Tested: instructions are still up-to-date and work on latest version of AIM Pro as of 6-2-08.
As mentioned in Why You Want to Uninstall AIM Now, AIM has a lot of weaknesses that make it very unsafe, especially in light of the latest vulnerability exposed by Core Security researchers. It’s best to simply uninstall it and use something safer.
Messengers that I like are Pidgin (formerly known as GAIM), Trillian, and the latest version of MSN Messenger, which really kicks butt.
What follows is how to uninstall AIM Pro.
AOL Toolbar In All New HPs (Hewlett-Packard Computers)
As many of you know, AOL will soon preload AOL Toolbars and set AOL as your default home page and search engine in every new HP computer you buy thanks to a deal they made this month with Hewlett-Packard.
Here’s a general purpose tutorial on how to remove the AOL Toolbar from IE, all versions from 5.0 to the latest version out on 6-1-08, from any PC running Windows.
A reader named Scott sent me his AOL cancellation story last week.
Among other things, AOL seems to be violating US phone number portability regulations with their latest scheme…
Hello Marah Marie-
I know you get a lot of these, but I just wanted to tell you my AOL horror story.
I would like to think I wasn’t stupid enough to sign-up for an AOL account, but apparently I did so without knowing it. It started when many of my friends started using AOL Instant Messenger (AIM). I was suckered into believing that signing up for a free AIM screenname wouldn’t cause me any problems. Boy was I wrong.
Last updated 12-23-09.
Issue: You want to remove AOL, but you’re missing the AOL Uninstaller.
Solution: Remove AOL without it.
Difficulty Level: Easy
So you want to remove AOL from your Windows PC but when you check Add/Remove programs you’re missing the AOL Uninstaller (or the entry for “AOL Choose Which Version to Remove”).
What to do? This is one of the most frequently asked questions about removing AOL. What follows is a pretty simple way to remove AOL that doesn’t harm your computer. Whether you’re a tech who’s looking for the easiest way to get AOL off of your customer’s computers, or a beginner who can’t get AOL off of your PC, this page is for you.
I tested this method on AOL 9.0 SE, AOL 9.0 Optimized, AOL 9.0 VR, AOL 9.1 GM (the first public release of 9.1), AOL 9.1, and AOL Desktop on both Windows XP and Windows Vista. This method works well on both operating systems. See this tutorial if you’re a Vista or Windows 7 user.
I’ve been asked by an anonymous commenter for a list of people laid off at AOL. I don’t have access to such a list but anyone who cares to send me one will have my eternal thankfulness, not to mention the thankfulness of everyone else on the Web who’s just as curious as I am.
What I’ve done in the meantime is collect posts and comments scattered across Silicon Alley Insider and other websites about who got laid off and and organize them for everyone else’s benefit.
I’ve been highly dissatisfied with Yahoo! Answers as a knowledge base since the day they rolled it out. My blog is suggested to people trying to cancel or uninstall AOL an average of once a month on Yahoo! Answers, so that isn’t why.
AOL is in a dreadful state of affairs with Randy Falco and Ron Grant (aka “Smithers & Burns”, a snarky insider reference to characters on The Simpsons) now running the show. I said last year that AOL was moving away from access into advertising, that Falco did not understand the Internet or any aspect of AOL’s business, and I always thought that tiny Ron Grant, (i.e. “Falco’s brain” or some such thing) was fairly clueless. I haven’t called it wrong yet, so love me or hate me, don’t say I never gave you a good (and early) warning.
A source for Henry Blodget at Silicon Alley Insider has confirmed 2,000 people at AOL are out of jobs. Nice to know Falco lays people off by email instead of in person; what a warm, personal touch he lends to the ordeal. Here’s a snippet:
“As a part of this realignment, tomorrow we begin a reduction in force that will, over the next couple of months, affect a total of about 2,000 people out of our worldwide workforce of 10,000.
Everyone impacted by this reduction deserves our thanks and respect for their contributions to the company. We will aid these individuals in their transition to new opportunities as much as possible, most importantly with what we believe are generous severance packages.”
The email was sent to everyone at AOL at 11 this morning and explains that because AOL wants to focus on their re-birth as an advertising platform, the employees are no longer needed.
I was going to save this post for Oct. 16th when the AOL layoffs are rumored to start en masse, but there’s too much coming out of Silicon Valley Insider to put it off much longer. I’m not horribly impressed with Henry Blodget’s coverage, although he’s been quite thorough, the best of the bloggers on the beat, because he panders to idiots and writes a lot of filler to mark time and inch page views up, but some of the tips and stories left on his blog by anonymous AOL employees are priceless.
AOL is making the news yet again for dropping Kaspersky’s rebranded anti-virus tool (which was free for anyone to download and use) not because it’s one of the stupidest decisions they ever made (we covered that here already) but because their inferior replacement for it, McAfee, is only available to AOL members.
News Flash, everyone…
You’re not missing much without it. There’s truckloads of user testaments to the fact that McAfee doesn’t even work. AOL is doing everyone a favor by denying all but their unvalued members access to the crappiest antivirus software on the face of the Earth (besides Norton, the #1 most hulking, overblown behemoth of antivirus tools).
Even if you have all the money in the world to blow on antivirus software, disable what you’re using and try AVG instead…after all, saving money and still having a quality product work hard to protect your computer is a good thing, right?