Richard Lockwood said:
> Andy - ordinary people do not generally use Linux as a desktop OS.

Is there such a thing as an ordinary person?
Any way my point was that the true figure may not be quite as low as stated.
I did not say it would be greatly higher, certainly not higher than
WindowsXP (by a long way).

I would be quite surprised if it was more than 10%.

Even 10% is significantly higher than 0.4%

Richard also said:

> Here, for example, you find a figure
> you wish was a lot higher, and then come up with a load of reasons why
> it might be inaccurate, without providing any evidence for a single
> one of them.

I would have thought they where all self explanatory, evidently not.

Many studies have shown that Junk email makes up 90% of all email.
Why are you assuming that the same people are not using websites to
launch attacks?
Have you never heard the phrase "comment spam", have you never seen a
"captcha", they're not there to look good.
Stick your email address on a public website, wait a bit and see if
you get spam. How do you think they knew that was your email address?
Because robots do trawl the Internet looking for email addresses. The
BBC site is more likely to be hit by these as lots of places link
there so it's easy to find.

No - this is not evidence.  You're coming up with a series of
hypotheses to fit your scenario - that a significant proportion of
people use Linux as a desktop OS.  This is the same arguing technique
that proponants of Intelligent Design use.  "You can't prove
otherwise, so it must be true."

Jason Cartwright wrote:
> but add that these numbers are
> probably generated by some pretty sophisticated 3rd part software that
> the BBC employs.

But we don't know that do we?
Have you ever seem how bad user agent sniffing is?

I was using a PC running FireFox on Linux that transmitted the word
"Linux" in its user agent. I was told by a major website that I was
running "Netscape" on "Mac OS".

Again - just because the BBC's technique *might* be inaccurate doesn't
mean it *is* inaccurate.  Likewise, because you want to believe that
Linux is massively popular doesn't mean it is.

There was a very interesting (and to my mind, fairly written) article
in The Register yesterday about installing Linux:  (cue
Linux-heads bleating about how he should've used a different distro,
or how the author must be brain dead not to be able to get it right
first time...)  I care not one way or the other, but it goes to show
why Linux still isn't ready for everyman to go installing it on his
expensive PC when it came with a

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