I'm answering my own question around here!
I transferred everything successfully using Belkin Easy Transfer USB cable. I also backed everything up on CD's. I went from XP to Vista as that's what the Dell came with.
I got a Dell Inspiron. Unbelievably fast, lightweight, and pretty.
Then I returned the Belkin cable and got a refund. Hey, sometimes you gotta....
I could have paid to stay with XP but I didn't. Vista is fine so far. The look is different and much simpler. The desktop menu looks like Safari. I remember Windows 95 and how much more complex it was. This Vista is baby stuff compared to 95.