Userinit.exe: The application failed to initiate properly

I keep getting this message after rebooting the XP machine.  After viewing these messages, I get prompted for my username/password; however, it seems as though I'm in an NT environment from what the colors show.  When it finally logs in, all the desktop settings and everything else, my settings, are missing.  

The only way to get back into my previous settings is to reboot the machine and hold down the F12 at startup which prompts me for the bootup utility which I then select the LAST KNOW GOOD CONFIGURATION setting and this allows me to go back into my PC the way I used to be able to do.

I'm presently running a Virus scan on the C:drive and doing a live update on Symantec.

After login into my account and viewing the desktop, I get a Symantec message stating to verify the license, but It seems as though I'm up to date.

Any ideas on how to resolve?
OCwaste2Asked:
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johnb6767Connect With a Mentor Commented:
"HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon"

Make sure that nothing is jacking with the SHELL value, which should be Explorer.exe
Also, make sure that the UserInit value is "C:\windows\system32\userinit.exe,"

Userinit.exe is about 24-26kb, in the System32 folder, and should be signed by MS.

Explorer.exe should be about 1008-1014kb and siogned by MS, in the Windows Directory....

Also check to see if a subkey exists under here called....

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Image File Execution Options\explorer.exe

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Image File Execution Options\userinit.exe
and
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Paths\explorer.exe
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Paths\userinit.exe

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HRLCommented:
try running Hijackthis and allow it to fix the errors.
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johnb6767Commented:
Which part of the post helped you out?

Regardless, glad you are fixed.....
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