PC randomly hangs with grey screen

  bumbleweasle 14:05 31 Aug 06

Hello! Aside from recently becoming sluggish (possibly due to a lapse in maintenance on my part), my computer has started to randomly drop its display. By this, I mean that the screen suddenly shows nothing but a large grey box with a thick black margin around it. There is a slight distortion in the line between the box & the margin. At first, I thought it was maybe my monitor giving up the ghost as it occasionally has colour issues & sometimes emits a high-pitched whistling sound. I noticed however that keyboard commands to shut the PC down do not work, and I always have to hit the reset button. Things are always fine after a reboot.
Also, I don't know if it is related, but I seem to be getting some kind of strange audio distorion as well. Whilst playing sounds, the speakers crackle every time the CPU light comes on, & if the machine is heavily taxed, the sound comes out slow and/or otherwise distorted with nasty electrical buzz type noises.
This week, having realised I hadn't done any maintenance for a while, I have cleaned out, defragged & virus/spyware checked my PC a few times. I still cannot figure out why A) the system is taxed so much, or B) why the above problems occur.
Any ideas?

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