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Is it safe to blend Win9x, Win2000 and XP OSes?

Hi I'm trying to upgrade some systems in a realty/tax business. These are mostly older PCs running Windows 95 or 98. I was about to order several Dell P4 2.0 machines and was considering XP w/Office Pro.

I'm not familiar with XP and was thinking that it may be safer to upgrade to Win2000, since one user still has some old DOS apps (realty apps). But I have one user who wants XP -- he works with marketing, and wants to work with digital photography and PowerPoint. Is it wise to blend the OSes? Can we keep the simple tax workstations on Win2000 and power users on XP?

Also, there isn't a network -- no server because of the fear factor. :) But I have each station connected via NICSs to a switch for Internet connection, and would like to eventually build a peer-to-peer network for file and print sharing. What do you think? TIA.

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You shouldn't have any problems using XP. In fact, XP is a bit more compatible with older legacy applications (i.e. DOS) than Windows 2000.

This was first published in May 2002

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