Sounds to me like you failed to do your due diligence before buying. You rushed out and bought something, just assuming things would work, but didn't actually bother to check, or even run the Vista Upgrade Adviser that takes most of the work out of it.
Can you say for certain that those programs would even work with the 32-bit Vista? Microsoft likes to try and maintain some level of backwards compatibility, but you're talking about programs that are about 10 years old at this point. At some point, a line needs to be drawn on providing backwards compatibility. It's like clearing out the old brush in a forest to prevent fires and clear the way for new plants to grow.
Your only real legitimate complaint is ZoneAlarm. And that too could have been avoided if you had done your homework before buying. It might have helped you avoid the mistake of buying an HP system as well. Oh well... Just be sure you learn from this experience. Any time you do a major upgrade like the operating system, assume every single program and bit of hardware will NOT work until you have reliable confirmation otherwise. Then plan contingency scenarios for what you'll do if the time comes to pull the trigger on the OS update, and some important bit of software or hardware isn't supported.
And we're not even getting into the fact that you're using the prices you paid for these things when they're new, not their value today. You could very easily sell these no longer supported bits of hardware and recoup at least SOME of the expense of buying a new one. You'll never get it all, but you can at least get SOMETHING. And you're keeping the stuff out of the landfill.
So maybe instead of sitting around feeling sorry for yourself and trying to get other people to feel sorry for you, you should try being a little proactive about it. Learn from your mistake so that you never make it again, and then do what you can to lessen the current blow (i.e. selling the printer and scanner) as much as you can.
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