torontotl, i was tossing up between the sony s380, or the highest model of the FS series in australia, or the m40. unfortunately (because i like sony), it was a very quick/easy decision, because the sony laptops simply don't have anything to match whats under the hood of competitors, and they're overpriced, yet very stylish.
thankfully in australia the M40 comes with xp pro (infact, most laptops in australia come with pro), so i didn't have to do anything regading this.
as for the utilities, i'm pretty sure a link on the american or canadian site let you download all of these exe files individually.
oh, and incase anybody else is freaking out about potential problems with the m40, i can reiterate that mine is problem free.
no dead pixels, no high pitch noise from the fan/cpu, no problem with pulling out the ac power cable while running (or putting it back in), no problem with wifi or bluetooth, no blocked off pci express slot.... not a single thing wrong with it