Sorry, Mike, but NO, your problems are with the hardware, not the software by the sounds of it. Although WINDOWS 7 has removed hundreds of problems that VISTA is known for, you should think of analyzing the problems and fixing them FIRST. All HP laptops have a built in COMPLETE system RESTORE function that totally erases all your software on the harddisk, and then copies a NEW, ORIGINAL version back onto the main partition C:, from a hidden partition on the end of the harddrive. Thanks for adding hp 6700 info... the key is F11, etc., and when you first turn on the computer, you tap that key repeatedly until you are in the RESTORE MENU. You were supposed to make back up DVD disks IMMEDIATELY when you got the laptop new. If not, they can be ordered from HP. Hopefully you have the backup partition already ON the harddrive.
This would be my first line of attack. You have given really nice details on what you have already done, so I will not even mention anti-virus/registry solutions - these are obviously NOT your problem. If you do a FACTORY restore, then you will instantly "KNOW" for certain if the Windows VISTA file corruption WAS the problem. You will have a brand new, 100% new version of VISTA, and if it works like brand new, then you will know that the entire VISTA operating system was corrupt, and THAT was the source of your problems. If, however, after doing a FACTORY restore, you still have the same problems, then the HARDWARE is to blame, and no matter what software you put on, like Win 7 etc., you will still have the same errors. Just from the description of your problems, they appear to me to be classic OVER HEATING of the CPU ( Central Processing Unit - the PENTIUM computer chip ). When the tiny cooling fan and the aluminum and copper heatsinks get clogged with ordinary dust, the cooling system cannot get rid of the HUGE amounts of heat generated by the CPU. In many instances, the tiny fan will get so clogged that it stops, which makes its tiny wire coils even hotter, and it dries up the tiny drops of oil in the bearings, and seizes solid. As a quick test, turn on the laptop and where the outlet holes for the hot air being blown out by the fan are situated, get very close and see if there is a steady stream of warm air coming out. You should actually be able to hear the tiny whir of the fan as it turns on and changes speed - the hotter the CPU gets, the faster the fan spins. IF there is no stream of warm air and no "fan" noise, then you should shut off the computer immediately, and find the problem. If you search the internet, there are instructions to remove the entire KEYBOARD. It has a top plastic cover by the hinge, which pops up, and then gently, you can remove the thin ribbon cable, CAREFULLY, and then, you can look down at the heat sink and fan assembly, found in the top, Left, corner. If it is all blocked with DUST, then you use the OUTLET exhaust from a shop vac, ( which I prefer ) or get a can of compressed air from a computer store with a tiny red plastic straw, and you blow out all the visible dust. You can blow air into the INLET for the cooling system, and the outlet, and try to blow air around the fan itself. Everything should be shiny aluminum and copper. This is the #1 killer of laptops. When you see the fan, use something tiny to spin the blades. If they will not spin easily, then the oil in the bearings has dried out, and they are seized. Most people would just buy a new, entire cooling assembly - used, on eBay about $10 to $25, but I just remove the tiny screws holding in the plastic fan assembly, remove the cap on the center bearings, and use ordinary 10W30 motor oil or whatever oil you use in a car, and put a few drops in, and move the fan blades back and forth until they are free again. I use a tiny syringe from a printer ink refill kit to get the drops of oil in the bearing cavity, since you cannot get the oil on the plastic fan assembly- it attracts dust, which is the last thing you want. I also use ordinary black electrical tape to seal the bearing cavity when I am done. High quality tape, such as 3M, resists oil, and heat, and sticks as a great seal. It will NOT stick on the surface if you spill ANY oil at all on the plastic, so if this happens, you must be certain to use soap and a damp cloth to wipe of the oil, and dry the area with a kleenex, and start over! Once the fan and heatsinks are all shiny and working, the fan should keep working for years, as long as the oil is SEALED in bearings, and does not leak out under the electrical tape. You could check in a year to make certain that nothing is leaking.
The ANSWER above had to be cut in half since yahoo kept stating "ANSWER TOO LONG". This is unfortunate, since I gave you step by step details.
The link to recover HP6700 from partition on HDD is: http://h20000.www2.hp.com/bizsupport/TechSupport/Document.jsp?objectID=c00809678
Good luck! robindustygraves at kidbots.com
I have been working on, and fixing computers for over 25 years, and often get NON- working computers, since no one knows what to do with them. My tiny website,< kidbots.com > is all about saving and using older computers, as opposed to grinding, chopping, and smashing them, in typical "recycling". I see laptops with identical problems to yours very often. Link to take it apart to see fan and heatsink is:
Note that to access the keyboard and fan, you probably only have to take out the screws at the HINGE top area, under the strip of plastic that pops up, and the keyboard. Do the simplest thing FIRST. GOOD LUCK , robindustygraves