Well I have stressed this thing a few times in the past. But can not just stop doing it. When it comes to software, the best things out there are free. Anti virus, firewall, word processors, web browsers, aren't they? If you don't know, here are a few examples: avast, comodo, open office, firefox. If you haven't tried them you should; without delay.
Coming to the OS, should we still be paying for license fee for Windows to Microsoft when we don't actually need it. Just think, what do I use your computer for? An average user, does mostly net surfing, playing with office applications, image editing and watching media files. 80% of time, being on Windows is not even needed. Only some hardware items (printers, mobile phones etc which you use with your PC) are shipped with windows only drivers, and PC games are released for Windows platform. Leaving them apart, linux is the better alternative to using windows.
Linux!! Crazy, who has the time and skill to be using it. Agreed. But wait, there is a linux for human beings, it is called Ubuntu. Its free, open source, and comes with technical support and regular updates.
It has one of the easiest and fastest installation process, and can work from within windows. No need to format your PC what so ever. No technical expertise needed. And it comes in many flavors, and for different computer architectures (desktop, netbook, server, 32bit, 64 bit etc). Just give it a try, and see the difference. You will fall in love with it.
If you have trouble downloading the ISO file (installation disc image), just fill up the form at https://shipit.ubuntu.com/, and the Ubuntu guys will dispatch the CD to you for free.
Follow the Ubuntu Logo on right hand pane of this blog for more details.