You can buy Windows through some universities for 5 dollars.
I got Win2000 Professional, WinXP Professional, and Office XP for 5 dollars each at UAB. (University of Alabama at Birmingham) And you only have to sign up for one class to get it. A lot of people on campus don't even know about this deal, but if you go over to the bookstore they will hook you up.
The "corporate" or "enterprise" versions of WinXP do not have the hardware change reporting crap or whatever it is called.
And if you have problems recording or ripping CD's just use Nero or any of the other zillions of programs available for this type of thing.
And I can run some very old games on WinXP. I can run Wolfenstein 3D, the Doom trilogy, and the Quake trilogy on WinXP. Usually you can hit "windows compatibility mode" and stuff works. And for some notoriously hard to run games like Ultima VII you can get programs like Exult that will allow you to run it under Win2000/XP.
And if you really hate Microsoft it is possible to edit the startup screens and logos to create your own "version" of WinXP or Win2000. You just have to disable Windows file protection and edit some .dlls and what not. There are websites that explain how to edit the crap out of Windows.
My point is that there are usually ways to correct or circumvent many of the problems/complaints people have about Windows 2000/XP.
This comment was edited on Jul 29, 21:32.