XP home doesn't start first time

  User-9F8AF0A3-F852-43C6-8A7B55A65FE9307D 20:09 09 Dec 2009

When I boot up my PC, after displaying the 'checking memory' page, it will usually shut down & then restart successfully. Sometimes this loop runs 2 or 3 times. Occasionally the PC hangs & requires a manual restart. Once up & running performance seems fine - reasonably quick & stable. The problem has existed for a while & now it has become a nuisance. Do I need a new PC?
System is XP Home, 3Gb ram, HD 2/3 full, approx 6 yrs old.
Thanks for any help.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 20:24 09 Dec 2009

If it totaly stops the suspect PSU
if fans keep running and goes back to mem check then maybe slow hard drive.

EIther way make sure you have a bak up of all your important files and pictures.

As drives get older, they can take longer to get up to speed and become ready (available). This can then exceed the time it takes for the booting to look for the drive - so it doesn't find it.
The solution is often to make the initial part of the boot take longer, by disabling "Quick power on self test and/or making the system look for the floppy drive first by enabling "floppy seek".
Some BIOS even have a facility to put in a delay before the hard disk is checked.

  birdface 21:56 09 Dec 2009

Old computer have you checked that the air vents are not clogged up with dust and fluff if so inside will need a good clean as well.

Thanks guys. I already knew about the'fluff' thing so now I will try the solutions suggested by Fruit Bat.

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