Stranger things have happened. It won't hurt to try and if it doesn't work you can always uninstall SP3
Go to Microsoft's Windows Update and you would need to do the Critical Updates.
I'm not sure if it will work and if not then what we need to do is to get your Data backed up and then do a format and fresh install.
Ya' know what? I think I'm ready to just take the steps you suggested (ie. retrieve my data and do a format / fresh install)
However, please allow me to ask a few selective questions before we proceed with that:
1) What type of data can/will I recover?
2) I do a TON of Photoshop work. Will I be able to recover my .jpgs/.gifs/.psd files?
3) Music, games, software recoverable?
I guess basically what I'm asking, is will I be able to TRULY recover a majority of data/software/programs? I hope & pray you tell me "YES", but I'm ready to hear the worst and just start anew.
Thanks as always!