Since you mentioned that it is making weird noises, it would seem like the hard drive inside it is going bad. Yes, your ipod has a physical spinning hard drive inside of it. Thankfully, Ifixit has a whole page that is all about how to fix you Ipod. iPod 4th Generation or Photo Repair
Try reseating the ram. This means taking it out and putting it back in. I would also take an air duster to the slots to remove any dust. If it still crashes, then your ram sticks may be faulty. If they are still under warranty, you can return the faulty ram and you should get a replacement.
Seems like the battery ran too low/is acting up. Try plugging it in overnight and let it sit. Then in the morning, try to power it up. Usually, when a phones battery runs down too much, you have to plug it in and let it sit, or else it will not have enough juice to boot up. Let me know what the result was.
Only thing I can think of would be to flash the rom with a stock version of android that would come with that phone. You will need to be sure that all, and I mean ALL old data is wiped without a trace, as patient data may still be on it. Since you have alot of them, you have a couple to set aside for trying out as flashing the rom, if not done right, will brick the phone.
It has been a while since I had checked this post. It seems that it should not be resetting data whenever power is lost, it should only do that when it is hard reset. I think it may be a firmware issue but windows for some reason blocks the active sync program from installing because “it decreses system security”, and it seems windows is committed to keeping me from doing what I want.
There is a program called Speedfan, however it often does not detect the fans especially on newer computers, but you can give it a shot if you want. A program that I know will work for sure isHWmonitor, but it can only monitor temps, it cannot control fans as far as I know.
@matttia had mentioned that the drive may be broken. However, you can purchase replacement drives online and you then just need to swap the drive out and it should work again. Out of curiosity, does it even sound like it’s trying to read the disc, like can you hear the disc spinning and all that?