Explorer.exe? and other issues
First I want to make sure everyone knows I'm not stupid, and I'm considerably experienced with computers.
Over the last month, Windows XP SP2 has been acting strange and crashing in a specific way every time. First, I may have 3 or more windows open and after 30 minutes or more of doing stuff, I switch between one of the windows and it freezes. Bring up task manager (5 second delay) and end whatever froze, generally one of the internet browsers (I have several and this happens to all) or an explorer window. Once the frozen app is ended, if I even look at the start bar explorer freezes (not recently with a different visual style). Task manager has a 10 second delay if I closed it. I end explorer, but windows still wants to crash. Event log at this time shows that the longer I delay in restarting my computer, the more services there are that terminate unexpectedly (record 20). If I interact with any program that has not died yet, it will die in 10 or so seconds. If I manage to save the computer, it won't let me start a new process. Not explorers fault, it's dead right now. I can't start any executable at this time, nothing happens but it simply shows as a process and eats the entire cpu. The log shows a few DCOM errors, TCPIP overflow, but the only thing I think that is relevant is the huge number of nview_info errors. All generally focus on a missing registry or dll file, but the errors are different each time.
A probable cause is one of the reg cleaners I ran may have erased some important info for nvidia, but I do not get any errors outside the log or experience any malfunctions from nview. Another probable cause is all the utillities I have. Diskeeper, Kerio Personal Firewall, Nod32, Eraser (sourceforge.net/projects/eraser), Ad Watch. The crash is more severe and does not wait for a bunch of windows to be open if I have all of my programs running at the same time, and I have many, including applets for my G15 keyboard, setpoint, taskswitchXp, deskloops (got this after problems, not before), eMule (this also seems to speed up the crash)
EDIT - A few other issues I forgot to mention; svchost (windows update) eats all of the cpu at startup, and none of the updates install successfully (mostly MS office stuff, 1 IE7, 1 windows security update). Some services marked as automatic forget to start up (windows audio, HID Input, etc.)
I have plenty of remaining space on my hard drive, 2.2 Ghz Amd +3700 processor, 2 Gigs of ram and Nvidia Geforce 7800 GT. No viruses at all, although I did have a few before that I killed.