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Location: Somewhere inside 9.9 million sq. km. Canada
Distribution: Slackware 14.1, 14.2
This kind of problem can be caused by hardware problems, such as over heating. I would suggest you get a live distro, and run it for a while. If there are no problems, then you probably have a software problem. If it does freeze, then you know its hardware related.
Run memtest, it available for most distros. Look for some way to display the temperature
of your CPU(s). Some systems can do it in BIOS, and there are tools you can install in software to monitor the heat.
When was the last time you had the covers off to clean the fans and heat sink?
I was able to get memtest86 working from Hiren's Boot CD. Ran it for 12 hours with no errors. I guess in the AM, I'm going to crack the case and reseat the memory. CPU as well, if it's not soldered on.
Most of the hard freezes I've had were X locking up. Although not really frozen as you could ssh into the machine and kill X to recover. Assuming that you're running an ssh server and have another machine on the same network.
You could monitor your system if the crash is predictable. RAM usage, temperatures and such. There might already be helpful log entries in the /var/log/ files. If there is you might have a terminal open running "tail -f /var/log/syslog" and another running "tail -f /var/log/dmesg", which might provide on screen insight when the system does it again. Unless it is a hardware issue.
...which is a laptop so hardware wise it's likely to be an overheating issue as camorri has indicated above. This is caused by dust and fluff blocking the fins of the heat exchanger, you may be able to clear this using an air can spray but if you've already decided to open the case and dig down to the CPU, remove the heatsink/heatpipe/exchanger fin assembly and give it a good clean. Clean any old silicon heat paste from the heatsink and CPU and renew it before reassembly. Clean the fan and check it spins freely as well.
A point to watch... When you remove the screws from the case, they may not all be the same length so beware! Fitting a long screw where a short one should be could cause shorts on the motherboard or damage the case when replaced and tightened.
If you copy and paste dmesg.1.gz and unpack in /home/killingthemonkey and read it with a text editor. The last few lines also. You may get lucky and find what is killing your gear also.
I went through this on my dead asus micro atx box after a brownout and had to use a live cd to access my logs on what happened. The brownout killed my cpu. I turned that box into a parts box instead of fixing it. Because after replacing the cpu. The problem moved on to the mobo.
Yhe unit was not worth fixing for me as I get free computer replacement desktops from the city.