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I have a Sony Vaio in which I'm dual booting XP and Mint on. XP is painfully slow, and Mint likes to lock up randomly, to the point I have to power off to unfreeze it.

The Windows issue is fixed by one thing. Wiping and re-installing. Though I'd rather just have Linux on it as it's faster, but I need to ensure it's going to be more stable than it is now.

Any advice on the Mint issue?

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When Mint Linux locks up, you determine what caused the error:

Try pressing Ctrl+Alt+F1. If something shows up, it's "just" an X error (related to usermode video drivers) or a locked-up system. If that doesn't work, try holding Alt+PrtScr and then (while holding these keys) in order REISUB. If that makes the system reboot, the problem can be fixed in principle in software.

However, since the error occurs both on Windows and Linux, it's highly likely that defective hardware is the problem. After all, your laptop might simply overheeat. Try cleaning its fan.

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Okay, so CTRL ALT F1 does what it's supposed to, it goes to the command prompt, and CTRL ALT F7 brings it out like normal. ALT PRTSCRN + REISUB does in fact make it reboot. Windows doesn't lock up, it's just slower. What software might help on Mint? – Joseph Aug 30 '11 at 18:45
@Joseph Greenbaum If Ctrl+Alt+F1 Ctrl+Alt+F7 does fix your problem, it's almost certainly graphics-related. As I said, the most likely source is overheating, so make sure your graphics card's fan is clear of any obstructions. – phihag Aug 30 '11 at 19:06

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