SSDs make a huge difference, since their data transfer if you buy a good one. For Example I have the Vertex 3 from OCZ 60 GByte for windows and the data transfer while copying is about 350 MByte/s while with my normal 1 TByte HDD (Samsung 7200rpm) I got up to 108 MByte/s max.
Almost everyone who tried a SSD sais that will never come back to HDs. Using an SSD will make you understand how much the HD is a bottleneck in everyday tasks. The real advantage of SSD is not only the higher transfer rate, but is the lower latency (microseconds, while for HD is misured in milliseconds), and everytime you open a software installed in the SSD you will notice how faster it is.
SSDs are made with better memories than cheap USB sticks, so they are less prone to failure, they don't have mechanical parts, so are more tough than HDs.
The problem of the limited rewriting of the cell is not a real problem: generally they can reach 5000 rewriting and if you consider a complete rewriting of the SSD each day you will see that the SSD will work perfectly for even more than 10years, and in a normal use you write some GB (less than 10) per day, not 80 or 120GB. So you can be sure that your SSD will become extremely obsolete before having all the cell in read-only mode.
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Thanks for the replies. Around tax return time here in the USA I will go get one. Samsung seems to be the recommended brand so I will go in that direction.
Google "windows license key reader" you should find a utility to give you the serial. Then download an ISO image of windows, I "think" you can get it from Microsoft's site, if not you should be able to get it elsewhere (this is legal, only key distribution is not allowed)
Or use Ghost to make an image of your C drive and put the image back on the SSD, even so I always reinstall my windows and indeed otherwise through how Refraction said how to do it.