Pentium 4, 2.41 GHz
512 MB of RAM
80 GB Hard Drive
Windows XP Pro w/ Service Pack 2
Recently, my computer has begun to randomly lock up. When it locks up, the mouse stops moving, using the keyboard produces no response, and the only way to get it to work again is by using the restart button (CTRL + ALT + DEL doesn't even work). It's hard for me to try to reproduce the lock up since I have no idea what is causing it; it just occurs randomly. My computer turns off the monitor after an hour, and I often find it stuck like this in the morning. Lately (namely tonight), I've noticed it likes to lock up a lot about five to ten minutes after opening Trillian. However, it has also locked up when Trillian is not even in use, such as overnight when the computer is basically idle. Trillian was on my computer when it was at college, so I doubt Trillian is causing it, especially since the computer locks up even when Trillian is closed.
In March of 2005, I had some sort of bug on my computer and ended up having to format the HD, but luckily I was able to save all of my files. After reinstalling everything, it worked great. My computer is a desktop PC, so the moving process to and from college requires me to unplug everything and take it home, then plug it all back together. My computer has started this random restart thing ever since I brought it back home. The only thing I've done to it since bringing it home is installing a game, Need For Speed Underground 2. I had this game on the PC before I formatted the drive in March and it worked fine, and my computer should not be locking up randomly because of NFSU2 if the game isn't even running. In fact, I could play NFSU2 for hours and the computer would never lock up. As I mentioned earlier, it seems to only lock up in Windows when basically idle...
I've been checking my voltage and temperature statistics, and everything seems to be normal. My case/mainboard is running around 28-30 degrees celsius, and the CPU runs about 38 degrees celsius when idle, 48-50 when playing a game or doing something fairly taxing on the system. I also ran a check on the hard drive for errors, defragged the drive, and scanned for viruses; no errors on the drive, no viruses, and the defragging didn't help it.
I think I'm going to look in the case tomorrow to make sure nothing is unplugged. It's strange that my computer seemed to lock up whenever I opened Trillian, but for the most part it's been pretty random. I'll try opening up Trillian to see what it does after I post this.
Basically, if anyone has any ideas why this is happening, I'd love to hear them so I can try to fix this. I'm all out of ideas, and it's confusing me even more by being random sometimes, NEVER locking up when playing a game (even for hours), and sometimes seeming like it's related to a program.