i will be back in a few hours... have to eat dinner and run a ew errands.
thanks again for all your help.
PS: when i think of the last think i was doing before all this happened.... i was trying to install software for a mini print server. i do remember getting a weird little pop up window and assumed it was a part of the netgear software, but it didn't have a title bar on it. it kept going through a series of, what i thought to be tests to get the server to connect. i really don't remember what it said, now. but i managed to uninstall the software and drivers before the BSOD/reboot issue started. i wonder if that was the culprit.
but i will be happy to run some diagnostics per your instruction. i hope it's not a hardware issue. i would at first guess think not... the machine is about 7 months old and the ram was upgraded less than two months ago. i've never had any problems until tuesday, and like i said it all happened after the failed print server install.