Windows 2000 Magazine recently surveyed readers on their use of and opinion about Win2K Professional as a laptop OS. The message is clear: You love Win2K Pro. Readers from across all industries plan to greatly increase their use of Win2K on laptops.

We asked readers in decision-making positions about laptop purchases in their enterprises. Graph 1 shows that a whopping 79 percent of decision makers will put Win2K Pro on most or all newly purchased laptops, and 12 percent will put Win2K Pro on some newly purchased laptops. Only 9 percent aren't planning to put Win2K Pro on new laptops. Fifty-nine percent of decision-makers will migrate most or all existing laptops to Win2K Pro, 14 percent will migrate some existing laptops, and 27 percent won't migrate existing laptops to Win2K Pro.

If you're undecided about migrating your laptop to Win2K Pro, you might be encouraged to know that readers think highly of Win2K Pro as a laptop OS. Seventy-four percent of surveyed professionals say Win2K Pro is a very good laptop OS, 13 percent say it's good, and 5 percent say it's OK. Only 1.2 percent say it's poor (0.8 percent) or very poor (0.4 percent).

Win2K Pro's marks as a laptop OS improve when you consider only the population already using Win2K Pro as a primary laptop OS. Graph 2 shows that 82 percent of current Win2K Pro users say the OS is very good for laptops, up 8 percent from the general population. None of the current users say Win2K Pro is a very poor laptop OS.

Most current Win2K Pro laptop users strongly preferred the new OS to Windows NT and Windows 9x. Forty-eight percent say Win2K Pro is much better than NT 4.0, and 29 percent say it's better. Forty-three percent say Win2K Pro is much better than Win98, and 34 percent say it's better. A majority professed no opinion on Win2K Pro compared with Macintosh or UNIX for laptops.

An overwhelming number of current users think Win2K Pro is reliable on the laptop. Graph 3 shows that 64 percent rate the OS as very good, 28 percent rate it as good, and 5 percent rate it as OK. Only 1.7 percent think Win2K Pro reliability is poor, and 0.9 percent think it's very poor.

Current users are enthusiastic about Win2K Pro's Plug and Play (PnP) implementation (Graph 4 shows that 60 percent think it's very good and 30 percent think it's good) and PC Card implementation (Graph 5 shows that 51 percent say it's very good and 29 percent say it's good). Current users are also fairly happy with power management (Graph 6 shows that 33 percent say it's very good, 43 percent say it's good, and 16 percent say it's OK).

Users aren't quite as impressed with Win2K Pro's offline and online synching and encryption abilities, but that might be because they haven't tried these features yet. A healthy majority of users say synching and encryption are at least adequate: Graph 7 shows that 23 percent think Win2K Pro is very good at synching, 32 percent think it's good, and 21 percent think it's OK. Graph 8 shows that nearly as many users (65 percent) think Win2K Pro's encryption is adequate or better. A relatively high number (20 percent) of respondents have no opinion about synching, and an even higher 29 percent have no opinion about encryption.

Backup fares the worst among current users. Graph 9 shows that only 13 percent of respondents think Win2K is very good at backup. Twenty-eight percent say the OS is good, and another 28 percent say it's OK; 10 percent rate Win2K Pro's backup as poor. Again, 20 percent have no opinion, possibly indicating that respondents aren't as familiar with Win2K's backup features as they are with other features.

You might be interested to know that Win2K Pro users spend about the same amount of money on their laptops ($3506) as the average corporate laptop user running Windows, Mac OS, or UNIX ($3586).

Dell is the most common laptop brand of Win2K Pro users. Thirty-one percent of Win2K Pro laptop users run the OS on a Dell machine, giving Dell a commanding lead over Compaq (18 percent), IBM (14 percent), and Toshiba (13 percent). No other manufacturer had a market share higher than 6 percent. In addition, most users expected to buy their next laptop from their current machine's manufacturer.