Seems like the indexing service is turned on. I encounter this issue when helping others with Windows XP. It is one of the biggest performance issues with Windows XP!
Right click on My Computer and click Manage.
Expand the Services and Applications, then click Services.
Make your way down to Indexing Service -- Double click to bring up the Properties window, and click Stop to let Windows stop the service. Then from the Status type drop down box select Disabled.
Hey, thanks for the quick reply.
I checked that and it was already stopped but set to manual. I now set it to disabled. Here's a bit more info on exactly what went down
Before the reformatting, the laptop overheated and shut itself down. The problem started happening soon after this (not immediately though). When it first started happening, I installed the latest video drivers and that solved the problem for about a day. After that, the problem came backand persisted from then on. I reformatted the computer and now the problem is still there. I'm trying to think of any other info I could had but I'm not sure what you guys need.