I used my uncle's DVD, installed it without a keycode, and used the
grace period. The grace period wasn't over, yet I reformatted and
installed Windows XP Professional SP2. I don't believe that is illegal as I was wishing only to evaluate it.
I realized that I did sound as if I was telling everyone to get Linux, however that was not what I meat. I shall now clarify. I have had many positive experiences with Linux, and only a few negative experiences. For example, try installing a lexmark printer on Linux... It's just NOT happening. However, it seems as though Microsoft has set the Personal Computer standards of peripherals and nearly everything can run on up-to-date Microsoft Windows systems. Yet I believe with alot of effort from Micro$oft, Windows could be as stable as i've seen Linux. With a program I use called Cedega, I have ran games like Wolfenstein Enemy Territory, Grand Theft Auto III, Uplink=) and even software such as Adobe Photoshop CS2 v9.0. Plus I love the prices that Linux OSes are =]
As both a nerd and a Certified PC and Networking Technician, I would strongly advise those who are looking into a new operating system to explore. If you want to look at what Windows Vista does, then play with it at Circuit City or Staples, or where ever you can get ahold of the ability to use it. If you want to see into Linux, then download a LiveCD of what ever system you wish and try it on your computer. The best way to learn what you like is not to learn to like it, but to get a hands on experience with it and just play. If it does what you want and how you want it then get that system. Don't let anyone tell you what your tastes in operating systems are, but let them give you suggestions.
To freitasm: I believe you may have misunderstood me. I am the type that would say "ok. If it says it will degrade my system's performance... then let's see if the performance degradation is worth how nice it looks." My answer to that question was no.
To TonyHughes: Your laptop may have been able to run Aero fine, but my Radeon Xpress 1100 has 128MB of shared memory, giving my computer only 384MB of RAM to use. After my experience with Aero, I asked around and all of my technician buddies said they would only give their customers the opportunity to purchase and have Vista installed on their computer when the computer has 1GB of RAM or more. I have even heard one say that he would look again at Vista when Service Pack 1 comes out. "...Maybe then it'll have better hardware support and stability" He said.