Hmmm, some interesting developments here. As discussed, I uninstalled AdAware, BUT, upon the next boot-up from power-off status, it did go through the auto-reboot process. So, I verified that the AdAware was, indeed, gone. The last boot-up that I did resulted, even more strangely, in auto-reboot just barely past the iniitial screen that allows you to select between Microsoft Windows XP or the Recovery Console. It didn't even get to the Desktop load process. I think I need to go back to square one and remove all the background programs again and do some more boot testing.
Another perplexing message received was during MSCONFIG changes in the Services tab. I tried to un-check services related to the background processes and received a message indicating "service change denied....log in as system administrator". As far as I know, my "owner" login IS the adniministrator.