Yesterday something got messed up with my Apache installation (part of the WampServer package), I tried reinstalling it, I tried several other versions, nothing seemed to work. It kept throwing "Unhandled win32 exception", and after several hours of trying to fix it, I gave up and decided to reinstall.
On the way home I thought about maybe trying to install Vista (I got a Vista Business CD with the laptop), I heard all sorts of opinions about it and I decided to test it for myself (I tried it about a year ago on my old computer with only 1GB RAM, and I removed it after a week...).
The installation was very fast, about 20 minutes, drivers were easy to install (Dell's semi-automatic drivers cd is a brilliant idea).
I'm currently using Aero with "animate windows when minimizing and maximizing" disabled and it's very fast.
I haven't really installed much yet, so this is far from a true performance review, I'll probably know better in a couple of days.
The one thing I had a problem with is copying large file through network which kept hanging, but I found this forum thread that solved it by doing the following:
netsh int tcp set global autotuninglevel=disabled
netsh int tcp show global
Receive Window Auto-Tuning Level : disabled