oh, btw, it's got this little W2K license sticker attacked on the bottom of the machine but it didn't come with any CD. Can I order one from IBM for free? or do i have to pay for it?
that sticker is your license no matter how you install w2k. so, you can either install w2k via the ibm recovery cds or you can install it with a copy of w2k using the number on the license sticker.
Or, since I have the W2K license code, i won't be breaking any law if i install W2K with this number?
you'd technically be breaking the license agreement if you install w2k without
using that number. but again, the recovery cd installation is also perfectly legal so you only need to worry about that license number if you install a clean version of w2k.
to get the recovery cds, call IBM at 800-388-7080 and select the option for parts tech support. tell them you want to get a set of w2k recovery cds for your X24. the normal cost for the cds is $35. please note that ibm will not, under any circumstances, send recovery cds for any other operating system (like xp) due to license restrictions.
good luck with your new X!