I figured out what I was doing wrong in not getting the dvd to run.
(the dvd contains a couple of directories and a file "bootmgr"
press any key to boot from dvd
windows is loading files
then:" toshiba recovery wizard
selected: system recovery options
restore using a system image that you created (but I don't think my recovery disk uses an image)
windows cannot find a system image on this computer
cancelling out of that brought me to a "system recovery options" screen
what i want to do is restore back to where the laptop was when I made the restore disk (after buying the laptop and removing software I didn't want and adding a couple that I did)
I'm willing to do the work to research this (which I've been doing for the last couple of days) but I'm running out of time. Maybe I am going about this the wrong way? any suggestions or insights are welcome. my laptop is so slow as to be unusable, but windows does come up. I have xp install disks. but my understanding is the system restore will keep the programs and settings that i had when created the disk, i don't want to lose these or win 7. Please help.