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Spontaneous restarts and failures to load of XP

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Hello and thank you to all who contribute to the knowledge base of this wonderful forum. This is my first post so please excuse any faux pas.
I have an XP sp3 machine with multiple user accounts which regularly restarts itself in the middle of sessions. Actually I think I can identify two issues:
1. From a fresh restart to the log on screen and into the most frequently used user account there are regular failures to finalise the log in process and it sometimes takes two or three goes to establish the session. I have noticed that often (but not always) the crash is predictable by reference to the fact that the systray bar starts up white and not blue as it should be. Once I have a white sys tray I know that there will be a restart.
2. Once a session is established and all of the start up programs have logged on the system will spontaneously restart itself with no warning at all. It seems to me on an unscientific basis that this tends to happen when starting IE (version 8) sessions or opening tabs but not always. I am running K9 in the background and judging by what a previous thread said in relation to CA Internet security I was wondering whether this might be an issue.
Thanks once again in anticipation of your assistance.
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