Understanding order of precedence with JREs

I’m trying to understand why a copy of “javaw.exe” keeps crashing on my Windows XP system. I know it has something to do with the various versions of Java being ran on my computer. Might also have something to do with a VM I’m using with Java stuff, too…

Anyway, I’m going through the list of things to try to eliminate this annoying problem and right now, I’m trying to disable certain versions of Java I have running to see if a specific version could be the culprit.

What happens is this: I’ll go to the Control Panel, double-click on the Java icon, and when the Java Control Panel comes up, “javaw.exe” immediately crashes. I can still poke around with the panel if I don’t click the “Don’t Send” button o the error window but in any event, it’s telling me that something pertaining to Java needs to be reinstalled. What a pain!

Anyone around here have any idea about this error? Also, when inside the Java Control Panel on the Java tab, how much control does someone really have when they uncheck one of the installed Java versions found inside the “View…” window? I currently have about 3 different versions installed and all of them are checked. Does this imply that the most up-to-date version is ALWAYS ran first followed by the older versions or does this instead mean that ONLY the newest version is ran alone?

Any insight into this is appreciated and would go a long way for me.