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You problem is most likely caused by faulty capacitors on the motherboard. Most PCs of your age suffered from this. It was a manufacturing defect. Call Dell to see if they will replace it for free. This is a picture of two blown caps so you can id them on your MB
Download a "stress" testing programme called Prime95 and read instructions / run it through. I assume that ALL the ram matches perfectly. If this tester crashes PC alot, remove one ram stick at a time, may actually narrow the offender down. Also bear in mind that a programme could also be crashing PC so try using control Alt Del and go into "processes" and shut down ONE at a time / retest. This will take time but will narrow down the offender. You actually only need to run Prime 95 for a short time.....till it crashes PC. Eventually once you have stability the PC should run with no probs overnight!!
Heat sink sounds like a very good next step. I would thoroughly dust out the machine with canned or compressed air ( if you used a vaccuum already it may have cooked something with static discharge). After that you can order some thermal paste from Tigerdirect.com or pick some up at your local computer store (dont cheap out on it $5-$10 will get you 1-2 tubes of reasonable quality, and it does not go bad).
Remove the heat sink carefully, remove the chip from the cradle and inspect it to be sure it is not burnt or damaged. Clean the chip and the heat sink of all residue of the former thermal compound. Reinstall the chip. Then apply a spot of thermal paste/compound about half the size of a dime in the center of the chip. Reapply the heatsink, make sure everything is snug tight and secure and give it a try.
If it still dosent work there is more I can do to help. I am A+ cert and have passed all Dell factory tests, as well as working on many of these machines in a corporate environment.
If you require further assistance please let me know, I CAN solve this problem.
Hi - follow the link below and download the adi integrated driver. If this solves your peoblem PLEASE rate this as fixed. If you need more help just add a comment and I'll be happy to assist you further. Thanks.
If you're not running Win XP let me know.