Okay, that is a start at least.
Could you post the entire log of the Control Panel after you start it to give me a little more context as to your environment.
Also, could you open a command prompt (Start > Run > cmd), go to the /xampp directory, run the apache_start.bat and post any errors it spits out.
To answer your other question, yes, http://localhost
should redirect to the XAMPP start page if everything is working correctly.