Microsoft sold over three times more copies of Windows 7 in the week surrounding the Oct. 22 launch than it did Vista during its opening days in 2007, a retail marketing research analyst said today.

For the week of Oct. 18-24, and including the large numbers of pre-orders that Microsoft and online retailers took starting last June, Windows 7 unit sales were 234% higher than Vista's in its first days in January 2007, said Stephen Baker, an analyst with the NPD Group.

"I would call it pretty good," Baker said, "but I wouldn't call it great."

Baker said that expectations for Windows 7 were even higher than its actual performance, but the tough economy and retailers' reluctance to give up on either Windows XP or Vista created what he called a "headwind" for Microsoft's new operating system.

"The fact of the matter is that prior to the launch, there were a lot of operating systems out there," Baker said. "When Vista launched, you didn't see a lot of Windows Millennium PCs," he said, referring to the edition that preceded Windows XP. "Windows 7 will be more of a long haul."

Full story: Computerworld