How do I remove the AOL Dialer?

How to disable, remove or delete the AOL Dialer

One question I get fairly often is, “How do I disable the AOL Dialer?” or “How do I remove the AOL Dialer?” How the question is worded matters: disabling the AOL Dialer is not the same thing as removing it. If you remove it, you might not be able to use AOL dial-up to get online.

To connect you to the Web through dial-up, AOL makes proprietary software, called the AOL Dialer, which connects your computer to AOL. It’s up in the air whether you can bypass the dialer by setting up your dial-up connection manually. AOL gives instructions for doing so, but for many AOL users (myself included, back in the day) using a manual setup without the AOL Dialer doesn’t always work, even if your dial-up modem is working fine.

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How to Completely Delete AOL From Vista

This how-to is for people who get an error message when they try to remove AOL from Vista. If you are not getting the error messages mentioned in this post, please see How to Remove AOL (any version).

Deleting AOL from Vista - a tutorial

So you’re an ex-AOL user who’s moved on from Windows XP to Windows Vista. You put AOL software on your new Vista computer or added it to a new Vista install on your old computer back when you still paid for AOL.

Now it’s days, months, or years later, you’ve finally canceled AOL, and you no longer want to keep AOL installed, even if you can still use it for free, but you can’t get rid of it no matter what you do.

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Switching to Firefox

So you’re ready to make the big switch. You’ve set up an account with a new service provider so you won’t lose your Web connection, you’ve saved your AOL email, Favorites and AOL Address Book, and you want to call AOL soon to cancel your account.

In the meantime, you’re looking to get rid of AOL’s software and on the lookout for a way to get on the Web that’s fresh, fast, and fun. Maybe a friend or co-worker told you about Firefox and you’re intrigued. You should be. Nearly 25% of web users worldwide are devoted to Firefox, with it’s clean, simple look, exceptional speed, excellent pop-up controls, and awesome private browsing features. (Edit, 12-21-2009: Firefox 3.5 is now the most popular browser in the world.) This article will help you make the switch.

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Losing money on AOL after you cancel? It’s a small consolation, but…

AOL is losing money on itself, too. In the last five years its valuation (what people think it might be worth if sold to another entity) has dropped from the $20 billion Google pegged it at in 2005 to a mere $4 billion to $4.3 billion, according to several analysts.

If you cancel AOL but can’t get them to stop billing you, how does this affect you? It doesn’t. It can be hard to fight AOL for your money back, but it can be done. In the meantime, you can comfort yourself with thoughts of karmic retribution visited upon the company by itself, which has seen it’s value sliced, diced and basically diminished to nothing over the years by its own mismanagement.

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How to Remove AOL (any version) From Windows 7 When It Hangs

There’s an issue with removing more recent versions of AOL from Windows 7 (and therefore I assume all versions of AOL): when you click the Windows button –>Control Panel –> Programs and Features, then click on the AOL Uninstaller (choose which products to remove), it asks you to scan for “older versions of AOL” (it’s not like you have a choice – you can’t skip this step, or you won’t find any AOL clients) then it hangs during the scan.

And it hangs. And it hangs.

If you have a more recent version of AOL installed, you can right-click the Taskbar (or hit Ctrl-Alt-Delete – whichever makes you happy), open Task Manager, end the process for aolunins_us.exe, then shut down and restart your computer. That should stop the AOL Uninstaller from hanging on your next try.

If you have an older version of AOL installed on Windows 7 (such as AOL 9.0SE), you can follow these steps [works in all versions of Windows], then, if necessary, follow the steps above.

Once you restart your computer and run the Uninstaller again it should find all versions of AOL for you. From there you can use this tutorial [for XP or Vista] to remove all AOL software specified on those pages from Windows 7, including AOL 9.5 Revision 4337.80.

Alternately, on Windows 7 you can try right-clicking the Taskbar to open Task Manager, then ending all processes with “aol” in their name, then running the Uninstaller again. The AOL Uninstaller will still take at least 5 minutes to find all versions of AOL installed – even if you have only one version, so be prepared to chill out while you wait.

PS – I can’t believe AOL software even works on Windows 7, but as the first person to document the first bug with AOL on Windows 7, I had to watch this monstrosity alive and well on my own computer – in 3 different versions. I was hoping I’d get nothing but fatal error messages to save myself the trouble of writing new posts about AOL, but no such luck.

[FAQ] It’s NOT true that you will lose your high-speed connection to the Internet if you cancel AOL!

AOL Is LYING

I’m not going to beat around the bush: AOL is run by liars, thieves and crooks. Take this lie slapped across a cancel page on aol.com:

This is a LIE

“If you cancel you will no longer have an Internet connection, live technical support or security software.”

FACT: In the US, most of you will NOT lose your high-speed connection to the Internet if you cancel AOL.

There are a few exceptions:

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Call AOL – AOL Customer Service Phone Numbers, Online LInks and Contact Info – Updated 1-18-2016

Call AOL – AOL Phone Numbers, Online Links & Contact Info for US, UK & International Callers

AOL phone numbers and contact info.

Updated 1-18-2016.

Every few years I take an entire day out of my life to dial all of the AOL phone numbers you see on this list. AOL constantly shuffles phone numbers around and often disconnects or reroutes them, so this sort of “in-the-field” work is sadly very necessary. As of 1-18-2016, all of the phone numbers and website links you see here should work as advertised.

If any US or non-US AOL phone numbers no longer work or if dedicated phone lines for certain departments suddenly reroute to general numbers, or if you find more phone numbers and addresses for AOL that are not listed here, please let me know.

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