Well, this morning I downloaded and installed the March CTP of Avalon, and it turned my Thinkpad into a vegetable. Internet Explorer would no longer launch, so I couldn't finish the rest of the install or do, well, anything else.
I pondered leaving my Thinkpad in the broken state and switching back to Firefox (which I haven't used since it lost my bookmarks back in January). But I quickly remembered how Windows Update and quite a few web sites still require IE, and decided it'd probably be a good idea to try to fix the problem instead.
Unfortunately, 6 hours and several uninstall/reinstalls and complete system restores later, still no dice. IE's still broken, and multiple restores combined with multiple software uninstalls left Windows in a pretty funky state (basically, it keeps telling me it needs to install updates, and then that it is unable to install updates. wooohooo.)
So, I suppose it's time to reinstall XP. In all fairness, during the period of time between buying my Thinkpad over a year and a half ago and now, Windows XP has held up unbelievably well. I guess this was inevitable, and installing brand new betas of the .NET Framework and Visual Studio 2005 didn't help my cause. It could've happened on any operating system. Note to self: no more cutting edge development on my personal computers.
Anyhow, I'm gonna head out of the lab, grab some food, and get ready for the next 6 hour OS + software re-install party.