run - msconfig [type it into the command line and press enter] - go to the top right tab [startup] and in the drop down list you will see a lot of progs that could run at startup. click in the box to take the tick out of everything other than your virus checker and firewall if you have one. Also leave the tick in any other prog you want to run at startup. Restart and see if this sorts it out. My experience is that Norton often seems to give this form of trouble with xp. Once you have it started put a tick in the warning box that comes up on starting to warn you that you are fiddling with the startup.