After a couple of weeks of unpredictable computer crashes and a complete re-install of all software, I finally hit upon the solution. While there was a boot disc error message which recurred, I had never suspected the solid state c-drive (SSD) because I had told myself that they have no moving parts so should last a very long time. However, Mike and Paul informed me that these drives do indeed fail and that could be the issue. I did a search for indicators of SSD failure and found someone who described the exact problem I was having, that the programs would freeze but would allow you to move the mouse for a couple minutes before the computer crashed. He suspected SSD failure but others in the forum were trying to say it was a video card issue (I've had video card problems and this is nothing like them). Then someone else piped in suggesting that it is a firmware issue with the SSD. The person on the forum claimed this fixed his computer and so I searched out updates on the manufacture's site and voila! It has not crashed in over a day! Thanks everyone.
|successfully updating firmware of Micro solid state drive fixed the crashing problem|