Damn it, Rob! Forget about PS and switch already to the only tool a photographer like you needs: Lightroom.
I keep upgrading by inertia: I processed exactly 1 (one) photograph in CS4 (at least a major photograph, and as much I can remember -- which by itself says a lot: if I can't remember, it probably either did not happen or does not really matter). I then upgraded to CS5 as Adobe threatened to shorten the generation you can upgrade from to one: I NEVER EVEN OPENED CS5, and CS6 was there. I upgraded to it and, yes, opened it, but have not processed a single major photograph in it yet. There you go: why would you have to learn from your own mistakes, when you can learn from mine?
I am of the belief that only Photoshop allows the use of Layers. I could be totally mistaken, and I repeat that my concern at the moment is for when the current XP machine flops onto its back, legs up in the air, but dead. Obviously, being of normal disposition, I shall simply have to walk away.
Iím not really at all in love with computers and programmes and stuff like that; I use PS6 because it does all I need or can think of needing, and as a consequence I just donít read up on new stuff very often, so perhaps there are other systems out there that do Layers etc. but I also know that Iím a pretty slow learner at things such as Photoshop and learning curves arenít things I approach with love. Were there courses available where I could see what's being done and ask questions in real time, it would be a different matter. Basically, thatís why I was so in love with the film version of photography: I found it extremely easy to bend to my needs and it just didnít cause me any anxiety at all, which digital usually has with each new phase.
However, something that Isaac has just written offers a novel prospect: my other computer, this one on which I do my Internet travels, is Vista, so if the worst comes to the worst, it could move sideways across the benchÖ
Thanks for you collective concerns, anyhow; I realise that I must be quite a technically frustrating prospect at times, but thatís the nature of the lad. I use Ďladí in a tongue-in-cheek way, as you no doubt guessed.