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Thread: AOL? Why thousands are leaving AOL.

  1. #41

    DSL user

    Hello Everyone.
    It's interesting that you're all speaking of dial up vs DSL problems and issues. To that end, I'll share my tale. The just of it is, we converted to DSL a few months back and we love it!

    I wasn't much for the Internet and had grave concerns about privacy and protection. My husband, on the other hand, contends that we must remain technologically strong. Thank God he did! He first began by buying one of those devices you connect to your TV allowing you to surf the web. The salesperson told him there were no additional phone charges and all we needed to pay was one flat monthly rate. At the time, I was calling long distance quite frequently so didn't notice the HUGE JUMP in my phone bill. When my personal long distance calls subsided, WOW did I notice the bills BIG TIME! Since my husband felt hours of Internet browsing through the TV web device was totally unrelated, I was totally confused. Of course, after numerous complaints to our local and long distance providers{} (and several conversations with any technical wizard I knew...or could find) we finally learned the truth. My husband disconnected the device and its been gathering dust ever since.

    His determination for increased technology didn't dwindle though and so began the several year search for "the right computer". If you've ever shopped for one, I need not describe what a mind blowing experience this can be. {}. Everyone claims to have the best, the most proficient, excedera, excedra...{}. Anyway, my husband grew tired of the process and late last year just closed his eyes and bought a Gateway (I hope I'm allowed to say that...). It came right to our door and was ready to go in minutes (just like they said...imagine that). But when we began surfing the net, the phone bills went crazy again.

    Then lo and behold, I overheard co-workers talking about DSL as a better Internet alternative. But it wasn't available in all areas. Wouldn't you know we just moved to an area where DSL was available and, as long time customers with prior complaints, we had no installation or start-up fees. Since then, Internet life has been wonderful! I've checked the bills each month and, because we still use land lines, they fluctuate here and there. But no where close to the $5-$600 monthly bills {} we'd seen in the past.

    I cant say enough about DSL. It didn't cure my privacy or security concerns. Rather, I've found that many have the same concerns and we're all doing what we can to safeguard our information. DSL and our computer has truly been a gift that keeps on giving. Learning opportunities are endless and I've traveled to more places (virtually, of course) than I ever thought possible.

    After all, had it not been for DSL, I may never have discovered the world of PI and the employer's site that brought me to IPIU.
    What more can be said after that? You know, I've always been told I'm too detailed. But now, I believe I've found a career where detail counts!

    Thanks for the attention. Hopes this helps someone.
    Last edited by May K. Toney; 04-24-2003 at 05:33 AM.
    MT


    God's promises are like stars; the darker the night, the brighter they shine.

  2. #42

    Re: DSL user

    Originally posted by May K. Toney
    Hello Everyone.
    It's interesting that you're all speaking of dial up vs DSL problems and issues. To that end, I'll share my tale. The just of it is, we converted to DSL a few months back and we love it!
    An interesting tail, for sure.
    The TV thing sounds like Web TV. Do you know?
    And, so you know, your dial-up connection were not the cause for your long distance charges. Now, don't get me wrong. I know you found out that changing to DSL stopped them, but the costs are not "because" of dial-up, itself.

    The costs were probably due to some dial-up ISP you were using that didn't provide a local access phone line for you. Some will give you an 800 number to call, but some won't, and don't even tell you. You probably didn't know this, and were paying for a long distance call every time you got on the Internet. That is not uncommon, for some of the National dial-up companies of the day.

    Any self respecting local ISP would give you a local number to call so you would not have to worry with any long distance charges. Then, all you had to deal with were missed incoming phone calls because you were using your phone line for surfing.

    And, I am sure your DSL is light years faster than dial-up. It is still using a phone line, but because of how it is configured, you get more bandwidth for the computer and you can also talk on the phone at the same time. You pay a flat fee for DSL, but it is much cheaper than those $600 bills from your past. It is about the same as paying for two phone lines, in most areas. The same is for cable modems.

    And, depending on your local area, DSL cab be better than a cable modem, and sometimes cable is better. It has a lot to do with wiring in your local phone company or how well your cable company is with Internet connections. Some are good and some are lousy! The technology is really not the cause as much as your local area and technical support is.

    I am glad you are happy with DSL. That probably means it is working fine in your area.

    I have a cable modem, and my area of town is not very savvy, so I don't experience much slowness during peak times. That is one thing you have to think about with a cable modem. You are on a shared connection with your neighbors. That can be a hassle if you live in an apartment complex, etc., when all of your neighbors are on cable modem, too. But, none of my neighbors have computers.

    I just wanted to clarify those phone charges for you. Dial-up is only slow, not expensive. Sounds like a salesman sold you a bill of goods, so to speak.

    Actually, dial-up is the least expensive way to connect to the Interent, after DSL and cable modems. You do have to pay for your faster connection speed.

    The cheapest dial-up ISP in my area is still $9.95 a month for unlimited connection. That gets you 56Kb connection speed, an email address and 10 megs of their disk space for a web page, too. If you can handle the slow modem connections, you can't beat that. But, with today's larger file sizes, dial-up is quickly becoming outdated.

    By the way, I hope you have anti virus software installed and a firewall.

  3. #43

    HAPPIER DSL USER

    Hello to Everyone.
    I've read all the prior notes and found them quite enlightening. My first Internet experience was directed by MSN but I didn't use it long enough to form an opinion except for slow dial up. My next experience was DSL which I truly enjoy. My older daughter lives out of state and uses yahoo with no known complaints. My younger daughter also lives out of state and uses earthlink with no known problems.

    The only dedicated AOL user I've known was a former boss who thought it was the next best thing to buttermilk pancakes (a favorite of mine). These notes cause me to wonder how she's fairing now.

    Thanks for the tips. The notes just let me know that I've been spared at least some of life's bad experiences. Keep the tips coming, I'm learning quite a lot!
    MT


    God's promises are like stars; the darker the night, the brighter they shine.

  4. #44

    aol no way

    i used to use aol at first
    the biggist reasons i no longer do and now use earthlink are
    to many teens in chat rooms including the adult rooms .

    they were very rude always cursing and messing up the chat rooms any way they could

    i always got kicked off by aol usually 20 min. or less this way very
    annoying especially while downloading a large file like an update and in the middle boom you'd get kicked off and have to start again.

  5. #45
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    AOL

    As an AOL member, I can tell you that AOL really sucks. Sometimes when I am on the internet I get kicked off of some sites out of the blue, then I have to connect again, and even checking the AOL search engine is not good. Last time I did a search engine using AOL, I couldn't even open any of the web sites that came up for my search. I have been looking for another internet provider that offers better quality, but there is just too many choices, who can give me some suggestions?
    Robert Smith

  6. Robert,

    Yahoo is very good. Their price is reasonable, and I haven't gotten many porn sites. I still have my AOL account, which gets flooded with porn and every ad imaginable. Their spam blocker is very poor, and it takes forever to upload a website. You would think that with all the upgrades AOL has made, they would have fixed this very major problem.

    I'm glad I switched to Yahoo. There are several ISPs out there that might better suit your needs. Shop and compare.

  7. #47
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    Thanks for the info. Deborah. It may come in handy, but I will shop around and compare.
    Robert Smith

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    Re: AOL

    Originally posted by Robert Smith
    when I am on the internet I get kicked off of some sites out of the blue, then I have to connect again, and even checking the AOL search engine is not good.
    I think the majority of investigators have gone to DSL connection (or maybe satelite or high-speed cable).

    I believe AOL still uses the old and very slow dial-up internet connection, which is like going back to 8-track audio tapes in a CD Age.

  9. #49
    Edwina Berlijn -'s Avatar
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    that was sure interesting to read all the news ...I still use AOL, but had some probles with them, like I discontinued an e-mail address and used another and my daughter had also her e-mail address..well, I have a hell of a time to get the other e-mail address off the bill, and I am still trying!!! I was unable to remember my pass-word, and I have tried everything that I can think of (of all the pass-words) to get the old email address off the account! Does anybody know how to talk to the AOL personel??? I have asked for help so many times, to delete that account of the many months of un-used email address! Any suggestions are svery welcome

    edwina berlijn

  10. #50
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    Originally posted by Edwina Berlijn
    I have asked for help so many times, to delete that account of the many months of un-used email address! Any suggestions are svery welcome

    edwina berlijn
    Keep a copy of your disconnect request, and notify your credit card bank (if there are any more charges).

  11. #51
    Edwina Berlijn -'s Avatar
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    Thank you Ms Warner !!!! That is a very good advice, I will do that, and will call the credit card company too. Thanks alot!!

    edwina berlijn

  12. #52
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    AOL won't be billing me much longer Now that broadband has been installed and is so far working quite well, I'm working to change my e-mail with all contacts and complete the transition. It's so nice not to have my system lock up or crash and I can clearly see the problem was AOL. It's nice to see so many people agree and have experienced similar issues. Thanks for sharing, too bad AOL doesn't seem to take their customer satisfaction seriously. In order to remain competetive and hold onto their valued customers, they seem to be in dire need of drastic change.
    Kathie


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  13. #53
    Edwina Berlijn -'s Avatar
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    Kathie

    Do you really like Broad Band??? I have not checked it out ...can you tell me more about that? I see commercials all the time, but is it also a phone??? Like to hear more about your experiance with that company...

    Edwina Berlijn

  14. #54
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    Hi Edwina,

    I love Broadband compared to dial up and so far have had no problems with it. It's a lot faster and it's always on, so never need to wait to get connected. I also got a wireless router and now have networked several computers and my laptop to be online at the same time, nice benefit. I got broadband through the cable company, in this area, we have Comcast. Since the connection is through a cable modem, it leaves the telephone line free. Broadband connection costs about $45 extra on my cable bill, and took about 20 minutes for the cable company to install.
    I highly recommend it and if I can be of any further help, please let me know.
    Kathie


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  15. #55
    I got rid of AOL back in March, and got a cable modem from a local cable provider that I already had cable with. The provider could not keep us up, but I did not care to much because it was not important that 20%-30% of the time it was down. After joining the IPIU it became important that I could get online and stay online after months of having repair people to the house we went to WOW. Now I get way better cable, the cable modem has not went down and I pay just over half of what I was.

  16. #56
    Originally posted by Kathleen Padgett
    [B...It's nice to see so many people agree and have experienced similar issues. Thanks for sharing, too bad AOL doesn't seem to take their customer satisfaction seriously. In order to remain competetive and hold onto their valued customers, they seem to be in dire need of drastic change. [/B]
    I have Roadrunner, which is the cable ISP through Time Warner. AOL purchased the whole Time Warner (Time mag., Warner Bros., too) a while back. Also, they purchased Netscape Navigator.

    Personally, I wish it hadn't purchased all of these, but it does tend to pad your pocket book, when you own such large companies. That means they can fudge more on the AOL customers. Don't forget when (about 1 or 2 years ago?) when AOL tried to FORCE Time magazine and all other New York Time Warner companies to use their AOL email and messenger to communicate among themselves. They also had "converted" a version of Netscape that they also tried to FORCE upon their workers. After many, many problems, and down time with the fast paced New York offices, AOL relented and allowed all offices to use their email of choice.
    I think they were using their own people as guinie pigs, in a way. It's too bad a company that is so large has such a woaful reputation.

    I personally prefer Netscape over I.E., but since AOL owns it, it has been aboard the same sinking ship!

    And, maybe something that is similar, since it has become very hot in my neck of the woods, my cable modem connection has disconnected itself over and over again, even many times an hour. I get it to reconnect only to see it disconnected while I was reading a web page.

    Time Warner/Roadrunner hasn't admitted it to me, but there is talk that the hot temperatures cause strange things to happen somewhere in the mess of wires that are outside in the weather. Nobody has said where, what, when or how, but I have seen a bit of a pattern, since finding this out.

    Today it is 102 degrees, and I have had a terrible time staying connected. Also, when I am connected, it is sometimes half as fast as it should be.

    I'm not one to be hornswaggled, so I will get to the bottom of this, in time. Anything I find out, I will pass on to the IPIU forums, either in this thread or the DSL or Cable thread. Maybe even both! That is, if I can stay connected long enough to get it done!

    Now...time to hit enter. Any bets on if I am still connected after typing this message?

    ..........

    Edited this to let you all know...I was still connected. Oh how thankful we become for small favors.
    Last edited by Michael Whiteaker -; 07-18-2003 at 04:51 PM.

  17. #57
    Hey everyone,

    I have never had AOL (thank goodness). Everyone I know who has ever used AOL has had nothing but problems. I've been using Visionary the last few months and really like it. Though I think it's local to my area of the country Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, etc.

    I've always found the best service by checking around with the different options available in my area.

  18. #58
    Michael Harris is offline Lifetime Professional Management Member

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    Cool

    I am still locked into AOL because some members of my family are so locked in that they are forced to stay with AOL.

    I use Comcast cable on my desktop, but I still use AOL (through NetZero) on my laptop.

    I still maintain 6 email accounts -- each for a different purpose.
    Michael E. Harris

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  19. #59
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    Question

    I'm so confused now! I thought I would get on this forum and a few people would discuss their favorite ISP. So now I don't know what to do. I have AOL on dial-up and haven't had any problems. It's a little slow, but nothing I can't handle.

    Thanks for all the input from everyone, but like I said "I'm so confused".

    Colleen L Hayes Badge #6915

  20. #60
    Michael Harris is offline Lifetime Professional Management Member

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    Colleen,

    I am now up to AOL 9.0a (Optimized). AOL and Comcast do not like each other. And neither likes the McAfee Personal Firewall.

    I use Comcast on my desktop, but access the internet through NetZero on my laptop. I have several machines, several users, and two physical locations. Confusion reigns.
    Michael E. Harris

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  21. #61
    Originally posted by Colleen L Hayes
    I'm so confused now! I thought I would get on this forum and a few people would discuss their favorite ISP. So now I don't know what to do. I have AOL on dial-up and haven't had any problems. It's a little slow, but nothing I can't handle.

    Thanks for all the input from everyone, but like I said "I'm so confused".
    Colleen, contrary to what some Information Systems people may want you to believe, computer technology is not rocket science. What works for one might not work for another.

    This thread is only to advise you of what might happen, because of what others have experienced. It isn't intended to mean anything will happen.

    The more advanced things are, more things can go wrong. Just because DSL and cable connections are faster and seem popular doesn't mean they will work for your needs. Faster isn't always better, when it is also more expensive. And, your particular area may not have good service in one of these choices.

    I know of more than one person in my town who complain that DSL is full of problems. And, I'm very sure there are about the same number of people who love it. The same goes for cable. Sometimes, it seems it's just the luck of the draw. Unfortunately, I've had my cable ISP guys questioning their savvy, more than once.

    If you are happy with your present situation, and not experiencing problems, stay with it. But, if something does happen, you have the info here to help you figure it out.

    And, there are more than a few "techie" PIs who can assist you, if you come up against one of those insurmountable technology walls.

  22. #62
    Originally posted by Deborah Woehr
    Robert,

    I'm glad I switched to Yahoo. There are several ISPs out there that might better suit your needs. Shop and compare.
    I am an avid DSL user, and will probably never switch back. I have a brother in Melbourne, FL who is very happy with his AOL association, BUT, he recently moved and signed up with the dial-up service you can get at Wal-MArt. Low and behold, it is AOL, marketed under the WAL-maRT BRAND NAME, and it costs only HALF of what he's been paying for years. So far, he reports that the services are identical.

    FYI,

    Mark

  23. #63
    Originally posted by Mark Aloise


    I am an avid DSL user, and will probably never switch back. I have a brother in Melbourne, FL who is very happy with his AOL association, BUT, he recently moved and signed up with the dial-up service you can get at Wal-MArt. Low and behold, it is AOL, marketed under the WAL-maRT BRAND NAME, and it costs only HALF of what he's been paying for years. So far, he reports that the services are identical.

    FYI,

    Mark
    That's interesting. I guess there is a Walmart brand equivalent of just about everything?

    I recently switched from Roadrunner cable to DSL. I was having connection problems. But, my problem was getting lost in the Time Warner cloud. In my area, Time Warner is the tech connection for Roadrunner, AOL, AOL Broadband and Earthlink High Speed Internet, just to mention the main ones.

    This matrix of confusion has to have them on the road to customer problems like mine that just get lost in the cracks. I can't imagine another AOL copy via Walmart that is surely under their umbrella, too.

    Time Warner recently decided to take the initials "AOL" off their logo and name. It seems the partnership might also be becoming a byproduct of the same confusion. Only time will tell (no pun intended).

    Time Warner is huge. AOL is (well...was) huge. Bigger isn't better for the consumers, in the end. It just looks good on the stock market ticker.

  24. #64
    Michael Harris is offline Lifetime Professional Management Member

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    Michael/Mark,

    I moved to the other side of my town about 7 moths ago and I got cable TV and cable Internet from Comcast. Comcast has always had trouble in my part of NJ, so I have trouble with the Internet connection.

    I had AOL for years and too many people and companies had my AOL account(s). My estranged wife is too wedded to AOL to ever change. I still have her on my account.

    My daughter and I are moving away form AOL. The problem is that I have AOL 9.0a on my desktop. This is so far superior to any other email that I have had. The anti-spam feature has cut down on my email - 75 or more emails a day.

    Comcast mail did not even have a Reply All feature until Wednesday of this week. They also added some anti-spam features, but I have not had it long enough to test it.

    As a browser, AOL is weak, but I always had IE running anyway.

    I still have both IE and Netscape running - there are so many sites that can handle one and not the other.

    If Wal-Mart is offering AOL for half of what AOL is charging, I would consider it.

  25. #65
    Thomas J Nicol's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Michael Harris
    I moved to the other side of my town about 7 moths ago and I got cable TV and cable Internet from Comcast. Comcast has always had trouble in my part of NJ, so I have trouble with the Internet connection.

    My estranged wife is too wedded to AOL to ever change. I still have her on my account.

    My daughter and I are moving away form AOL.
    Hi Michael,

    I was pretty locked into AOL, myself, with my wife an avid user. The service was marginal, with me being knocked off "too often". The opportunity for hi-speed internet through local RoadRunner offered me the potential to increase speed, stop being dropped, and have better all around service. I was even one of the beta test sites in my area.

    The biggest problem was to get my wife off AOL mail and onto Outlook Express. Once she made the jump of faith, with a bit of grumbling, may I add, to the new service, I think going back to the old speed would be prohibitive. Actually, she is using the internet considerably more since the change-over.

    It's too bad about the service in your area. I get between 30 and 60 emails a day. Recently, I was out of town for a few days and upon arriving back, I had an enormous number of messages to wade through.

    All the best with your service, but considering paying about $23.00 a month for dial up would raise a red flag for me. I guess if you could get the exact same service for half would be an option.

    Have a great day,
    TJ#5756
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  26. #66
    Michael Harris is offline Lifetime Professional Management Member

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    TJ,

    I pay $9.95 for AOL and will be leaving it soon. My estranged wife is concerned that I have the ability to read her email.

    AOL and McAfee's Personal Firewall do NOT get along. AOL crashes daily. I will be out of AOL by the new year.

  27. #67
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    Question

    Michael,

    That must be limited access for the AOL, since I'm pretty sure, in general, unlimited access costs $22.95 +/-.

    Anyway, hi-speed is so nice!

    Take care,
    TJ#5756
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  28. #68
    Michael Harris is offline Lifetime Professional Management Member

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    TJ,

    I have the Bring Your Own Access plan. I have full, unlimited access to AOL for many accounts (I think were are down to 4). I alos have the very latest version (9.0a). There are some nice features in the email, but the rest of what they offer is minimal.

    I travel and cannot use Comcast cable for my laptop; I use NetZero for that.

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    Re: AOL,DSL,WINDOWS XP

    Originally posted by John Fromm
    If your running Windows XP,have AOL and want DSL your going to have to download a patch from AOL to be able to log on.

    In my case,I found that I had to either keep my computer on 24-7 or download the patch everytime I wanted to log on.

    I was disgusted by this and cancelled the service. I still have AOL dial up but thats about to change also .

    Funny thing was, when I signed up for the service,which was about 4 months ago, AOL didn`t inform me of the compatability issues they were having at the time! It was only after I contacted them did did they say" Oh yeah were experiencing a compatability problem with XP right now blah blah blah"..

    My experience with the set up was not a good one so anybody considering DSL while running XP w/AOL as your ISP . . . good luck to you .

    Hey thank you John. I am using XP and have some difficulties myself. Any and all information is really helpful. I very recently switched from msn to earthlink, however the links through aol are sometimes too distressing.
    Angela Virgo

  30. #70

    Re: Re: AOL,DSL,WINDOWS XP

    Originally posted by Angela Virgo



    Hey thank you John. I am using XP and have some difficulties myself. Any and all information is really helpful. I very recently switched from msn to earthlink, however the links through aol are sometimes too distressing.
    The problem with XP and DSL isn't AOL's fault. Well, I shouldn't say for sure, but there are problems with XP and most DSL connections, depending on the version of XP you have installed.

    There is an installable patch, and that fixes it, as far as I know. I don't have XP, but I have a several friends who do. They all have a new enough version that the patch isn't needed, and their connection is fine.

    My DSL provider said the patch fixes the issue. AS far as I'm concerned, I would be more apt to blame Microsoft for the glitch than AOL, at this point. AOL isn't always the cause.

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    Thumbs up Re: Re: Re: AOL,DSL,WINDOWS XP

    Originally posted by Michael Whiteaker

    The problem with XP and DSL isn't AOL's fault. Well, I shouldn't say for sure, but there are problems with XP and most DSL connections, depending on the version of XP you have installed.

    There is an installable patch, and that fixes it, as far as I know. I don't have XP, but I have a several friends who do. They all have a new enough version that the patch isn't needed, and their connection is fine.

    My DSL provider said the patch fixes the issue. AS far as I'm concerned, I would be more apt to blame Microsoft for the glitch than AOL, at this point. AOL isn't always the cause.
    At this point I am really apt to agree with you. MSN is not really rating high in my book either. Thanks for responding
    Angela Virgo

  32. #72

    An Ex-AOL user

    I was on AOL for about 10 years or so. About a month ago, I finally came to my senses and ordered a local internet provider. I know pay half of what I paid for with AOL, have less connection problems, and find I miss very little. The weird thing is that when I tried to dislocate my AOL services, they insisted on giviing me this long spiel on why I should stay. When I tried to interrupt him, I was told if I did not let him continue, he couldnt disconnect my services. Sounds like blackmail to me.

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    Re: earthlink dsl

    Originally posted by Kevin M Erick
    I use earthlink dsl and I love it. Earthlink has a no spam filter that I couldn't live without after having it. no more deleting 50 e-mails to read 5. I too am also an EX-AOL user
    I agree. I have recently changed to earthlink and I use an XP. I did find that I had a lot of problems getting AOL programs uninstalled from my computer. I had never used AOL, the the Comp USA, I purchased the computer from, had tried to install it at the time of purchase. AOL has a lot of problems when it comes to being compatible.
    Angela Virgo

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    Re: Re: earthlink dsl

    Originally posted by Angela Virgo


    I agree. I have recently changed to earthlink and I use an XP. I did find that I had a lot of problems getting AOL programs uninstalled from my computer. I had never used AOL, the the Comp USA, I purchased the computer from, had tried to install it at the time of purchase. AOL has a lot of problems when it comes to being compatible.
    Or disconnected.
    Angela Virgo

  35. #75
    Michael Harris is offline Lifetime Professional Management Member

    Distinguished Insignio Colleague of:
    International Private Investigators Union (IPIU)
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    3,788
    I had to lodge complaints with the Offices of the Attorney General in both Georgia (where EartLink is located) and in New Jersey (where I live).

    EarthLink caused me so much trouble and computer damage.

    I still have AOL (9.0 Optimized) and it has some nice features in e-mail - spam filter is the best I have seen. I am leaving AOL as soon as one of my family gets her own account.

    I use Comcast cable and it is not UP offen enough to say it is 'always on'.

    I am not happy with anything that I can use at home.
    Michael E. Harris

    Badge #6718

  36. #76
    [QUOTE

    I am not happy with anything that I can use at home. [/B][/QUOTE]

    Michael,

    I'm sorry to hear your tale of internet trouble. I used Road Runner in California, Verizon DSL on the west coast of Florida and now BellSouth DSL on the east coast of Florida. My brother, 23 minutes south, has Road Runner and loves it. The BellSouth has no spam or pop-up blocker and it's making me nuts. Version was okay.

    For my money, Road Runner (although now owned by AOL) is still the best. I'll soon be relocating to New Jersey and intend to look into Road Runenr there as well, but not before some research. I have some friends in the city that have great success with MSN dial-up, but I've had high speed for so long, I'm afraid no dial up will make me happy.

    Mark Aloise

  37. #77
    It is not always the company that will make your connection good or bad. With DSL, the city's phone system hardware has a lot to do with a good connection. DSL is still rather new technology and new technology needs a good connection. Older switching hardware can inhibit that. The closer you are to the local hub, the better for your connection and ultimate speed.

    With cable, it has a lot to do with how the cable is used in your imediate location. Cable is run in continuous loops. They feed it out in several directions, but your connection could suffer if there are a lot of appartments close by. Your connection could be slower at times, because it is likely that whole appartment complex is on your loop. When another person is added to your loop or someone is a heavy user, your connection will suffer slighty.

    Also, cable has problems, like anything else. Anything that exists in the extremes of weather will have problems from time to time. How fast your local company deals with these issues should also be part of your investigations in choosing.

    I had Roadrunner, but had multiple problems keeping a connection. I found a way to reconnect on my own, but the local help didn't seem to want to find or couldn't find the problem. When one tech told me it could be the sun's heat on the cable causing my problem, I decided to make a change.

    Time Warner and Roadrunner are now using commercials to get new customers to go with Roadrunner. The main tag of the commercial is their "UP TO 50%" increase in speed, and also the fact that Roadrunner is "nearly 50% faster than the basic DSL connection".

    Don't be swayed by such commercials. Roadrunner in my area has a monthly charge of about $45. Basic DSL has a starting charge (for the first year) of $29. That will move to $39 after the first year. In my area, the best choice is to go with DSL, because you are saving money in the first year, and even the second year is cheaper.

    True, the cable connection is faster, but to be 50% faster, you have to be in special areas where the cable is new and the connection is short, and there are no multiple dwellings connected with you. That's too many ifs, in my book.

    Also, DSL has several choices. The basic will be $39 after the first year. There are at least two upper level choices which compete more with the cable. One is $49 (after the first year ot $39) and another is $59 (after the first year of $49).

    These have more speed, up and down the pipe, and also offer more options within the package itself. There is only one option for Roadrunner and only one price.

    Keep in mind that any DSL connection will be independant of any of your neighbors. So, your speed shouldn't change much in the course of a day. That is a real difference between cable and DSL.

    BUT!!!!

    The whole thing boils down to where you are in your local area. In some cities, cable is the preferred connection because DSL either isn't available or the system hardware is very old. Older cities can potentially have this problem, but again that is not always true.

    So, when others say they like cable or DSL or Earthlink or whoever, that is only in their area. Unless you happen to live next door to them, you can't use that opinion, in choosing your ISP.

    You should talk to people in your area to find out what works for them. In my city, some still prefer Roadrunner, as it works well for them. But, in my particular part of town, and on south from me, DSL is prefered.

    This cable problem included Roadrunner, though Time Warner, and also Comcast connections. It seemed my problem was not local to just me.

    As I said once before, it is the luck of the draw in some cases. But, if your neighborhoods like cable, and there are more than one with that impression, that is a good chance it will work for you. But, that also works for DSL.

    Don't think that someone having problems with cable in New Jersey is going to mean you will have the same problems in Colorado. If you want to know about a connection problem, check with your neighbors or people in the area very close to your home.

    Now, as for AOL, I wouldn't ever want it. It isn't cheap and it isn't easy to uninstall. It is possible, but the average person will have problems. One thing is that AOL adapter it installs. You have to get rid of that, and the uninstall doesn't seem to do it.

    But, people are all different. I know some who LOVE AOL and wouldn't be without it. It does hae some good features in it, if you have kids that get on the Internet. You can control what they see and don't see.

    My cable problems were through Time Warner. Were they because AOL is largely the owner of Time Warner? I would hope that isn't the case. I would prefer to say it was because Time Warner is so large, they don't see the individual as they should and just look at the total numbers.

    If they have an X number of connections for a month, they are happy. It doesn't seem to matter if these connections are new or old, satisfied or unsatisfied. Of course, that's just my opinion and you should't use it as a template. I'm a little disgruntled from my experiences.

  38. #78
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    419

    My DSL

    I will quickly chime in here and tell you I just love my DSL. Prior to this, I had ISDN and it was a real pain in the neck!

    As far as internet security, I have just installed Zonealarm Pro and I couldn't be more pleased. It is supposed to be one of the stronger programs out there for security. I like it better than Norton as it seems to be more thorough.

    Mary

  39. #79
    Thanks for the info Mary, and thanks to Michael for some GREAT dialog on a very confusing subject!

    This is what makes these forums so valuable.

    Mark

  40. #80
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    135

    AOL

    I gave up AOL about 4 years ago, because of problems that they kept saying was due to Mirosoft. After, switching to MSN I have not had any problems. I now have MSN 9, for dial-up. I tried to get DSL but you have to be close to a DSL networking area.
    Alfonso Pelote, Case Examiner Badge # 7092

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