Question: My computer is taking a really long time to shut down or restart - like a few minutes. Drives me nuts. Any solutions?
Answer: I had the exact same thing happen on my kid's PC that's running Windows XP. I tried all kinds of things, like registry cleaner programs, disk optimizers, windows update, and applying service packs. Nothing worked, and for a long time I had to just endure the problem.
I recently installed Panda Internet Security on that machine, and it found a slew of viruses and malware programs that were installed (probably from one of the kid's games websites they visited).
It was able to remove them all from my system and the slow shutdown problem went away immediately.
I'm not sure which virus caused the problem, but it hasn't returned since I installed Panda, so I'd recommend giving it a try.
Here's a link to the Panda download page where you can try it for free.