Choice between Windows XP Home, Media Center, or PRO

I am working with my son to build a new computer. We need to decide which Microsoft operating system to buy / install. We have a new ASUS motherboard and an Intel Pentium D 3.4GHz (dual core 64 bit). We also have a PCI express 16 graphics card. His primary use is gaming and also MS office applications for school.

I have pretty much ruled out XP Pro 64 because I am reading about lack of application and driver support, but open to input on this.

We need to choose between XP home, XP Media center, or XP pro (all 32 bit). I am not particularly concerned about Vista upgrade, although I do understand the upgrade path from XP Media includes the full graphical interface improvements in Vista Aero, and the upgrade from XP Home does not.

I would like some expert opinions.
12 answers Last reply
More about choice windows home media center
  1. forget home go with the one of the other 2 , I have both pro and media can't really tell the difference that much except that media version uses more cpu ;) but looks a bit better. IMO pro ;)
  2. Any will do, and Home is the cheapest. That's what I'd buy. Unless you need to use Remote Desktop services, or if you really don't trust your kid and want to set user-level access to certain files and folders, or if you currently have a Windows 2000 based home server, XP Home is what you need.
  3. home is not as stable as pro in my experience also there are somethings that pro is much easier to work with then home.
  4. XP Home is just as stable. In fact XP Pro is just a subset of features built upon XP Home. :roll:

    Please give examples of "somethings that pro is much easier to work with then home."
  5. softice, good luck running that in home ;)

    having used both I would never recommend xp home
  6. First of all, from the google search I just performed, it appears that softICE will indeed run with XP Home.

    Secondly, how many video gaming kids are going to have a $2000 piece of debugging software anyways? Talk about grasping at straws... :roll:
  7. listen, nothing for nothing, but you asked I told you. and just so you know for the second time, softice will not run on home it can't.

    now I can list more software but then you gonna give the same kind of answer as you did with softice.

    I know you know what you are talking about and from reading your other posts you are right pretty much almost every time.

    however on this one you are not right.

    so I hope you understand that i'm not tring to start a fight or anything and I respect you as your posts are respectable and I don't mean no disrespect however this one you are wrong about ;) and you are the one grasping the straws ;)
  8. To be frank, I concede that I have not used softICE, nor have I ever tried to install it on XP Home. I'm sure you probably know a LOT more about this program than I can ever hope to glean from a simple google search. Now I have no idea why this program will not run on XP Home, nor do I particularly care, but my hunch is that it probably has to do with the missing features of XP Home vs. Pro, and not because of any supposed instability issues you believe to be inherent in XP Home. If you know the exact reason for the incompatibility, by all means feel free to post it. More knowledge is never a bad thing. :wink:

    On the topic of the original post, is there any mainstream software you can think of that he or his kid might want to run on this gaming computer that will be hindered on XP Home? I cannot come up with anything. You may use software where XP Pro is required, but many people will never encounter this issue. You make it sound like I'm suggesting he go with XP Starter Edition here. :) XP Home, as its name implies, works very well for the home user market, and I would think gaming falls under that category. If XP Pro were only a few dollars more than XP Home, then it would make sense for everyone to buy it for the sake of extra compatibility, but when we're talking about a price difference of $50 or more, I feel the potential extra compatibility of XP Pro is not worth the added expense in this case. Obviously you feel different. I think we can agree to disagree on this one.

  9. Being used for gaming and Office, Home is the perfect choice. I'm with Joe on that.

    You could probably get it for $82-$85 (depends on the week's sales). I saw it once for $75. Next Tag is a good place to look.

    Pro is a software-engineered enhanced version of Home with extra security & networking features geared toward businesses.
  10. Some other questions that should be considered:

    Is this computer going to be stand-alone or on a network?

    If on a network, is this network going to have a domain?

    MCE is basically Pro with a fancy mulitmedia shell... it's able to join domains as Pro does, but this must be done on the initial setup of the machine.

    As for stability... they are all the same. They all use the same kernel... and they all use the same sets of drivers. The only difference between them is the features included. Based on your post, however... I would have to agree that Home would be the best (certainly the least expensive) choice. MCE is worth considering, but you most likely do not need all the extra features included with Pro.
  11. Hopefully, I will set up a network eventuall , but it will be for backups and possibly to share printers. Will not need a domain as far as I know.
  12. For the love of God, buy a fcuking PS3 & a Mac and stop arguing which turd can be polished to more of a shine, out of the three turds in question.
    A turd is a turd, and if it swims like a duck, looks like a duck and quacks like a duck but Joe Pesci says it's an hippopotamus then it's an hippopotamus.
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