Most people i know like the idea of buying something once and then not having to worry about paying per month or per year for it to keep working. So I don't think that this subscription thing will work all that well for something as critical and necessary as an operating system. I know i certainly won't be going for it... it will seem more like hiring a computer than buying one. I agree... for someone who isn't already used to windows (or is willing to change), linux is a great alternative. Given the right distro it's fairly self explanatory and unless they want to play the latest games it should do fine. And there are very few exploits and viruses that work on linux so it would be much safer. And as an added bonus it's not only free but no anti-virus/spyware software needs to be bought and installed either.