+ 0 Votes Possible you have a hardware failure, wizard57m-cnet Moderator January 24, 2013 at 12:52pm PST or perhaps loose memory chip, or some other component. If you are not comfortable in disassembling your computer, it may be advisable to seek technical help. Otherwise, you'll need to open the case, all cables, component cards, etc. to make sure each is making good connection. Clean the system from any dust, make sure the air vents are not blocked. Reassemble and try to boot. Did this start occurring suddenly, or have there been other symptoms showing up lately? + 0 Votes Reponse To Answer Robin Knows Nothing January 25, 2013 at 6:31am PST Sorry, you may have missed in my question that I am running Windows 7. Please see other replies for another option I have discovered + 1 Votes Also it's a good idea to try a Boot Disc like the OH Smeg Updated - January 24, 2013 at 4:08pm PST Ultimate Boot CD available free here to download and use www.ultimatebootcd.com/download.html Click on the ISO listing about half way down the page not the add that reads Download. Then when you have made the CD or if your system supports booting from USB Thumb Drives you can download the Thumb Drive Version and boot off it and test your hardware. Col + 0 Votes I agree, might be hardware Locrian_Lyric January 24, 2013 at 10:11pm PST If you can find someone with hardware dx tools, that would be a place to start, a Motherboard, cpu, or memory error could do it. + 0 Votes Where did you find the elusive "any key"? ITKimK January 24, 2013 at 10:44pm PST Sorry for the geek joke. Did you try pressing the F8 key after booting to boot into safe mode? Windows 7 offers a "Repair my computer" option on this menu which may help solve your problem. + 0 Votes Safe mode? BIOS Defaults? raid0 January 24, 2013 at 10:49pm PST Have you tried booting into safe mode? Immediately after the manufactuer logo disappears (Dell, HP, Gigabyte, etc) repeated press F8 until the safe mode option appears. Choose Safe Mode. If that doesn't work, perhaps try restoring the BIOS defaults and rebooting. Also, perhaps you aren't waiting long enough for the disk to load. On certain hardware, I've had Windows Vista and 7 setups take extremely long times to completely load. You will get a mouse on a black screen until fully loaded. + 1 Votes One answer--SPINRITE! from GRC! For 20+yrs, the BEST disk recovery tool! DavidTheConsultant January 24, 2013 at 10:54pm PST Just one answer--SPINRITE! from GRC! For over 20+ years it's been the BEST disk recovery tool ever! + 0 Votes Another option dldorrance January 24, 2013 at 11:15pm PST If you plan to continue using XP it may be wise to own a "retail copy"; the license allows you to install it on any computer but only one computer at a time. This software is available on eBay. If you go this route make sure you are purchasing a retail copy, not a disk with XP came when a computer was purchased, as it will only install on original computer.