When I power up my PC and Windows XP tries to load, I get the following message: "We apologize for the inconvenience, but Windows did not start successfully. A recent hardware or software change might have caused this."

There are a few old threads on here with suggestions to deal with this problem by starting in Safe mode etc., however at the options screen I am unable to make any selection (i.e. the up and down cursor keys for some reason do not function) and the 'Start Windows normally' option is therefore automatically run.

This option obviously places the PC into a continual loop of trying to start up then defaulting to the error message screen, then running in 'Start Windows normally', then booting the error message....etc.

Please help.

Thank you in advance,

Richard.

First of all you can scan for virus as a precaution. Did you install any software or hardware that may have cause this to happen? It seem that your Window maybe corrupted and may need to reinstall again.

try booting to your winxp cd and go recovery console and run a check disk ,
at the command prompt type in with out the "",and a space between the k and /
"chkdsk /r"

Try to put your hard disk in other system unit and run check disk.