Startup/lockup Problem Ibook G4 8oomhz, 30gig, 128(built In) Ram


Hello, and thank you for your time.

Two weeks ago, my Ibook froze while running a text editing program. After restarting, the computer froze on the the blank blue OSX splash screen (prior to the OSX rectangle and "load status" bar coming on screen).

Further restarting leads to further freezes, and the more I restart the machine, the sooner it locks up.

For example, the first time I start the machine (after not using it for some time), it usually boots to the desktop, and locks up shortly thereafter (1-30 seconds).

Restarting from here usually gets me to the blue screen a couple times, and restarting from here gets me to the the gray, apple/turning gear screen.

As an example:
1st boot: desktop
2nd: blue screen
3rd: blue screen
4th: gray apple
5th: gray apple
6th: gray apple

etc... until eventually, it will only boot to a black screen.

I've observed patterns similar to this on several occasions, and am very confused by it.

Software technicians have tried just about everything, including resetting PRAM, diskwarrior, etc, and tell me that it is an "obvious" hardware problem, but they're not exactly sure what it is.

Even in open firmware mode, it just locks up on them. (I don't know what this means, but they seemed surprised by it).

I was wondering if this sounds consistent with any hardware problems you're familiar with.

At first I assumed it was a bad hard drive, though during one reboot, I noticed video distortions that seemed to suggest a logic board failure of some kind. The software techs also noticed some unusual video outputs, though I think this was only after working on the machine for some time.

From a relatively lay-perspective, my observations seem to suggest that performance gets worse with frequency of use/workload. Is this at all reasonable, and if so, what would be causing such a problem?

I took out all of the extra RAM (currently using only the built-in 128) and airport card, so they are not factors. Also, the machine has had significant time put into diagnosing a software problem,
so I'm pretty sure software errors are not the case.

Thank you so much for your time, and I look forward to hearing from you.