Want XP on the HP Mini? Who are you and how many units do you want?

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HpminixpdowngradeThe HP Mini product page indicates you can order your notebook with Microsoft Windows Vista and included geniune XP disk for a downgrade, but there’s some interesting fine print. According to HP, in order to qualify for the downgrade, you have to be a business, government agency or educational entity that will be ordering 25 or more units with the same image. Here’s the official language:“Windows Vista Business disk also included for future upgrade if desired. To qualify for this downgrade an end user must be a business (including governmental or educational institutions) and is expected to order annually at least 25 customer systems with the same custom image.”If I read this right, this qualification applies to HP doing the downgrade for you because it’s a footnote to this OS specification:“Genuine Windows Vista Business downgrade to Genuine Windows XP Professional installed”I could be reading this wrong, but if not, it doesn’t look like you need to be buying 25 units in order to get an XP disk. I suspect that HP doesn’t want to get into the imaging business for consumers, but for high volume business partners, they likely would. Laptoping reads it differently and thinks you need to be a qualifying entity or business for XP. I personally think it’s confusing either way and HP should consider clarifying the options. I don’t see why an individual couldn’t or shouldn’t have the option to have an XP disk with their HP Mini.

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> I suspect that HP doesn’t want to get into the imaging business for consumers

Right, but anyone in their right mind (sorry, James! ;) ) would probably choose XP over Vista due to the very poor performance (mine didn’t even play the Vista startup jingle without skipping). I think it was a colossal mistake to offer the machine with Vista.

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