Microsoft Thursday said the number of Vista licenses sold has hit 140 million.

The announcement was made during the company's fiscal third-quarter earnings call.

While the 140 million represents licenses sold, it does not reflect how many of those licenses are actively being used to run Vista. Companies still have the option to buy a Vista license and use downgrade rights to run XP.

The Vista operating system, which was released in November 2006, has dominated headlines recently as users complain about application compatibility issues and analyst debate the timing and the value to IT of moving to the desktop platform.
The company also recently released Vista Service Pack 1, which has traditionally been a trigger for IT to take a serious look at the operating system. The Service Pack, however, has had its own set of issues.
In June 2008, the company reported that Vista sales had hit 60 million.