I posted these questions to discussions.apple.com and have received no help, so I thought I would come here and ask this community as everyone here always seems to be pretty helpful. I've been having two problems with my 15" 2.5ghz Penryn MBP: 1) Copying files (mostly larger than 1gb) to my thumb drive used to take less than a couple of minutes on my early 2008 15" Penryn MBP. Recently, however, copying large files to the same thumb drive is very slow and initially states that it will take 1+ hours, but after it gets going, it winds up taking about 10-15 minutes. Copying them off of the thumb drive back onto a colleagues macbook takes only 2-3 minutes. I've tried both USB ports on the computer, and I have the same problem with both. 2) I've used my optical drive and Toast Titanium for plenty of DVD video burning and for the most part it's been great. However, the last 20 or so DVD's i've tried to burn have all come out choppy when playing in my DVD player that's connected to my TV (not the MBP). By choppy I mean that it will play, and all the sudden it will pause, for maybe 1-2 seconds sometimes longer, and then it will start playing again. It gets pretty irritating. Both problems made me think that it was maybe a software conflict or something else weird. I thought maybe it was because I hadn't reformatted and reinstalled the operating system since I bought the computer (I know, it's a throwback to my PC days and an option of last resort). At any rate, I reformatted and started with a clean system, and I still have the same two problems. Any ideas what could be the cause of my problems? Is my hardware failing? Thanks for your help/suggestions ps. This computer also experiences the vertical striping issue that alot of people have been having with the new MBPs.