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As for the 99$ charge for Xandros, the chap who uses it at my LUG recently posted that there is a "lite" version thats only 39$ but no crossover etc.
It occured to me that as mandrakesoft advertise 9.0 power pack for about £60 (about the 99$ mark) and the main difference between standard and powerpack versions being the commercial software perhaps it's not quite as steep as it appears.
Also, don't forget, you are into linux big time and have considerable knowledge about it (don't sell yourself short) whereas I just want to get to the stage where I have a decent, working desktop distribution to negate most/all of Micr0$0ft products - as a Micr0$0ft refusenik (moral, ethical and social grounds).
But who knows, as my knowledge progresses, maybe I'll try to get to the stage that you've already attained. At the moment, I will have to make do with being the bloke who can't even manage to install software unless it's in rpm/urpmi format, let alone know what FTP actually means/does