Broke out the old laptop (HP dv2037 Intel Core Duo 1.6 x 1.6 GHz), and installed an Intel X25 80 gig SSD. The SSD set me back $250.00, albeit it saved me somewhere in the neighborhood of $500.00. Then installed XP back on the laptop, and have to say that was a good purchase.
The laptop has a new life. The SSD improved the performance seven fold. It is still hard for me to believe that something so simple can create the improvement in performance that this new drive did. Now when I bring up a large Word or Excel document it seems it almost loads up immediately. Example: 297 page Word document loaded in five seconds. A 2.5 meg Excel file loaded in approximately 6.5 seconds. This is an improvement between 10 to 14 seconds.
Now it is time to upgrade the memory from one gig to three, then load in Win 7. Should be interesting to see how well it will work using Win 7.