Subject: How many people use NetBSD
To: Alejandro Rosales <>
From: Perry E. Metzger <>
List: netbsd-advocacy
Date: 08/21/2002 13:22:35
Alejandro Rosales <> writes:
> <ignorance>Is NetBSD's users number really around 1400?</ignorance>
> Plz dont lart me for asking this...

It isn't even within a couple of orders of magnitude.

On average, something like 1500 unique hosts connect to
on any given day -- that is just, not any of the
mirrors at all. That's more people downloading parts of NetBSD every
day just from the primary site than the idiot trolls claim use NetBSD
at all. (There is some duplication in who touches the box day to day
-- it looks like 25 or 30,000 unique hosts download from ftp in any
given month based on the stats.) There are, of course, dozens of
mirror sites, and most users don't download any new NetBSD software at
all in any given month and probably a lot don't even download in any
given year.

How many people use NetBSD altogether? No way to really know.  Lots of
people use NetBSD in embedded applications and have no idea they're
using it. How many machines run NetBSD? Also no way to know. Both
numbers are certainly up in the millions, though, given all the
embedded hardware out there with NetBSD in it.

How many people CONSCIOUSLY use NetBSD altogether?  Still no way to
know. I'd make an educated guess based on a number of stats the number
can't be less than the low hundreds of thousands, though there is no
particularly good way to figure that out precisely. That's an absolute
bottom estimate, though. The true number could be far higher, or it
might not be. We've never really tried hard to find out, and it might
be very difficult to do it.

So, although in relative numbers we cannot reasonably claim to be
anywhere near as popular as, say, Windows, or even Linux, the size of
the community is pretty damn large in absolute numbers, and overall
usage of NetBSD continues to rise with time.