cpu usage is running at 70-100% with 72 Processes running and the computer is very slow. There is only 23% free space on my C drive which I am sure is having some effect but is there anything else I can do to speed things up? I defrag, use disc clean up and run anti virus virtually every day.
Do you have an exact model number for it. Also how much RAM is there installed it looks like the max it came with was 1024MB upgrading to 2 gigs of memory will most likely help your performance issues the most.
Your laptop can hold up to 4G of RAM, even though the Compaq Support site may not say as much. I know this because I have a Presario V3000 (Model 3020US) and I've put 4G of Kingston HyperX RAM in it (CAS latency 3, really good stuff and very fast). Also you may look into upgrading your CPU. I dropped an AMD Turion X2 TL-64 (2.2Ghz dual core) in mine today and the difference is impressive. Actually, you could probably install a TL-68 (2.4Ghz dual core) but those run about $130 more than the TL-64's (I bought mine on ebay for $27). These laptops came standard with low capacity 5400RPM hard drives, so you may look into just a 2.5 SATAII 7200RPM hard drive, I would say that is where my biggest performance gain came from. Or if you want even more umph, try a solid state hybrid hard drive, like the Seagate Momentus XT models. The pros: They are much cheaper than fully solid state drives, and have higher capacity, plus the chance is that you wouldn't see much of a performance increase by installing a fully solid state hard drive anyway because it would be bottlenecked by your CPU and RAM. However keep in mind that if you want to game on your V3000 these upgrades will not do much for you there. The lackluster integrated Nvidia graphics are really a party pooper on the V3000 series...
My advice, try the CPU upgrade first and if that doesn't get you what you want try RAM next and then a new hard drive. However das_stig is right, 72 processes is pretty high. Try running a virus scan (I personally recommend Comodo Antivirus) and closing applications you may not need that are running in the taskbar tray. You can build yourself a pretty powerful rig for cheap if you put the time into it. Good luck.