i dont know if my xp is with sp3, how can i find out
Go to your Windows Control Panel and click on the System icon which will open the System Properies window - look under the heading System: for the Service Pack (SP) number which will be any of 1, 2 or 3.
OK, we will uninstall and reinstall version 1.7.1 of XAMPP but we will use a different method to the Installer version as this installer has been known to give issues with XP.
You are logged into XP with administrator privileges and not simply a user?
First stop Apache and MySQL in the XAMPP Control Panel.
Next close the Control Panel.
Click on Start in the Task Bar then click on Run...
sc delete apache2.2
sc delete mysql
These will close very quickly but will do the job of removing any registry entries that may be sticking and giving us issues.
There may also be an XAMPP uninstaller that you can run now and before deleting the xampp folder.
Next delete the xampp folder completely.
Open the Task Manager by right clicking on the Task Bar and selecting Task Manager from the context menu.
Next click on the Processes tab and look for httpd.exe or apache.exe and mysqld.exe - if you find any of those files then click on them and then click on the End Process button, click Yes when asked the question.
If non of the files in the list then close the Task Manager.
Now download the EXE (7zip) self extracting version of XAMPP.
Double click on the file and select to extract to the C:\ drive and it will extract to C:\xampp and place all the files in their correct locations.
Next run setup_xampp.bat file in the xampp folder and it will set all the paths correctly for you.
Now open the xampp-control.exe file in the xampp folder and click on start Apache and MySQL.
You can create a shortcut to this file on your Desktop for easier use later.
You should now be able to go to http://localhost
and after selecting your language you will be able to test the installation by running the demos.
Please let me know back if you finally have it working.