I now have a Windows PC on my desktop --- using the Mac laptop as my main computer was making my back and neck ache. Here's what I've installed so far (in order):
  • Firefox
  • Thunderbird
  • Microsoft Office
  • Cygwin (including Gnu Make and MiKTeX)
  • Acrobat (for reading PDFs)
  • MWSnap (for screen captures)
  • Eclipse (for Java, and as a memory stress tester ;-))
  • Wing (for Python)
  • Emacs (I know, I know...)
  • A printer drive
  • Putty
  • SQLite
Everything else I need I got by checking out a repository from one of (quick count) four machines: Elapsed time: about two hours, during most of which I was reading mail and talking to people. Later: I have since added:
  • MiKTeX
  • Ghostscript and Ghostview
  • FreeRip
  • PDFCreator
  • Java 1.5
  • MyUninstall
  • Gnumeric (to read old grades files)