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Windows 10 Still Dominates Company Environments



An analysis of Windows workstations monitored by Applixure reveals that adoption of Windows 11 has not really begun. In addition, OS sprawl is quite high and includes some releases whose support ends this year.

 

Applixure recommends that companies check the current status of their operating system versions and plan an upgrade path to minimize interruptions to employees’ work and business.

 
Published February 24, 2022
 

Windows 11 is not widely adopted - yet

Windows 10 dominates the Windows PC world. In our November 2019 review (Aging versions of Windows still alarmingly common in corporate use), Windows 10 had 63% share with over a third of PCs still running Windows 7. Today, the situation looks much different. We looked at the operating systems of over 100 000 computers running Applixure, and 97% of them are using Windows 10.


What was a bit surprising was that many organizations still have computers in use which are running Windows 7. Over 2,000 computers were still running on Windows 7 though Microsoft support for that Windows version ended over 2 years ago.


Windows 11 has not yet made an appearance in any real sense. Applixure data shows that many organizations have some instances of the OS in use, but this is likely for testing purposes only as the average installation size is 4 computers per customer environment.

Applixure graph_Distribution of Windows Versions

 Great variation in Windows 10 versions in use

 

Applixure’s data shows a great distribution of Windows 10 releases in use. The good news is that the total share of unsupported Windows 10 versions is fairly small – approximately 8%. Bad news here is that release 1809 Enterprise edition makes up most of these and support ended already in May, 2021.


Good to remember also is that support for release 1909 Enterprise edition is ending in May this year. This release is still very commonly in use, and over 95 % of 1909 versions in use are Enterprise edition. Also release 21H1 is used fairly widely, and support for that release ends at the end of this year.

Applixure study_Distribution of Windows 10 feature releases

Below you can find summarized the support status of current active releases*:

  • 1909 (released Nov 2019 - support ends May 2022): 30,75%
  • 20H2 (released Oct 2020): 35,65%
  • 21H1 (released May 2021 – support ends Dec 2022): 10,69%
  • 21H2 current stable version: 12.21%

*source of support dates: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_10_version_history


 

Why OS version sprawl is not ideal

Applixure’s data shows that IT departments are struggling with at least some degree of OS version sprawl. This is something which organizations should pay closer attention to as wide variety of different operating systems versions within an organization causes problems in maintenance, user support and security.

 

Applixure recommends that all companies actively monitor their own version status and control that only valid versions are in use, and that critical security updates are installed in a timely fashion after they are released.

 

 

Reasons why OS sprawl may occur

  1. Poor distribution tool or process: OS sprawl may be an indication that your distribution tool/process is not working as it should.
  2. Installation not happening: OS sprawl can also be caused by end-users not re-starting their computers on a regular basis – so updates are not being installed.
  3. Insufficient system space: Updates may not be installed if a computer’s hard drive does not have enough system space available for them.
  4. Hardware issues: In some cases, a computer’s hardware may not support the latest updates.

 

Applixure provides very quick and easy way to check the Windows or MacOS versions currently in use on both organizational and individual computer level.

 

 

How Applixure makes reducing OS sprawl easy

Applixure is a B2B SaaS solution which provides IT with always up-to-date visibility of computers and software. One of the things it can help you with is reducing OS sprawl. Applixure shows you which OS versions are in use and how well they are being updated. It also shows you where computers have insufficient system space or hardware issues that may be preventing updates from happening.

 

1.     See which OS versions the computers in your environment are running

Applixure continuously monitors your computers and software. The Devices dashboard gives you an always up-to-date view of which OS are installed. With a couple of clicks, you can get the list of computers and what OS versions they are running. This is useful for pinpointing which computers need upgrades, and also after an upgrade has been deployed – to check that it actually was installed properly.

Applixure screenshot - see what OS versions your computers are running

 

2.   Find computers which have not been re-started in a long time

One of the reasons why the OS (or other software) is out of date is that employees may be putting their computers to sleep rather than re-starting them regularly to enable updates. Applixure’s Use dashboard shows you how much of an issue that is in your company.

Applixure screenshot - find computers which have not been re-started in a long time

3.     Find computers which do not have enough system space available for updates

One reason updates may not be happening is that there is not enough system space. Applixure’s main dashboard alerts you to computers in your environment which have a full or near full disk. Then, you can dig into the details of these computers to determine the best path forward.

Applixure screenshot - devices with disk full    Applixure screenshot - devices with disk near full

 

 

Applixure screenshot - dig into device details

 

4. Check computers’ hardware before making upgrades

Before updating OS versions, you can easily check that the computers in question have the hardware to support the upgrade. For example, for Windows 11 the published system requirements are:

  1. Processor: 1GHz or faster with two or more cores on a compatible 64-bit processor or system on a chip (SoC)
  2. RAM: at least 4GB
  3. Storage: at least 64GB of available storage
  4. Security: TPM version 2.0
  5. Security: UEFI firmware
  6. Security: Secure Boot capable.

Applixure screenshot - see device details with arrows

It would be important today to make even greater use of data when deciding the computer models and specs for employees’ use. General recommendations are often far from adequate, and based on them, sizing can go wrong in terms of performance when selecting undersized machines for users in relation to the application load required for the job.

 

The applications needed to perform work tasks are the most important determinant when considering how powerful computers need. For example, the technical minimum requirement for 4 GB of Windows 11 is too low for most. The current trend in application development is to utilize browser technology in client applications (e.g. Teams is a good example of this but there are many others starting to do so). This places even more demands on the amount of RAM, for example, and often 8GB of memory begins to be insufficient for the performance required by applications.

 

Data should be harnessed for defining the specs for new computers. Applixure can help there too.

 

Learn more about our solution >>

 

 

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Harri Turtiainen

Harri Turtiainen

CEO & co-founder

Applixure

 

Email: harri(at)applixure.com

___ : +358 40 500 2622

___: https://www.linkedin.com/in/harriturtiainen/