Ok... having read all of this.. I offer the following :::
Last year, I bought a nice new PC - it came with Windows Vista Ultimate. AMD Quad-Core... a ROCKING fast machine (or at least, it was supposed to be)..
It spent more time in its own self-repair processing than it did running and doing what I wanted it to do. No help from Microshaft of course, because... customer support doesn't exist there - or at least, if you CALL for customer support, it goes like this...
HP :: The problem is with Microsoft, call them.
MICROSOFT :: HP is responsible for giving you support
HP :: We can't really help you here.
MICROSOFT :: We can't really help you here.
AXE :: Please... don't smash me into your computer, it's brand new.
Consider smashing me into the skull of a Microsoft
JIMMINY CRICKET :: Don't even think of it...
OK.. so what to do?
I liberated myself, and my entire household. I offer you all the following EXCELLENT solution, and the total cost to implement? $0. Special skills required? None.HTTP://WWW.UBUNTU.COM
My quad-core now runs like the rocket it's supposed to be. Crashes? 0. Grief? 0. MS Office compatibility? YES !!! Cost... FREE!
Do yourself a favor and give Linux a shot - it's now easy enough for home use, and doesn't have to be confined to gurus and corporations anymore.