for well under $1000. Unfortunately the lightest and most portable tend to cost more. I'm partial to Lenovo as they do cater to the business crowd more than some others. MS does offer something called "Anytime Upgrade" with Windows 7 but, personally, I'd not buy a PC that immediately required a more capable OS. I'm going to buy it with what I want already on it. If Home versus Pro with Win 7 is anything like with XP, the biggest advantage for business use is the ability to join a domain. As well, security is a bit more scalable with Pro versions. About the only decision I can think at this point was whether to go with 64 bit or 32 bit. If you have such as printer drivers that need to be installed and you want 64 bit, you'll need to check to see if drivers are currently available for what you already have.
Some of the laptops I have looked at appear to be marketed with Windows 7 Home but not Win 7 Pro.
I need to be able to run Windows 7 Professional but I don't have a need for high end graphics or super fast processing speed. I'm not playing games or running Photoshop or anything like that. Mostly I'm either web browsing or accessing my employer's network using a Citrix Server site (which is where the 'Home' windows versions break down). I don't even require a built-in optical drive. Nor do I need a really large screen. Portability matters, though, which is why I've been looking at small/light computers. There are a number of possibilities from companies like ASUS that look like good matches except the inexpensive choices always seem to have Win 7 Home Premium.
That makes me wonder if it would be reasonable to buy a laptop with the 'home' version of Windows 7 and then upgrade to the 'professional' version. I'm not sure it is a good idea but I've read that it should be possible.
Are there special issues I need to be aware of if I want to upgrade a laptop from Win 7 Home Premium to Win 7 Professional?