Thank you Johnathan, I think I will play it safe and go ahead and run those programs. Also, since posting this I've learned that this could be an indication of HDD failure... but I can't see how because I JUST ran a full diagnostic on that one as well as the other two external ones and they all passed, just a couple of months ago. I am not even certain that the system rebooted itself while I was gone or not... it does that for automatic updates (which incidentally are supposed to be disabled), but I don't think that happened here. Besides that, I checked the BIOS Boot Order and it was all correct on the default settings (HDD first).
However, I have had some random BSODs in the last six months, and apparently they all have something to do with the network and NIC. Perhaps this is due to the same issue(s)? Acer hasn't released a single driver
update for this system and they are all from 2009 or earlier (but I'm afraid to try and get updated versions off of the vendor's sites because I've had massive problems with doing that on other systems and just don't have the patience to factory restore once again this year over these kinds of issues).