IDC: Windows 2000 Sales Picking Up

Despite their ongoing legal disputes with the government, Microsoft Corp. executives have at least one reason to sleep well tonight. International Data Corp. (IDC) released a new study Monday showing that shipments of Microsoft Corp.'s Windows 2000 operating system are steadily picking up.

IDC said Microsoft's latest OS has been gaining ground on its Windows NT predecessor and should eclipse NT in sales by year end. Additionally, IDC concluded that adoption rates on the new OS surpass those previously set by NT.

During the fourth quarter of this year, IDC looks for shipments of Windows 2000 to outnumber those of NT by 1.7 million, the Framingham, Massachusetts-based research company said in a statement. IDC also predicts that Windows 2000 will make up almost 71 percent of shipments of Windows 2000 and Windows NT by the end of 2001.

"The majority of the transition to Windows 2000 is taking place now and will continue for the next 12 to 18 months," said Al Gillen, manager of IDC's system software research, in a statement.

Windows 2000 Professional -- the software designed to replace Windows NT Workstation -- has shown solid acceptance rates and looks to be picking up steam over the next year, IDC said. While the professional version will only make up 40 percent of combined Windows 2000 Professional and Windows NT sales by year end, IDC forecasts that it could pull in more than 72 percent of combined sales by the end of 2001.

"There are numerous reasons for this fast acceptance, including support for new hardware technologies that Windows NT Workstation 4.0 didn't offer such as universal serial bus, advanced power management and plug-and-play support that really works," Gillen said.

While adoption of Windows 2000 server hasn't been as rapid, the OS could account for about 35 percent of all Windows server shipments during December 2000, compared with only 16 percent for all of 2000, IDC said. By the end of 2001, Windows 2000 Server Edition will account for 56 percent of total Windows server shipments, IDC said.

IDC is owned by International Data Group Inc., the parent company of IDG News Service.

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