Boy, this sure is a week for numbers, statistics, and milestones. And nothing is more important than the overall market share of Windows 8, Microsoft’s latest and greatest operating system.

Redmond is getting ready to launch the first major upgrade to its new platform in the summer, but in the meantime, Windows 8 is gathering new users — leisurely pace or not. And now it has just reached a very important milestone.

The latest numbers from StatCounter reveal that Windows 8 is now installed on 5.26 percent of computers worldwide. And if it keeps this pace of ascent going there is a distinct possibility that it may overtake Windows Vista by the end of the month.

Windows 7 continues to top the rankings in May.

The world’s most popular operating system is installed on approximately 53.46 percent of all computers the world over. Windows XP comfortably retains the second place with 21.24 percent.

Mac OS X and Windows Vista are next — with 7.26 and 5.9 percent respectively.

Microsoft is ready and raring to release the first upgrade to Windows 8 (codenamed Windows Blue) in just a few months. The preview version of Windows Blue is expected to see daylight at the BUILD developer conference in June.

The final stable version is said to be available two months after that, give or take.

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