This problem began occuring recently, and as such I am assuming it has to do with either windows updates, or an alternately running program or process. Windows XP home has been reseting while im using old applications, windowed dos, or win32 applications, unexpectedly. I set windows to not reset on critical errors so now it just hangs. No mouse movement, unresponsive to ctrl+alt+del or alt+tab. The event viewer displays no errors during this time period, and i have been getting no "windows was improperly shut down" errors on startup. This has occasionaly occured in the past whilst running xp applications, but only very rarely, and as such may have been an unrelated error. Note that this does not occur during all old applications, also that I attempted to run under a restricted profile unsuccessfuly to see if the problem would occur with none of my personal background apps running, apperantly windows will not allow any of the applications to run without admin privelieges. When these specific applications are run on my other computers they have no problems. Also worth noting that i have recently had a huge virus infection, at the same time as an external hd failure, though the only way i can see this affecting this issue is that i am running different antivirus software now (avg instead of windows defender). Ill be running disk cleanup and defrag overnight to see if that helps at all, and maybe some registry cleaners. I hope someone can help, i dont know where to even begin looking for the problem here.