My biggest complaint about the new BYC is losing your post before you are done. It just wiped mine again(5x), and this is a long response.
As I was saying, for those of us with older systems, your term of baggage is not really clear, but it is an important concept. I will try and flesh it out so those peeps w/ performance problems can perhaps find relief. I hope my analogy doesn't sound too silly, but I think it will help folks picture what is going on. My computer is an 4 year old desktop w/ dual processor, 2Gigs of RAM more HD than I will ever use. I run FireFox 11 for my browser (still have IE but rarely open it) and my productivity programs are Open Office, I deleted all MS Office programs once I found OO met all my needs. My operating system is Window XP 2000, that is automatically updated.
For those of us on older systems it is critical that we maintain a balance in our memory storage/usage; updated our programs and Do Housekeeping. Each of these areas keep our systems up to speed.
In the Memory aspect, the relationship of the RAM to the HD is like a kitchen counter to the pantry. The RAM is your work area and the HD is the storage area for your stuff. It is an easy and fairly inexpensive upgrade to add RAM as long as your Motherboard still has room for more or larger memory chips. This is like putting a table in the kitchen for more work room, providing there is space. Another aspect is virtual memory - the memory space allotted for moving data around. It can be adjusted to increase the size to allow more movement. That memory is rather like a hanging basket to hold the things your aren't using at the moment to give you more room on the counter. One adjustment that can be made is to set your virtual memory at about 3/4 capacity, the normal setting is far less. This setting is in the System folder, under the advanced tab. Google increase virtual memory for instructions. This should help prevent thrashing, which is when your computer is using all its resources to move data from RAM to HD to give your room to work. It is like having to put the spoon away to use the pan, to move it to whisk, to move it to crack an egg to move it.... see the hour glass yet?
Next to updating your programs, do it regularly. Most new systems come with the auto update enabled, but in the older machines it might need to be done. You can check that by clicking Start>Control Panel>System>Auto Update tab. Firefox will notify you when an update is available.
Then the old fashioned housekeeping tasks. Disc Clean up and Disc Defragmenter. The first is just what it says, is cleans up your hard drive freeing up space for better organization. Disc De frag rearranges the data to write it on the HD disc in continuous related files. The data that makes up the page of BYC you are using can be stored in the order it may be used or if your HD is fragmented it will be stored where ever there is room on the HD. Obviously the later storage takes longer to retrieve. Both these programs are found All Programs>Accessories>System tools> Disc cleaner or Disc Deframentor . The programs are best use, cleaner first then def rag second. If you haven't done this before it can take a long time, run it while something good is on TV or read a book. You may chose the files you wish cleared in the Disc Clean up, it will ask you before anything is deleted. Sometimes it can open up a couple 3 megs of memory even when done regularly. Then run the defragmentor. There is an Analyze button, and clicking it will tell you the percentage that is fragmented and whether it is needed or not. Rarely is it not needed. If your machine has never been defragged it is possible the process could take hours, have a good nights sleep. Very rarely it will not defrag because there is just not enough stable HD left. Time for a service call.
I have talked about a lot, but if you do this, you should see improvement in your performance, especially if your then download and start using FireFox. Do not remove IE, it can cause problems as it shares lots of files with other windows functions.
One last thing to look at to improve performance is what other programs do you run when you visit BYC? My DH listens to Slacker the entire time he is on the computer, runs a highly graphical screen saver, which runs continuously even when it is hidden, weather bug and I don't know what else. He also has 4 gigs of RAM. This type of behavior is like wearing ankle weights to grocery shop, You can do it, but is it worth the effort?
Sorry to the length, but I hope it helps