Reading most of the posts, everybody is for getting one thing, you need to upgrade Windows every few months with another sloppy update and patch here and there. Windows XP support will end soon, and then Vista support will end and so on and so on.
when you get free working computers with Linux installed, that's all that matters, and the fun part comes later when you can figure out what you can do with a Linux box and all the potential it has to run loops around a Windows OS. You have unlimited software distributions, free most of the time. If you don't like Ubuntu, download and install Fedora, don't Fedora, install Red Hat. At least with a Linux OS you can run it on older boxes for a few years without much hardware upgrades.