I've never used linux before but now I know the truth I can't go back to windows. Not now, not ever.
The thing that sent me over the edge was the RPC server exploit. I should have patched it way before I got hit but I was negligent. So I patched it and then ran windowsupdate, installing all the other fixes that I'd missed. Big mistake. That update fubared XP.
What do you do? Handy-dandy 'system restore' of course! But now I have to apply the RPC patch again...b-but it won't work because the cryptograpic service is buggered. Knowledge base says to reinstall SP1 and run some commands, so I do that. Still doesn't work. On the plus side windows is so fucked up that the RPC worm isn't a problem any more.
I am sick of this shit. I've stuck with XP because it worked and was reliable; I used phoenix and thunderbird, apache and postgresql, and it all just ticked along merrily. Bah.
On a whim I bought SuSE 8.2 personal (it was half the price of professional :|) from amazon. Partitioned, installed. Easy enough. Modem doesn't work. Google from XP, goto linmodem.org, download RPM. Yay, modem works. Might be an idea for YAST to say "You have a shitty win-modem, buddy" or something. Blah-blah-blah, can't really remember. Patch with online update, download a dozen RPMs to get mplayer working (need porn), scared of trying to install nvidia drivers. Fonts in firebird not anti-aliasing no matter what build or RPM I download. Choose wrong sound driver for nforce2.
Then I realize that while a 40gb reiser partition is neat, I can't read or write to it from windows. Conversely, I can't write to either of the NTFS partitions. Also, I can't manage to configure FSTAB to let users read mounted windows drvies. Bleh, might as well reinstall and repartiton.
Done and done. Partitions automagically become readable. Found gtk2+xft firebird built on SuSE 8.2 -- works, no more jagged fonts! Plucked up the 'courage' to install nvidia driver after uninstalling the YOU updated kernal (otherwise I need the source -- which doesn't come with personal -- to recompile).
As of now, the only issues I have are: TV-OUT (can't get this working, last time I tried it the display on the CRT wacked out) and CBQ (mldonkey is swamping my crappy winmodem).
After two installs, maybe about 5hrs getting things to just 'work', and windows and its viruses can rot in hell.