Thanks for the replies again guys. The info is very useful and appreciated.
Just had a quick look online and see I can get a 30gb vertex drive for approx £90 but that's about 3x more than I was planning on spending on a hard drive. I want one now, but not sure I can afford it. Do you guys really get a huge all round improvement with one of these?
What sort of rough boot time would typical for a cut down XP install, ie where you've simply installed that and not subsequently spent countless hours weeding out every last thing that may remove an extra millisecond? (I'm trying to brinwash myself into deciding one of these is 'necessary' )
And are they available in smaller sizes? I'd be WAY more likely to buy one if I could get say a 16gb drive for half the money. To be honest, for the sake of the OS and a couple of apps, a 4 or 8gb one would likely do the job to keep cost down (and install other stuff on a secondary), but I'm not really finding any that size.