Several times in the past month or two, my computer would lock up for about 10 seconds. The screen would blink, and then I'd get an error popup that my graphics card/driver/something was no longer responding and rendering properly, so I've been switched to software rendering. Software rendering is quite slow.
Then, within the past half-week, my computer frequently just locks up entirely. Nothing works; can't even move the mouse. It doesn't recover at all. I just updated my video drivers last night (luckily finishing the process before the next lockup), and that didn't fix the problem.
There are two reasons I suspect this isn't software-related: One, this lockup once happened at the Windows login "select user" screen right after a reboot. I can't imagine any malware being able to screw things up there. And two, the error message described above. On the other hand, I'm currently running a Norton Ghost backup which (last I checked) hasn't locked up. Ghost works by rebooting into a barebones DOS session (with a graphical display, but not much of one) to do its thing.
So what do y'all think? Windows corruption? Malware? Bad video card? Bad mobo? Bad power supply? Cooling problems?
I run a small form factor desktop. My motherboard doesn't have onboard video. I run an AGP video card, but I have a PCI slot too. I'm running Win XP SP1.
Any help would be appreciated. (Please no "Get a Mac" type comments. I'm a bit too frustrated right now for jokes like that.) Thanks, y'all.