Earlier this evening I was having trouble with USB. All USB devices stopped working, so I could only access the computer via remote desktop. This has happened before, but the usual fix (shut down the computer, unplug it, wait 30 seconds for all power to drain) didn’t work. So then I got back in via remote desktop and removed all USB devices from device manager. That resulted in total failure – they were detected as “unknown device” instead.
After a few hours of struggling with system restore and the Intel driver update and getting nowhere, I finally broke down and ran the Windows XP setup that I had long ago copied off the CD and slipstreamed with Service Pack 3.
That worked, but then I couldn’t get Windows Update to work. I had to uninstall IE8, reboot, and now it is just finishing up the 57 updates that it required once IE7 was working.
Microsoft is not my friend at the moment.