I'm having a weird problem that I have never seen before, and no one I have talked to has ever heard of before.
I have a Thinkpad T30 with XP installed. It is a reasonably fresh install. Guaranteed no spyware or viruses, this machine has been checked within an inch of its life by a number of people and IT departments.
When the network cable is connected, programs that are running are perfectly fine, but when I click an icon to start a program, there is a 15-45 second pause before the program starts. While in this "pause", the desktop doesn't refresh and clicking the taskbar does nothing. When the pause is over, the programs starts, and all the clicks that were made during the pause happen at once. If I use alt-tab to switch between programs, I can do anything I want to an already open program during the pause.
If I disconnect the network cable, everything works perfectly fine. When I reconnect it, the pause happens on running a program.
Network traffic is zero. CPU during this is zero (other than any programs already running). I have run every single performance graph there is, and there is absolutely no bumps in anything measurable during this period. There is no increase in network traffic, memory, cpu usage, disk activity, nothing. There is absolutely nothing that I can find that the pc is doing during this pause.
I played with running programs at startup (using msconfig), and with everything disabled, it still happens. If I leave every process running, but stop the "workstation" service, then everything works perfectly. I, of course, need the workstation process but it seems to be the source of the problem. I suspect I have some sort of network misconfiguration.
Can anyone shed some light on things to check?