For the longest time, my laptop, a Dell XPS L502X, has had a problem where it would crash suddenly while playing some games. The crashes don't result in a blue screen or an error message, they simply cause the screen to lock up and the sound to jam up, becoming a long series of loud buzzing noises. At first, the crashes happened so rarely and on so few games that I just assumed they were the result of something else crashing in the background and gumming up the works. Now, however, they happen within 45 minutes of playing the majority of games, and I cannot, for the life of me, figure out what's causing them.
My graphics card is a GeForce GT 540M with an Intel HD Graphics 3000 I'm running 64-bit Windows 7, and have 6 GB of RAM. So far, I've tried rolling back the drivers, wiping and re-installing older drivers from when things worked better, selectively installing only the graphics card drivers and excluding Nvidia's bloat, changing system settings in the Nvidia menu to games specifically use the dedicated GPU, and I've run stress tests. Not a single thing has even given me a clue as to what the problem is, let alone fixed it. About the only thing that allowed me any insight into the situation was running League of Legends (a game which worked without issue a year ago) in windowed mode. When the game experienced its inevitable crash, it actually recovered once or twice, informing me via an error message that the Nvidia kernel mode driver had crashed and recovered.
I'm at wit's end here, and I'd deeply appreciate any help in figuring out what is going wrong here.