Can you give the full and litteral text of the error messages. I really doubt if they are "6 Mb of system 32 did not defrag" and "system 32 config system failure" or "windows 32 error".
There's no reason why the common recovery procedures won't work, at least not because of embedded passwords and such. But it's not clear to me at the moment what the common recovery procedures would be.
On the face of it, I'm suspecting the hard disk, especially given the age of the machine. The idea with hard disks giving trouble is to replace them. But, indeed, a chkdsk with surface check is a good idea to start with. You can run it from the recovery console, as shown in http://support.microsoft.com/kb/314058
Best of luck,
After running a defragmentation, I received a message that 6 mb of system 32 did not defrag. the system ran, closed, then when booted up the next day I received the windows 32 error. I have an OEM windows xp installed in the computer, a pentium III gateway, and i understand that common recovery proceedures cannot be used with success, because the OEM versions have embedded passwords and such. I have not heard strange sounds from my hard drive, previous to , and subsiquent to the problem. I wish to run chkdsk,to see if this can resolve the problem, if the OEM version will allow it. Is this possible, and the fact that I have a D drive slaved to the c drive matter?
Do I have any options? Please advise, am at my wits end, and do not wish to destroy what is left of my operating system.. I have made bo attempts as yet.