16079 posts since 2 Dec, 2003, from Nashville, TN
I will say that I personally love Windows 7. While not without it's issues, I have found it to be FAR more stable than any previous incarnation, and it runs smooth as butter for the higher level resource intensive work I do with video and motion graphics. And it's a pretty flippin' SWEET gaming OS, if you're into that(it does things that XP can't do because of DX10 and DX11- pretty much the entire gaming world has moved on from XP).
Plus, overall I would argue that the file explorer is actually much better than XP in MOST areas. There are more options overall. When you mix in the new features in the task bar, the little things like the "switch to desktop" button in the bottom right corner or the ability to look through all your windows without switching to them, among other things, it's a pretty cool OS.
And it's more secure than XP.
When it comes to performance, for newer hardware, it's just better. It was designed for things that weren't even dreamed of when XP was created, and handles things like multi-core and 64-bit much better(XP 64-bit is a joke in comparison).
I can appreciate that somebody who uses XP faithfully might be a little peeved at a few of the changes, but honestly, that's just the nature of change. I think when you look at the overall picture, it really is the better OS for most people. YMMV, of course.