Having reached the point of almost tearing my hair out due to the sheer inadequacy of Vista, I decided to bite the bullet and upgrade to the 32-bit version of Windows 7.
The whole process ran very smoothly and only took around three hours from start to finish. However, the really amazing thing now is that I've yet to find an app that worked with Vista but doesn't work with W7. For my money, I now have a fast and stable box which no longer freezes at the drop of a hat and actually shuts down when asked.
So, on the one hand I'm left wondering why Microsoft didn't release a service pack for Vista which addressed all the faults that W7 seems to have fixed, whilst on the other, I'm thrilled to bits with Windows 7. Shame on you, Microsoft, for not supporting your Vista users.
Whilst certain differences in the new interface such as 'Libraries' may take some getting used to, if you're thinking of upgrading from the loathesome Vista, simply do not hesitate.