A few pros and cons...
Before mentioning anything, what is the network going to be used for?
Are there existing Windows client machines? Or are there certain Windows programs that are required to run?
The most cost-effective solution for a network would be to have a whole bunch of thin clients networked to a powerful server.
Are they new computers or old?
No, Samba does not let you run Windows programs; it allows you to view files on Windows machines over a network. Wine lets you (mostly) run Windows programs.
If you're planning on doing OS comparisons, are you installing part Linux and part Windows desktops?
- Your server will crash a lot less often.
- Cheaper. Especially if you run thin clients
- Not prone to viruses.
- Runs better than Windows on older hardware.
- (Runs better than Windows on newer hardware).
- It is unfamiliar to you, therefore will be harder to set up.
- Certain programs intended for Windows may or may not run properly, (but there will most likely be an alternative written for Linux, and the ones that don't will most likely be able to run under Wine or CrossOver Office et al.)
- Certain hardware may be incompatible. Mostly everything is supported, but if you were to, say, get a printer, you better make sure it works in Linux. (Mine doesn't. Yet.