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Windows 7 usage growing quickly

Less than two weeks after its launch, Windows 7 already accounts for more than 3 percent of computers on the Web. But the Mac continues to take share from Windows.

Microsoft appears to be getting relatively strong early adoption of Windows 7 in the 10 days since its official launch.

According to Net Applications, more than 3 percent of PCs accessing the Web in the past two days have been doing so using the new operating system. Usage of the operating system has been growing strong in recent days, though Windows 7 already accounted for 2 percent of global Web traffic in the days ahead of its formal launch.

"The early adoption of Windows 7 looks very strong, and I don't believe Vista enjoyed the same early success," said Vince Vizzaccaro, an executive vice president at Net Applications. "Plus, we've seen surges the past two weekend days, and Windows has historically seen much higher usage market share on weekdays than on weekends."

However, weekends tend to see stronger usage by consumers. And consumers are more likely to move quickly to a new version of Windows than businesses, which tend to do extensive testing before adopting a new operating system.

The news is not all positive for Microsoft, though. As a whole, the Mac OS continues to gain on Windows. As of October, Windows had 92.5 percent of the worldwide operating system market, but Mac OS reached 5.27 percent, up from 5.12 percent in September. (Past numbers from Net Applications showed the Mac OS with significantly higher market share, though the market research firm says it has changed its methodology to better reflect the relative traffic of the countries from which it is getting data.)

Apple's recent anti-Windows 7 advertising has touted that if users are going to upgrade their Windows XP machines and have to transfer their data anyway, they might as well move to a Mac. Vizzaccaro said the early numbers suggest that the Mac might indeed be benefiting from such a trend but said it is too early to know for sure.

"We'll know much more in the months ahead," he said.