Hi, I have a Dell computer with XP. Back when I bought my computer from Dell, I did not receive a CD disk copy of the XP installed on my machine. Is this normal? Do other companies provide a copy of the operating system installed on the PC they sell you? What happens if my hard drive crashes and I need to install a new one? Do I have to buy a new copy of XP to install? Or can I get Dell (or someone) to provide me with a copy of XP to install? Also, I have Symantec's Goback on my machine and this does not play nice with Acronis's disk backup program. I don't want to go the route of buying a full drive backup hard drive and the Acronis package to do backups. So, do I need to get a $200 copy of XP (before it goes away) as a backup in case my hard drive ever goes bad? I do not want to possibly be stuck restoring on the machine I presently have with Vista some day. I'm trying to understand how the PC world works with regard to backup copies of the operating system, etc... Is Dell's practice of providing no CD of your OS normal? This seems like a rip-off. How does the average consumer cope with this when their hard drive dies? They have to buy another OS package? The average consumer doesn't give this a thought until it happens. I know it didn't occur to me at the time I bought my PC. Any thoughts or explanations would be appreciated. Is my idea right -- do you have to buy another OS if you don't have a CD copy of the OS on your machine? If so, why doesn't Dell provide a copy? As you can tell I'm not too savvy with how things are done in the PC world.