, imagine the power of building plugins for the desktop that can pull in info from nearly any source.

I find it amusing that people trash MS for building an OS with unnecessary bells and whistles like Aero and with the same breath, praise OSX for design.

All that aside, in the interest of fairness, vista on a laptop sucks power like crazy. That needs to be addressed. Maybe more granular power settings would help.

As far as where the 40 million copies sold comes from, I don't know. But neither do you!!! just another assumption based on an anti-Microsoft bias.
Posted by gp2792 (176 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Requirements...
I tried installing Vista Business on my 4 year old P4 2.4 GHz, 512
RAM, 32 MB Mobility Radeon, and it ran like a pig. You know
why? Because it meets the minimum requirements.

The problem with Vista's requirements is that the bells and
whistles that are tacked on are completely unneccesary. And if
you can't run them, there is little reason to move to it. For
mobile users (like myself) XP is still running perfectly fine, and
there is very little reason to upgrade. I could pay money to
upgrade my RAM, or even purchase a new laptop, but why? What
is the justification? So I can see pretty translucent windows that
blur stuff behind them? That isn't justification.

OS X's bells and whistles are not to the same degree as Windows
Vista's. Whether you have a Quartz Xtreme capable card or not,
the actual windows don't change at all. They look the same.
Some fancy effects might not work, but that isn't what makes OS
X nice. What makes it nice is the simplicity of file management,
the ease of use and accessibility, and the lack of crashes. It isn't
about useless 3D effects when you're looking for the windows
you want (which is completely useless by the way).

By the way, I have Vista Business installed on a partition on my
iMac and it runs perfectly fine. I have spent considerable time
with it and have found that I hate it. The new explorer is
horrendous, and the security features (user account control...
ugh) are intrusive and ruin the experience. Little pop-ups still
abound from the task bar, and the side bar is a terrible
translation of Konfabulator/Mac OS X Dashboard.

I'm glad my copy was a free one through my job and I didn't
waste my money on it.
Posted by jelloburn (252 comments )
Link Flag
That was a fairly high end system 4 years ago
Try running Vista with all the bells and whistles on a 4 year old average computer.

Try running linux with all those same bells and whistles on that same 4 year old average computer and you will see that Vista is a bloated pig.
Posted by MSSlayer (1074 comments )
Link Flag
Hear! Hear!
Finally someone with sense enought to actually use the OS in the real world. I also had no problems with my 4 year old system, even had better performance with Vista Ultimate Windows Media Center than with the XP Beyond TV software.
All these whiners have to say is "MS is evil, therefore their stuff must be crap"
Posted by TucsonAlexAZ (53 comments )
Link Flag
vista requirements?
4 year old p4 3ghz, 1gb ram, ati radeon 9800 128mb memory...running vista ultimate WITH aero turned on...absolutely no performance problems in last 3 months. 4.2 on the windows experience rating. So many people reference the extreme requirements of Vista. I don't think a 4 year old pc is all that much to ask for a new OS.

I have found from actually running the OS that it is very stable. The dreaded user account control "feature" is very annoying...for about a week. I never see it anymore. The sidebar is flat out awesome. For all you firefox users out there who tout the ability to create plugins, imagine the power of building plugins for the desktop that can pull in info from nearly any source.

I find it amusing that people trash MS for building an OS with unnecessary bells and whistles like Aero and with the same breath, praise OSX for design.

All that aside, in the interest of fairness, vista on a laptop sucks power like crazy. That needs to be addressed. Maybe more granular power settings would help.

As far as where the 40 million copies sold comes from, I don't know. But neither do you!!! just another assumption based on an anti-Microsoft bias.
Posted by gp2792 (176 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Now we know
that there are 39 million pissed off PC users in the world at this very moment.
Posted by faust (41 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Possibly.
Apple only sells about 550,000 computers per month. At that
rate, the average Mac functional life span would have to be 7
years, whereas people only seem to hang on to their Macs for
5.5 years.

OTOH, MS is reporting licenses shipped (OEMS and licenses
included in Enterprise agreements). Only a small fraction of
those licenses are actually being used/shipped so far. It's not
like 40 million people are going to have Vista this year. The
estimates I've heard have been closer to 1/10th that (in a big
part due to large businesses largely ignoring Vista).

If that's true, then Mac's OS X would seem to have a lead on
Vista as far as installed base. For that matter, so do the top 3
Linux distributions.
Posted by FellowConspirator (397 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Ironic
I have to wonder. Why is it that self proclaimed technical wizards who post here find there are vast problems with whatever Microsoft releases?

Meanwhile I am among a half dozen friends who are non-techies and have been using Vista for a while now quite happily and without any problems at all.
Posted by BobSchles (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
Because you have low standards.
nt
Posted by MSSlayer (1074 comments )
Link Flag
Vista Works Great In Spit of Issues
I've got a few start up issues, some drivers not working right, program incompatiblities, and key devices that don't work.

The Vista that doesn't touch those things works very well. Robust even. Alas my sound isn't quite right, my media Center is corrupt in some way, I can't sync my PDA (after actually getting it set up correctly and syncing once already) and so on.

If you know where to look you can find a laundry list of issues that Vista thinks it has.
Posted by Renegade Knight (13748 comments )
Link Flag
The reason....
Non-techies might not have big problems. Power users are a different story.
Posted by ddesy (4336 comments )
Link Flag
No need to wonder,
Some, by reading other posts, are technically proficient. They understand Windows' limitations. There are some, as with any other OS. Most though, wouldn't even know how to build their own box. It is just that they are blinded by some imagined personal slight that Bill Gates gave them. Yeh, I know, its wierd. It is, though, pretty humerous to read all their whining, crying and moaning about MS increase in market share because they won't share their source code on one hand and then in the other, claim that MS has never made a good product. Strange but true.
Posted by suyts (824 comments )
Link Flag
issues...
I personally have had no issues with my copy (installed through
BootCamp), but I know my girlfriend's father has had a load of
issues with his copy. He purchased his laptop with it pre-
installed about a month ago and has a number of issues ranging
from disappearing sound drivers, to software that just won't
work any more.

I think somebody else hit the nail on the head in saying that
power users are the ones which will have more trouble. They will
demand better performance and customization and will end up
disappointed when everything, ranging from hardware to
software, no longer works.
Posted by jelloburn (252 comments )
Link Flag
It seems like...
the "Oh Steve, can I have your baby" folks are dripping tears onto their overpriced machines again.
Posted by law_hog (43 comments )
Reply Link Flag
It seems like...
the "Oh Steve, can I have your baby" folks are dripping tears onto their overpriced machines again.
Posted by law_hog (43 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Tears yes... of JOY!
Joy! Joy! Joy! I have just purchased my THIRD OVERPRICED
MACHINE! Now I have ELEVEN functional, secure and productive
systems! Has been that way since my first Mac in 1987. Did you
morons ever stop to think that if Dell, HP and all the other PC
(piece 'o crap) makers put the same quality of components in
their machines they wouldn't cost the same?

How stupid can you be? You GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR. Since
2001 I have replaced every PC in my office, one at a time, with
Macs. With each purchase, my profits increased from the
productivity.

NO ONE will ever convince me that buying a Windows PC is a
better deal, no matter how much they try to imitate Apple...
Posted by shycelticwitch (1042 comments )
Link Flag
40million upset customers
I was one of the Vista bandwagon morons. I went and picked up a new Dell Vista Ready computer, as soon as I put Vista on it I've had nothing but problems. I just bought a new DVD burner as the other two quit, my upgraded soundcard is lousy, I'll need to pick up a new one and many other problems. Dell just says too bad your computer is OEM XP Ha Ha Ha, They just wanted to sell Vista Ready computers they didnt mean to support them or even care if they work in Vista, Contact Microsoft with your problems? Microsoft wants $70.00 per tech support question, too fix thier lousy program. Wait a few years before upgrading too this POS. There is not much on the market currently supporting Vista, and most of the hardware suppliers are not upgrading patches for thier most recent releases to support Vista either. Thanks Bill Gates....
Posted by sbmunn (5 comments )
Reply Link Flag
dvd burner quit
What does your dvd burner breaking or the soundcard being lousy have anything to do with vista?
Posted by jlm429 (48 comments )
Link Flag
40 Million new victims for the hackers!
Gotta love it. 40 million people would rather by second rate
computers and software because it's "cheap". Then they
complain, cry and bang their fists in frustration because they
can't get any work done due to the viruses, errors and general
useslessness of the extra crap loaded in Vista that interrupts
productivity.

Mac user for 20 years and counting... with never a blip. No
crashes, no viruses, no equipment or operating system failures...
for 20 years.

As for price? You get what you pay for. It's so simple, even a
cave man could understand it.... If you want productivity,
security and functionality, buy a Mac. You want headaches,
security breaches, loss of income, loss of information and lots of
hours on the phone with IT... get a Windows PC!
Posted by shycelticwitch (1042 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Impressive!
20 years and not even a single blip! Where can I get one of these space-age magic machines?

PS: Try setting the power to "ON"
Posted by Charleston Charge (362 comments )
Link Flag
Uhhhm, but Vista has far fewer security flaws than MAC OS
Uhhhm, but Vista has had far fewer security flaws than MAC OS. Apple are having to ship boatloads of OSX patches. Vista has had hardly any. Vista also has far better integrated and more powerful and advanced security technologies and meets government and military security standard levels that Apple can only dream of. Not to mention you get vast amounts of additional functionality compared to a MAC, 10 times the hardware support and 100 times the available software library. Oh and shedloads of decent games too. Not to mention Office 2007.
Posted by richto (895 comments )
Link Flag
hipocritic asshole
M$ sucks all day long
Posted by pederasi (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
hipocritic as*hole
m$ smu4e
Posted by pederasi (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
And how many returned?
40 million sold. How many of those were returned to the places of sale? ;)
Posted by katamari (310 comments )
Reply Link Flag
they download this copies
how is the fool to buy this os
Posted by leumicard (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
To Jelloburn
I agree with most of your points. It's not fair to compare what someone could build to retail...but it is fair to note that the differential between home built machines with the same specs as an apple and the Apple price is far greater than home built versus retail from dell\hp etc. Apple markup is extreme. nvidia 7300gt cards are 80 bucks or less...or $150 at apple. That was my point, that apple markup is huge. Much greater than dell\hp etc. Because those other companies are really making commodity items, not niche products. SOME people are willing to pay the markup to get the OS and user experience. I am not one of those people. Neither are the other 80% of computer users. Vista will be just fine, folks and so will Microsoft. (I pray no one replies about how Google docs is going to replace Office...)

The 20" imac is $1500 and probably would last 5-6 years. Then again, my 4 year old dell is running vista ultimate with aero just fine and cost $750. Is a mac twice as good? Maybe, but not to me. Again, if that logic held true in the rest of our lives, we should all be driving Rolls Royce's to go to the grocery store...

Noticing the effects and needing the differences are two different things. For Joe Consumer, the machine that renders a web page is irrelevent. Network latency probably accounts for more delay than the machine itself.

Anyway, I am happy to spend my money the way I want to and so are you. That's what's great about America bud. Use whatever you want.
Posted by gp2792 (176 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Thanks
for a logical and thought out reply. I enjoyed reading it.

Google Docs you say?...
Posted by jelloburn (252 comments )
Link Flag
learn to read
The article says 40 million copies SOLD. Not 40 million distributed, downloaded, etc. But 40 million SOLD. If you can't figure out what all SOLD encompasses, then shut up and quit posting.
Posted by jehrico (27 comments )
Reply Link Flag
I guess I'm one of the forty something
that can. A recent article in InformationWeek did a comparison of Vista to Ubuntu. Ease of installation were about equal. If fact, according to the writer, there wasn't much difference. Of course the writer could be biased, there is a lot of that in the tech world as you can see. The point is, there are alternatives. I would advocate another alternative for more than 1/2 the posters here, they don't need a computer. They should exercise their choice and not buy one.
Posted by suyts (824 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Was meant as a reply to jelloburn
.
Posted by suyts (824 comments )
Link Flag
True...
Installation of Ubuntu was easy, but getting everything to work
properly after the install was insanely complex. Now, on a PC it
might be easier, but on my laptop, it was absolute hell. It
wouldn't even recognize my built-in ethernet.

On the other hand, an install of Windows generally will come
right up with all of your built in hardware working (for the most
part). I don't expect Linux to recognize everything in my system
(like my Wi-fi card out of my router), or the exact kind of video
card, but I would expect it to do a decent job of being able to
set up a simple ethernet controller.
Posted by jelloburn (252 comments )
Link Flag
I moved to Linux today...
And I'm taking about five people with me. Let the war begin.
Posted by ethana2 (348 comments )
Reply Link Flag
So you probably just doubled the Linux population in your neighbourhood...
And when you realise how limited and painful to use LINUX is, when you get fed up with installing zillions of security patches every month just to stop your box getting rooted by the latest kernel hole and you realise that you usually get what you pay for with software and spend hours hunting for obscure device drivers for your hardware written by random programers with no support and stuffed full of irritating bugs, and above all when you want to play a decent game you will be back to Windows...
Posted by richto (895 comments )
Link Flag
So you probably just doubled the Linux population in your neighbourhood...
And when you realise how limited and painful to use LINUX is, when you get fed up with installing zillions of security patches every month just to stop your box getting rooted by the latest kernel hole and you realise that you usually get what you pay for with software and spend hours hunting for obscure device drivers for your hardware written by random programers with no support and stuffed full of irritating bugs, and above all when you want to play a decent game you will be back to Windows...
Posted by richto (895 comments )
Link Flag
You should post a follow up...
... because I don't believe for half a second that you'll still be
using Linux after a couple weeks, unless all you do on your
machine is surf the internet (if you can find drivers that work)
and create office documents.

It's easy to say, "I'm using Linux now," but it's much harder to
say that you have Linux installed, and use it regularly. Linux is
an enthusiast OS, run by people that want to be completely
involved in working ON their computer, instead of the majority
that wants to USE their computer. Until Linux has a user friendly
setup procedure, file system structure, and drivers that actually
will work and don't require a terminal window to install new
ones, Linux will be sitting on the sideline.

This 'war' has raging for years, and Linux is still where it was.
Don't quote download numbers in reply, because those numbers
don't mean crap. Anything that is free to download and use,
people will try, but the majority of them are probably turning
their heads away in disgust when they realize nothing on their
computer works any more.
Posted by jelloburn (252 comments )
Link Flag
Uh oh!
M$ is doomed! Ethana2 and 5 of his friend moved to Linux!
Posted by J_Satch (571 comments )
Link Flag
Sold, or shipped?
I wouldn't be surprised to find the distribution channel packed to the gills with boxes of Vista.

But then again, I suspect a lot of "sales" are corporations that are buying Vista licenses but installing XP. Most are waiting until at least SP1 before rolling it out in any numbers.

In a way I feel sorry for MS. It's got to be hard to spend 5+ years developing an operating system that has been such a big disappointment, even for hard core MS fans.

And if the yet unannounced features in Apple's OS X turn out to be as revolutionary as some think (wish? hope?) Vista is going to be an even bigger disappointment.
Posted by rcrusoe (1305 comments )
Reply Link Flag
I doubt it
"I suspect a lot of "sales" are corporations that are buying Vista licenses but installing XP."

I doubt any corporations are doing this. If they already have a corporate license for XP, why would they waste their money on a vista license just to not use it? I don't think corporations are in the money of giving MS $ now so they can use the licenses later. That doesn't make sense.

Why are some of you people intent on coming up with insane arguments that make no sense to invalidate the numbers? Just give it up, already.
Posted by jehrico (27 comments )
Link Flag
40 million Vista users
Im glade Vista appears from Microsoft's view to be sucessful.
From what I have heard from the real world people.Many have
bought Vista but they wished they had not.
Posted by jesmac418 (35 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Wow that is great Bill
But the future is the Internet and Internet services.

But good on you for milking the cow while you can. But I have to inform you that people really do not care about the OS anymore. The interest is the browser and what services and sites you access. That is where true innovation is happening.
Posted by t8 (3716 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Innovation
All made possible by Internet Explorer.
Posted by DrtyDogg (3084 comments )
Link Flag
Innovation
All made possible by Internet Explorer.
Posted by DrtyDogg (3084 comments )
Link Flag
Internet services
No way. We lost internet for an hour today.

We usually lose internet about once a day, between one thing and another. (No, changing ISPs would not fix the problem. There's only one carrier out of town, unless we go satellite.)
Posted by Phillep_H (497 comments )
Link Flag
 

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