1. Taskbar locks up. Start button stops working. Only solution seems to be to restart the computer and use the F8 button for Safe mode. Computer doesn't go into Safe mode but it does work afterwords.
2. In the middle of watching a downloaded TV show the taskbar locked up and the TV speakers quit working. I had the computer attached to the TV using an HDMI cable (still do, actually as I'm listening through the laptop speakers) and suddenly, mid-program, the sound shut off.
So maybe the two issues are related. I am assuming, for now, that a restart will fix the problem but it is a bit annoying. I am going to finish watching the show and then do a restart. I'll update the post when I do.