I've been and I still am a very enthusiastic user of good old Windows98SE; however, due to a number of practical issues I'm now considering to install a more recent OS (maybe in dual-boot with 98SE, if possible).
I need some practical advice from MS OS knowledgeable/veteran users here, as I'm deciding between 2000 Pro and XP Pro.
Here are my priorities:
1 - Maximum compatibility. To be able to run as many different games and apps as possible, both new and old, not only PC but also including Amiga and ZX Spectrum emulators and stuff such as MAME. Driver support is naturally also good.
2 - Maximum performance. I'm the kind of guy who disables window and menu animations in the OS if that means 0,001% more speed and free memory. I don't use a PC to run OSes, I use it to run games and apps and the OS isn't, and shouldn't ever be, but a mere tool to accomplish that goal. As such, it must be as lightweight and transparent as possible and use memory and resources efficiently (i.e. leave them for the said games and apps as opposed to steal them for itself).
3 - Maximum privacy and OS obedience. I don't like ratware and I don't like OSes with "self-initiative". As stated, the OS is a mere tool. As such, it must obey me at all times. If I say disable this, the OS must disable it. If I say do this this way, the OS must do it that exact way. If I say I don't want my personal information being sent to obscure corporate scum, I mean it. Probably everyone who can help me with this topic knows what I'm talking about, possibly even better than myself.
Let that much needed advice come.