Are CPUs really this fragile? Or do I just have a lot of bad luck with them?
I'm not completely sure if the CPU is dead, that's why I'm posting; in the hopes that somebody can confirm or offer another diagnosis...
I upgraded a system far enough that it needed a case fan to keep it cool. The case did not come with a fan and I didn't have a fan that fit it, so I modified the tower to hold it. After reassembling the system, it appeared to work just fine except for some rather loud vibration. I looked through the system and it appeared to be the fan on the CPU's heatsink (a light touch made it quit vibrating). I removed the fan and heatsink and put some larger screws in it to hold it tight. I put the heatsink back in the system and turned it back on. The vibration was gone, but now I have intermittent (pretty much random) lockups.
Occasionally, it locks up during POST. Usually, it locks up during OS boot. Thinking it might be the OS, I used a boot CD. I had the same results using the CD as letting it boot from the HDD. Every once in a while, it would make it all the way through bootup, but it [italic]always[/italic] locked up eventually. Now, it won't do anything at all.
Changing memory did not help.
Same results after disconnecting every drive (individually or all at once).
I haven't tried removing the modem, audio or video cards, but I suspect that they won't help.