At least when I restarted after installing mouseware the system still was able to find win.com.
I have posted the win.com problem to the tech support guy forum. I also posted the mouse problem - it still has a way of stalling for no reason that I can figure. And, just for good measure, I posted my CD drive problem (not able to find those drives - checked plugs, replugged into motherboard...).
If I wanted to be a techie I might be in heaven now. So many opportunities to practice! And I am certain that I will emerge from this whole thing stronger!! Certain of it!! Sure!! On the other hand, the idea of taking this whole mess to a repair shop is getting more and more tempting. To a GOOD shop, that is (I've been to the other kind, which employs people who are worse at this stuff than I am).
At least, at least, I have windows, to a degree, and the mouse works, more or less. I am afraid to get into anything too complicated, though, just yet, to use any big messy programs, like adobe photoshop.