I purchased a used computer not long ago and have installed Mint 16 on it. I barely had it set up and was using a couple programs when it froze. The problem is re-occurring and I haven't identified any causes yet.
I've tried reinstalling a couple times with no change in the problem. I have run tests on the RAM and SSD but no errors were found. I thought it might be firefox related but the problem continued after switching to chrome. Even with a fresh installation and no other programs being opened except firefox I haven't been able to use the computer for more than a few hours between freezes.
The freeze sometimes comes on instantly but other times it seems progressive. Sometimes firefox will lock up but I can still switch between windows using the mouse and menu bar. Clicking any of the icons on the menu bar has no effect. Sometimes the "menu" menu will open but again there is no effect when I click any of the suggestions. Eventually the application I'm using will disappear (sometimes before but also after the menu) and I'll see my desktop. Sometimes the icons are on the desktop and sometimes it's just the background initially and the icons disappear a short bit after. The more I click on things and try to use the computer the faster it progresses into a paperweight.
I was going to test windows on the computer but I only have XP and this computer won't run anything before Vista.
The motherboard has on-board audio and ethernet. The only expansion card is the graphics adapter and the only drives are a SATA optical drive and SATA SSD. I tried switching SATA cables on the hard drive but it had no effect. The system was thoroughly dusted and the temperature display hasn't been anywhere near the CPU's max core temp of 80 degrees Celsius.
This is pretty frustrating since I just got the computer and can't return it since I've had it open to clean it, and also reformatted it. What else can I try?