XML parsing and various problems

Okay, first of all… I’d like to say I’ve only taught myself how to do this a couple of days ago, and I’ve got it all up and running mostly, but now I’ve hit a brick wall.

Basically, I’ve built a map of sorts in flash, where all of the objects are loaded according to the contents of an XML file.

Basically the XML file is read, and the items inside it have the coordinates where the shape is meant to be, it;s title and its description.

This all works fine, despite the XML file being almost 1000 lines long.

My current problem is trying to write code to select and modify one of these generated movieclips after the XML has been initially loaded and parsed.

function Searchitems(rsearch) {
    var items = items_xml.firstChild.childNodes;
    i = 0;
    while (i<=items) {

That’s basically what I have right now to do the search, from what I can tell it should work… currently 've got a temporary trace() in place to try and see what’s wrong, but when it’s working that will be replaced by code to modify the movieclip instead.
When this function is called, the program freezes and stops responding… in past experience it hasn’t done this and I’m wondering whether there is something obviously wrong with the code, or whether it’s because my XML file is so huge, or whether it’s because the trace will produce about 112 values, or whether vista is a pile of crap.

As far as I can tell, it should get the var items to be 112, i = 0 initially… and then it should perform the trace() and increase i by 1 until it reaches 112, at which point the function should end.

Any help would be appreciated… for further info I’m currently using Flash CS3 but it’s a flash 8 file.