For weeks my computer has had an unknown issue. Finally, a friend who is exceptionally computer savvy, helped attempt a diagnosis. We didn't learn much but the computer is certainly on the way out. I just built this machine about two years ago and I can't believe that it didn't last a little bit longer than it has. It just randomly shuts down in the middle of tasks, even under a light work load. He thought that perhaps the dust build up on the heat sink was the issue or the slightly loose heat sink on the cpu was the root problem but we repaired both, replaced the thermal grease. Still no go. We took the video card apart and blew the dust out of all the other components as well. Nothing seemed to have an effect.
So, long story short, in the coming weeks it looks like I get to buy a new computer. Usually this would be cause for celebration except that we were already picking up a new one so that we could have one dedicated to the media center in the living room. That is right out the window. There are worse problems to have in life, but this is, none the less, extremely annoying. I am still hoping for an epiphany as the root issue so I can replace a component instead of the whole unit but the outlook is grim.
The timing is the real issue though. I have so much to do over the next few weeks that I really didn't need one more thing to worry about.
Update 1: Well, he ran a test on the memory and there were no errors found. He used a Ubuntu disk that way all the memory would be available for the test. I had my fingers crossed as this would have been the cheapest fix. We are on to more complex things now I guess. Bummer. Hopefully we find the issue.