I see XP do that years later if there is a printer or file share that is off line. I've yet to see a patch to cure that so disconnect from all printer and file shares and tell more.
Hey. Pardon my not knowing what is going on, and having to describe things in vague metaphors. I have an aging WinXP Pro SP3 system, Dell Inspiron E1505. It seems to be having "seizures" every 5 minutes or so, where all activity will grind to a near halt. This will last 2-3 minutes, and then slowly things return to normal, only to repeat again in a regular period. This seems to be happening no matter what I'm doing -- but especially when I'm doing something intensive, like major file operations (I was comparing some directories the other night and it was bad) or playing a game.