Itunes won't open, spotlight disappeared & no sound from QT

Hi there,
I was browsing the web using Safari 3.0.3 and listening to music using itunes. Safari froze for some reason, this then seemed to affect play back in itunes. I waited for a while then looked at Force Quit, Safari was not responding, so I closed that. itunes then would not respond (although it was not highlighted red in force quit), I then had the menu come up telling me I had to shutdown using the power button.
Once I had restarted my PB; itunes would not start, it just hops in the dock once then nothing; Quicktime opens but there is no audio output; there is no audio for streamed media on Safari or Firefox and I have lost spotlight and all the other icons at the top right of the menu bar, bluetooth, date & time etc.
Audio hardware is ok, I can still get playback from Logic Pro. I have tried repairing permissions. Apart from that I'm at a loss, this is the first major issue I've had with my mac in three years, I've never had to learn how to trouble shoot it!
My partner recently installed skype and had one or two audio problems (Incidentally, I tried opening itunes in her login, same problems all round). Also I have installed some third party DivX components for quicktime in the last couple of weeks, could either of those be an issue?
I'm gearing up for an OSX re-install, I'd REALLY like to avoid that if possible. Can you repair OSX using the installation disks? Is there some preference file I can change/delete, or something else in the system folder/library that would fix my problems?
Thanks, any help really appreciated.

hi Greg!
let's first try to get your itunes running again.
are you running Norton Internet Security 2005? if so, first try the "Lorraine" technique:
Lorraine M, "NIS/i-tunes problem rectified" #2, 12:51am Oct 17, 2005 CDT
if you're not running NIS 2005, try:
http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=302386
keep us posted.
love, b

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