xbox 360 and the infamous red ring of death, this is a hardware failure due to the technology type used, the processors used are bga devices (ball grid array) ps3 and laptops also use this technology, and the problem is they do fail, after prolonged use. these devices sit on several hundred balls of solder in a grid array, due to thermal problems, expansion and cooling etc, this causes the solder to fatigue and is not as efficient as it once was.
Other reasons, maybe that some solders have had the lead removed, which is good for environmental issues, but not so good in electronics. These devices are low profile and are capable of extreme processing powers, when a good heatsink/assembly is used to shunt the extreme heat generated away from the device. a better heatsink than the xclamp is now used., however sony playstations have a similar effect, called the yellow light of death.
When this is repaired on a ps3, the mainboard is removed and heated up to about 100 degrees, then more concentrated and localised infrared heat is applied to the chip, in order to reflow the solder balls, which is about 180-240 degrees. The higher end say 240 degrees is supposed to be better. If reflow is achieved then a possible permanent fix is realized.
The problem with some versions of the xbox is, the above procedure is used, and then when reassembled it does not know it has been fixed, because of the logic implemented in the firmware. so it has to be reset by overheating it again which is a rather crude method of fooling the logic to reset it, it must latch this condition, otherwise it would know its been repaired, in a manner of speech.