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No other affordable choice
When WinXP crashed for the very last time and would not even begin to read the hard drive I looked at the options. I could lay out $1000 for a new machine - not on a retirement check. I could try to reload Windows - one OEM shot at $200 - $300, or a re-loadable at $450 - Also not on my income. Then I did a search on the various OS's out there. I compared the user blogs and requests for help for the various systems. To me debian looked like the one to try. I used my last working Windows system to download the basic CD and installed it. I messed around and finally broke that system, and installed it again. That was very satisfying, being able to break it and not have to pay to re-install it. I was hooked on Independence from Installation key codes that only work once. Later I added xfce and now I will not ever worry about Windows again. I am still learning, and finding that GNU/linux makes sense. I am loving the Independence, freedom, and ability to try anything without worrying about irreparable harm to the machine, or my finances.