Hi everyone, I've been having some strange activity with my laptop the past few days and came here with the hopes of figuring out what's wrong to hopefully fix it. Let me try to give you a brief rundown of the problems that started popping up as I realized something must be messed up:
-Two days ago everything seemed to be working fine on my computer, no issues. However, when I navigated to My Computer and then tried to access an external harddrive, E: I believe, nothing would happen no matter how many times I double-clicked on the drive icon - Windows Explorer wouldn't change directly but also wouldn't freeze. I tried many times and found this odd.
-However, I then noticed that if I simply typed E:\ into my address bar at the top of the Explorer window, I could navigate to and browse the files on my external harddrive with no issues. I copied an AVI file from my external and then attempted to paste it into My Documents. About halfway through the file transfer, my computer locked up hard and nothing I did could help, so I simply shut it down.
-When I tried to boot back up, my computer showed the first two BIOS screens I usually see, then when the WinXP Pro loading screen USUALLY appears, I got a black screen with a white underscore cursor blinking - but I couldn't type anything, move the cursor, or do anything. I couldn't boot into Windows at all. I assumed some kind of important files were corrupt and used my Windows CD to perform a repair installation, after this was complete I could get into Windows no problem.
-Since the repair install everything seems to be working decently, however now I run into my current issue, which is somewhat similar to when I couldn't double-click to access my external harddrive before. All my programs run fine, I can access the internet fine, no real problems - except when I try to open any kind of Windows Explorer window. If I double click My Computer or My Documents from the desktop, my computer will hang for a few seconds, and then I recieve an error message that Explorer.exe must close - here is a screenshot: http://i32.tinypic.com/1q69vk.jpg .
All .exe's load and run fine but like I said, any attempt to open a Windows Explorer window and I start running into problems. Usually it is Explorer.exe that crashes but sometimes I get the error message for LSASS.exe and Taskmgr.exe. I thought perhaps checking if I need any updates thru Windows that might fix my issue, but whenever I try to open Windows Update, I recieve this error: http://i25.tinypic.com/90vz9c.jpg .
Last night I downloaded a copy of SP3 for WinXP and tried installing it. Finally I got it to install successfully while running my computer in Safe Mode. However, after the successful install it asked me to restart - so I did. The next time my computer booted it loaded a different WinXP loading screen, a smaller one that read "Please wait..." on the bottom instead of my usual loading screen. It ended up hanging on this screen all night and this morning I had to hard power-down the system to start it back up. Loaded the old loading screen, got into Windows fine, supposedly SP3 is installed but I have the same Explorer issues.
Does anyone have any ideas on where I should start or what this could possibly be? Thanks very much in advance.