For the last week or so, Shockwave has been going nuts on me. At first, it had only occurred with a stupid little tower defense game, and only on the level where I had enough towers up that I thought that could be overwhelming it. In the past day or so, it got to the point of nearly every page I loaded getting stalled with a 'The plugin has stopped responding' message.
At that point, I started looking for answers to what I thought must just be my aging machine getting dyspeptic on me. Then I find pages and pages of people complaining about it, and particularly complaining about how Adobe won't talk to you unless you shell out $39. >.<
So, on the off-chance that this is affecting other people here, I figured I'd post what seems to have brought me some relief. I went into my Add/Remove Programs and removed anything that said Flash or Shockwave, and rebooted. Then, I hit up one of the sites that I knew used Flash, and re-installed the plug-in when prompted. So far, everything is running smooth as satin.