Thanks all. I already have Technet account, but nothing up to running the server OS's, so I guess first thing is to try Win8 on the old machines to see how it runs.
We have 2 kids as well and they're becoming less convinced by the answer "No you can't have your own laptop cos I say you don't need one", which is fine until they genuinely need to do homework and I want to use a PC.
The Linux solutions I've tried will cover what they need - basic office type programs for their homework - but struggle with anything like photo editing. They also want to use Steam, which is unusable on Windows, but have to admit haven't tried the new Linux version.
I guess deep down I know that the sensible solution is to buy new standalones and replace the NAS (bought a Buffalo Linkstation years ago - probably worst gadget purchase ever), so I just need to get over the guilt of chucking stuff away...
As much as I think its an unusable mess from a UI perspective, there's no doubt that it does well on older hardware. This is a bonus of its resource use being so aggressively trimmed down to better fit low-powered tablet use.
Originally Posted by simpsonj