|IMO, IE8 is not a good browser. I have IE8 on Windows 7 but use FF3. Any internet issues could be due to IE8 settings. |
IE 7 is still available. Look at the link below for IE7. If you have a listing for SP3 in Control Panel> add remove programs you should be able to remove it.
That said, SP3 should not have a big impact on the speed compared to SP2. SP3 is more secure and has many improvements.
Before trashing SP3 I suggest you trouble shoot the laptop.
Some things to check:
insufficient hard drive space
hard drive not running in a DMA mode
drivers not installed or wrong driver/s installed
verify you are only using one AV program and one firewall
make sure Windows is not downloading something when you first start up