The study, released this week by technology consultant AssetMetrix, found that more than 80% of companies still have some machines using Windows 95 or Windows 98. Of those companies still using the older operating systems, an average of 39% of desktops were running either Windows 95 or Windows 98. "We found a significant occurrence of Windows 9x," said Steve O'Halloran, managing director for the research arm of AssetMetrix. The study looked at 372,129 PCs from 670 companies ranging in size from 10 to 49,000 employees.
The size of the business did not seem to dictate how prevalent the older operating systems were, with larger companies as likely as smaller ones to have a high prevalence of older operating systems. In total, Windows 95 made up 14.7% of operating systems, and Windows 98 made up 12.5%. Windows 2000 was the most common OS, running on slightly more than half of machines, while its predecessor, Windows NT4, was still used on 13.3% of desktops. Windows XP, the most current version of Windows, was found on just 6.6% of the machines. Consumers are also still widely using Windows 98. Google reported that 29% of searches done in September came from machines running Windows 98, as compared with 38% from Windows XP-based PCs and 20% from Windows 2000 machines.