1. Do you have your CD/DVD drive configured in the BIOS as the FIRST boot device?
2. If so, did you hit enter when the start screen asked you to boot from the CD?
3. Do you have more than one CD drive you could try as an alternative?
4. Have you tried from a COLD start (as against a re-boot)?
Your CD should boot irrespective of any other concern and if it wont, you have problems with the hardware, rather than software, which could also explain the "freezes" you mentioned.