i have a Compaq Presario v6000z from Hp, and i love it (i'm using it right now).
For you, go for an HP pavilion from the home and home office section in the entertainment subsection. Or a dell with the same specs:
Get one with a dual core (or a 4 core if u can) processor. get as large a hard drive as you can, and as much RAM as you can afford (or, buy as little as you can, and order more from Newegg.com for a much better price. it's up to you). Get an optical drive with the ability to burn and read to DVD+/-/R/RW (which by default means it will burn to and read every form of CD). Make sure it has a lot of USB hubs, and if you can get it with firewire, go for it. When it comes to Operating System. I recommend Windows Vista Home premium, business, or ultimate. (go for ultimate if you can afford it) Make sure it has built in wi-fi. A built in webcam is optional, but nice to have.
you need antivirus:
download AVG free. it is free and it is the best anti-virus program i have ever used.
Spybot: Search And Destroy:
it is free, and is a great program.
P.S. if you can afford the mac, go for it
I believe that whatever doesn't kill you simply...makes you...stranger.
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