XP's setup incorporates a new feature that I liked, but couldn't get to work (which I later discovered was due to my High-speed internet connection's DNS server problems). It will check your version of setup files on the CD, and then check to see if there are newer versions on the internet. If so, you can choose to download them and use them instead. Here is what the screen looks like:
Again, thanks to my great cable company, I was unable to download the new files, so I pressed on anyway and used the ones on the cd. This is what you don't want to see…
Once you hit the Next button, you can go grab a soda and some popcorn, sit back and enjoy the show. Setup has now collected all the information it needs from you, and will just hum along all by itself while it updates your computer. It will copy the setup files and run just like the other installations of yesteryear. It even completes the installation with about two reboots (including the final boot into XP). It took my computer about 15 minutes to chug through it, and shouldn't be much longer on relatively newer systems. Mine is only a T-Bird 900, so you guys with the XP processors and fasters CD-ROMs should zip right on through.
At any rate, it's always interesting to read the little "billboards" that come up while it's working. The only thing you will be prompted for, is the OEM CD-Key we all love so much. Once all the grunt work is done, your computer is rebooted one last time, and after seeing the new little splash screen, you are welcomed by this beautiful sight: