Over the past 6mths-year my computer has been having major difficulties. Initially when ever I tried to access programs and applications such as My Computer, My Briefcase, Internet Explorer etc. I get the "Explorer has caused an error in KERNEL32.DLL" error message. When I hit close the computer froze and had to be restared, upon which the same thing happened. On contacting Dell technical support I was informed I would have to reformat the hard drive, after which things were OK for a while.
After that every so often the message "explorer has caused an error in unknown and will now close" would appear at random, usually causing the program open at the time to close down. Eventually I could not access most of the programmes on the desktop and on contacting dell support I was told to reformat the hard drive. Recently my computer would not boot up completely, a blue screen would appear saying "windows protection error. You need to restart your computer. System halted." I contacted dell support and they tried various things which didnt work. They referred me to software support, a service for which there is a fee. Software support guided me through reformatting the hard drive once more. My computer is working normally again, with the odd message telling me that an error has been caused in some progragram or other which will now close. In the past this happens occasionally, with increasing frequency until something major happens. Yesterday the computer only booted partially where a blue screen appeared telling me that an error had occured. It rebooted in safe mode and when I booted again it was back to normal. This was probably a lucky escape. I notice that when I boot up now, when the desktop appears at first it is a blue screen with these black cross shaped patterns, which I did not set. They dissappear after a few seconds.I am obviously heading for more trouble and would like to know if anyone has any advice apart from reformatting my hard drive which is obviously only a temporary fix. I have a 18mnth old dimension 8100 running Win Me.
Every now and then I have run scandisk, disk defragment and disk cleanup, and system restore, all to no avail. I have consulted the Microsoft website but there is nothing of help there. I have carried out the suggestion of deleting the scan with Norton Antivirus option, but this has had no effect.