Windows is prone to attacks because it lets the user do what it wants without having to constantly use the command line. Sure linux is less prone to viruses, but it sacrifices usability for security.
If you're one of the people that thinks they need the OS to hold their hand for them, go ahead and use linux. Vista on it's own does not simply "get" viruses, and I'm confident enough in my own ability to feel safe.
I do not understand how you found linux to be a coddling operating system, and windows to be a full suite power house. I think many people would argue the opposite.
And when you can simply read and email and acquire a worm then use windows does just "get" viruses. For the most part a smart user can avoid viruses easily, and at this moment I don't even use an AV with windows because I am confident in all my downloads. Still, linux is far superior in the security aspects.