XP not booting completely; restored, booted, but very choppy performance

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Zhuria

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Jun 30, 2008
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This was my original post in hardware (I felt sure it was hardware related)

I'm running Windows XP on a custom built machine. I was about to put a CD in my open drive when I was called out of the room and stupidly walked into the tray. It came off the rails. I opened the case, removed the CD-rom, opened it up, fixed the tray, put it back in, and dusted the case while I was in there since it was due. Plugged everything back in, the tray opens and closes beautifully, but XP won't load all the way.

It gets to the desktop, but before any icons or programs load. The screen looks like this: I can see my desktop background and the task bar along with the start button. The quick bar area is blank and I can see through it to the background. The mouse is normal when on the upper part of the screen, but when over the task bar is an hourglass. I can't do anything else aside from move the mouse. No three finger salute, no clicking on anything.
It was suggested I a) check to see if the CD-rom was actually reading disks in safe mode (it works fine), so I did a system restore to two days ago.

It worked somewhat. It got further in the boot (I was able to ctrl+alt+del) and then hung. I started stopping nonessential programs to see if anything helped, when I stopped rstrui.exe Windows booted all the way. Then I realized that was the Restore program, so maybe I screwed something up. It booted but is still really, really effed up. It's slow as heck and just not working like it usually does.

I'm not sure what to do. Or even where to put this. It could be a problem with XP or it could very well be some kind of virus (I'm running AVG in safe mode right now, typing this on my crappy Dell laptop). Basically just looking for someone to walk me through troubleshooting it.

Thanks in advance; any help greatly appreciated as it's my work computer.
 
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