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Best way to run M$ windows apps on linux ?

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hi everyone,
i plan on getting rid of my windows partitions. but that's big deal because i need to run a few (exotic) programs that are made for windows. i need to find a way to use them in linux, be it through a windows emulator or a computer emulator (or whatever).
please don't tell me to find linux equivalents to these programs i need to run, there's just nothing similar on linux.
on some of those programs i need audio to work.
so far i tried wine, qemu (with kqemu), and a combination of qemu and vmplayer (kind of "free" vmware).
my feelings are the following :
- wine improved A LOT during the past year (i really mean it), but my programs are a little buggy (at best). that does not make the usable for day to day use.
- qemu is sooooo slooooow it is barely usable. it took me 4 hours to get a working installation of windows xp (ok, i was multitasking, but still. for the first time ever my system swapped - could this be a memory leak ?)
- qemu + kqemu is toooo sloooooow as well (i suppose when they say near-native speed, it means 1/10 to 1/2 of native speed)... i've been very very disapointed.
- on qemu (and kqemu) i haven't tried the programs i need yet, the windows install process finished too late in the night...
- qemu + vmplayer :  qemu is used to generate an image which is then used by vmplayer. i used this trick on gentoo once, and i can tell you this was the best solution i tried so far. usable speed, functional programs. but i didn't achieve to get the sound workind (might need a bit of tuning).
apart from those ones, do you know of usable solutions to get windows apps running on linux ? i need them to just works at reasonable speed, with audio, and, if possible, printing.
any tricks that could improve speed or compatibility are appreciated as well.


vmware-server isnt 'for server emulation' but that can be one of it's uses.
vmware player doesnt allow you to create vm's. vmware server does. vmware server is able to do *almost* anything that vmware desktop can do. It's got the added benefit that if X crashes, or you close the frontend X app, the vm's still keep running on the daemon.
So it could be considered to be oriented towards usage for servers - I myself ran a openbsd server on it for a while. -- but it doesnt have to be used for that, and I use it for testing other distros, and I have Win XP installed to an image too.
vmware server does support sound, and im pretty sure you can make images that will work in vmplayer.

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