I've got a Dell Insperion 6000 that has always started up a bit slowly. Recently it became worse so I ran a number of spyware/optimization programs (PC Tools; AVG; CCleaner and others).
After starting up the computer will sometimes just sit there showing the hourgalss when the cursor is brought to the toolbar at the bottom of the screen and then just the cursor when brought above this - during this time the indicator light shows the HD is working. Sometimes it just sits there doing this and will take no other commands.
Sometimes it goes through the boot process and actually begins working; then for no reason locks up, again with the HD indicator light on.
I've disabled much of the "start up" stuff; and run a lot of diagnostics including Hijak This; I'm writing this from my office computer but will be home in a couple of hours (I live in Houston and the city is shutting down in honor of Ike). If posting the Hijak This log will be of help let me know and I'll do it ASAP.
Any other suggestions are appreciated.