I ended up re-installing Toast, trashed the preference files - again - Re-formulated the preferences, but it did stall - a bit further in the process, and I gave up. Just before going to bed I had a heart to heart conversation with the computer about its attitude and asked him if he wanted to find its name on eBay? In NO uncertain term I told it it was grounded until further notice. First thing this morning, in the Converted Items, before starting from the place where it stalled, I threw in the thrash the temp files because I noticed last night Toast rewrote those anyhow. I tweaked a bit the preferences, that's all I did and this time it encoded all the way to the finish line. I still do not know what really happened. It will be interesting to find out what will happen the next time around! Thank you again T.