hmmmm... seems to be alot of comments that agree with, what I thought, was my misfortune. After installing Steam, upon it's initial release, I have been able to play Half-Life and all of it's various mods a total of zero times. I am extreamly disappointed in Valve for releasing Steam in such a condition. I spend large sums of money keeping my hardware up to date and spend more time than I have to keep my software up to date and running smoothly. I also lay down serious cash every month for a T1 line, all to enhance my gaming experince. I was a large supporter of Valve and their software until Steam.
The other night, after reinstalling Steam twice (thinking I had done something wrong) and calling my ISP (wanting to know why I was having problems with my T1), I finally came to the conclusion that Steam was the problem. I voiced my disappointment in Valve, which my wife overheard. She asked why I was upset. I exclaimed, "It's this Steam engine, it's slow as hell." Ignorantly she replied, "Well, arn't they?". I smiled. Sixty seconds later I uninstalled Steam.
Valve, I'm sure HL2 will make up for all this, but you should have known better...