AOL 9.0 Optimized – Save your printer ink!

Since family and friends rely on me for advice and tips on the computer, I’m also the designated installer for them. When I go to their house, I take CD’s with me of programs they could use, and fix whatever they need fixing. They all use AOL, so when a new version of AOL is out, they want to know if it is worth installing.

I’ve decided to install AOL 9.0 Optimized tonight to see if it is anything my family/friends should use. First off, it wants to install some files, and then wants me to reboot, otherwise I won’t be able to use the service. Okay, so I let it install whatever it wants, then reboot. I come back, and it wants to do it again, install files and reboot. I do that, and when I run it again, I got the same message again. Then it’s official; AOL still sucks. To add insult to injury, it froze my computer when I try to remove it from Add/Remove Programs. It also installed 4 folders worth of programs in C:\ that I won’t ever use. It forces me to right click the AOL icon on the desktop and choose Delete. The delete key doesn’t work on it. I can’t imagine what it would do if I decided to print something. It would probably use up all my brother toner trying to print just one document!

Is it worth it when a program makes you jump through hoops like this? Absolutely not. It’s even more not worth it when you read stories like this and this.

Conclusions? My family and friends should pursue other avenues of internet service. Choices are MSN, EarthLink, PeoplePC, or just a local ISP. The sooner people realize there are better alternatives out there, the sooner we get the service we deserve on the internet, and not what corporate high-rollers dictate.

42 Responses to “AOL 9.0 Optimized – Save your printer ink!”

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  1. I thought you knew that AOL doesn’t mean America On Line it means A**holes On Line.

    Every time I come up against an internet problem it turns out they have installed AOL. Drives me nuts.
    Get your family on something else Matt.

  2. I agree, and you know how I feel about those corporate high rollers too ;)

  3. M82Palmer


    lol AOL in the UK is a joke too, the best bit is when i get people coming into work and saying AOL doesnt work on my pc, i have spoken to AOL and they have told me its my computer!

  4. My dad got that same response a few days ago, and I told him it was AOL. For proof, switch to MSN or Earthlink. I think he’s going to soon, he’s getting pretty fed up with being disconnected all the time.

  5. chris

    aol sucks, that’s all that needs to be said. I was on AOL 6 years ago, and it sucked back then, and there’s still people on it? It’s 2004 people.. if your poor grandma is on aol, help her change isps before aol overcharges her credit card and exausts the funds. aol is one of americas most hated companies. they shall go to hell

  6. mark~e

    well i just tried installing 9.0 and after it downloaded it, it just dissappeared and wont let me even start to download it again. i say screw it.



  8. Matt Burris

    Huh? This isn’t an ad, it’s a personal rant.

  9. Thanks for all the above info on AOL & helping me decide against it. Claudia November 30, 2003

  10. Thanks for all the above info on AOL & helping me decide against it. Claudia November 30, 2003

  11. Matt Burris

    Glad it could help you, Claudia. :)

  12. Anonymous

    hey i say that i aol 9.0 can go t hell should burn i hope the compay files for bankrups now that i would love to see. 1995 they should of gone to hell than :)



  14. Anonymous

    Please, AOL 9.0 is the Bomb! It is better than any other ISP. It is top of the Line! You can not get any better. AOl’s Features surpass that of any other provider. The AOL 9.0 Optimized HighSpeed is better than any other High Speed Because it has not only excluse content and free firewall but it also has MSL(Multiple simultaneous Logons) where all 7 screen names can be signed on at the very same time. AOL 9.0 is the only service that allows that. No need for extra Web conferencing software, do it all through your IM’s on AOL 9.0. AOL can not help some computers may not be compatible and does not have enogh memory which would make some computers run slow! Get a decent computer and at that time then update!

  15. Matt Burris

    To the above poster:

    Wow, where to begin. First off, your comment on me getting a decent computer, makes me think you haven’t check the Geek page of this site. There you’ll see the specs of my computer, which is pretty top of the line. I can play the most intensive PC games out there at the highest quality and not have my computer break a sweat, and you want me to believe that AOL requires more power?

    AOL 9.0 Optimized was installed on a stock Windows XP Professional installation, on a fresh reformat. My computer is highly stable, it can run on 100% CPU cycles for hours on end without a single crash or BSOD. It runs at a steady temperature of 31 degrees Celsius, so it’s not even a heat problem.

    Face the facts, AOL is a bloated piece of software that is forcing a lot of consumers to a gradually degrading experience of the internet. For example, my grandmother who uses AOL, is daily forced to see spams of sexual nature, as well as other types. That’s embarassing, and pitiful. I used to get over 500 pieces of spam daily about a year ago, but email clients and anti-spam software has improved drastically. Using a combination of both Cloudmark’s SpamNet software and PopFile, I’ve cut my spam from over 500 a day to just 2 a day. I hardly ever see spam in my inbox anymore. AOL is still stuck in the stone age, and that is one VERY big flaw, if you ask me.

    Not to mention they have too many eggs in one basket, where most local dialup numbers are flooded with too many connections, forcing a lot of disconnections, and bad to horrible download speeds. Most other ISPs don’t have this problem, because they don’t spam the world with CD’s in their mailbox every month

    The features you listed are all pointless, considering the majority of other ISPs out there offer similar or better features. The ability to sign on to multiple accounts is stupid, to say the least. With a Cable or DSL modem, you can have way more than 7 people all connected to the internet at the same time. In fact, you can have over 100. Businesses have done that for years, AOL, like I said, is still stuck in the Stone Age when it comes to the internet and “features”. I’ve been on numerous different ISPs, from AOL, Earthlink, to dozens of local ISPs, and AOL is always at the bottom rung of the ladder.

    My advice to you, is do some research, check out other ISPs, open your eyes to the world and the internet, and you’ll realize just how much you’ve been missing.

  16. Anonymous

    you got that right i had it with aol as they sucks even with the optimized 9.0 was the worse ever that ever got into .it keeps shuting downand had to keep rebooting ,so finanly ihad just had it and quit the f####king aol for good and to let you know that MSN is the better one to get into .

  17. beck

    Thanks Matt, I was about to download 9.0 Optimized for my folks but decided against it after reading all the negative posts.
    Thanks again!

  18. chris

    i just spent over 3 hours installing 9.0, and when it was finally done and i tried to sign on, i kept getting the error message that the number was out of order. i could not access any of the available numbers to connect. thank god it uninstalls in less than 3 minutes!! my advice to you/everyone is DON’T DO IT!!!!!!!!!!!

  19. Davey

    Well After usinf AOL 9.0 for about a month I kept seeing my performance come to almost a screching halt. Why? Because 9.0 takes over your whole computer. It changed registries, Internet options, and virus protection? HA! 15 years on line and never a problem. AOL 9.0 and I picked up a trojan worm and ended up have to do a complete reinstall on XP. This is of course AOL anti Virus check gave me a clean Bill of Health. BEWARE OF 9.0 It SUCKS SUCKS SUCKS!!!!

    Since I dont have DSL in my area, I degraded back to 7.0 which sucks, but not as much. I HATE AOL!

  20. philip joseph

    i would like to reinstall aol 9.0

  21. Matt Burris

    Philip: Just reinsert the AOL CD into your drive, and follow directions.

  22. Nicole938

    I, against my better judgement, installed AOL 9.0 and I must agree with the majority it’s horrible. It really does worm it’s way into your computer. And talk about slow…. In conclusion AOL sux and everyone affiliated with AOL should be shot.

  23. Anonymous

    What were you AOL guys thinking? I was doing just fine with 8.0 then ya’all came up with your 9.0 version. Sometimes it takes up to 15 minutes to just get on AOL & I have a computer which is less than a year old. Once I get on, it keeps knocking me off. I seem to be able to get on much faster during off hours which tells me that the software works ok, but you don’t have enough extension cords plugged into the Machine to keep up with high traffic — or even medium traffic. That is something you can do something about and considering how expensive AOL service is you should do something about it before you lose all your customers. Apparently you are putting short term (money) gain above providing the expected service

  24. Anonymous

    i guess i wont be using 9.0 thank you for your thoughts on it and spending time to help other people know about it

  25. Anonymous

    well, at first i had CompuServe. it kept disconnecting me, so i aksed my mom to get AOL 9.0 i tried installing the CD for about 2 and a half hours. Then after that it wouldn’t let me connect with any of the numbers.

  26. Anonymous

    how do i go about installing AOL 9.0 ? can someone please tell me !!!

  27. Vanessa

    help me please and let me know something!!!!!!!!!

  28. Cindy

    Vanessa, don’t waste your time. AOL is nothing but a major market money stealing machine. There is nothing that AOL can offer you that you can’t find through another ISP. AOL has the pretty colors, and the “user-friendly” interface, or so they want you to think. What you end up getting though is a $23.90 charge to your bank account each month and major migraine.

    AOL used to be half way decent, but with all the other ISP’s out there they just seem to lack in comparison these days.

    Look, you’re already frustrated with them, and you haven’t even gotten them installed. That should be your first clue. If the program you want to use is giving you crap on install, what do you think it’s going to do when you actually get it running?

    Take my advice. Take the advice of so many others. Take that free disc that you got in the mail, and add it to the mountain of other AOL discs at your local land fill. You deserve better. ;)

  29. your internet service is off the mug, and if anyone don’t like what I said then they can e’mail me and I’ll give you a piece of my mine.

  30. Anonymous

    …same here for the dreaded AOL 9.0 optimized. I decided to give it a try before reading the posts…boy, what a mistake. What caught my eye was the CD case statement re “no credit card required”…I got through the entire load process, 4 reboots later, to find out you “DO” need a credit card. Took an hour to delete all the AOL crap off my PC after that. AOL can go to hell and I’ll stay on my local ISP. Cheers

  31. deonne

    yes, they will tell you it’s the computer but uninstalling aol 9.0 and putting back aol 8.0 will make it work…so, it’s always the computer, huh???

  32. Dale

    I’ve spent many hours testing and trying to understand aol 9.0 and it is just ugly. I vowed never to use aol again back 1990. Now I remember why!

  33. Anonymous

    i hate 9.0 and so dose my kids and they dont even like the red so i am with all the rest of the people at the top thankx

  34. Jake

    A suggestion for all you unhappy campers out there who are frustrated with AOL; LEARN about software incompatibility issues. While it is true that AOL is hugh as a software package, it is just as true that if your going to be able to run it smoothly on your machine then you will need to know what other software programs to run and not to run on your computer. Conflicts between software programs are not unheard events.
    That includes spy programs, firewalls, and even operating systems that require service packs, patches, hotfixes and the like. Let’s not forget also that Microsoft, which is the operating system most widely used with AOL software has thousands of compatibility issues with all sorts of programs, vendors, devices, and manufacturers.
    So, before badmouthing a product; do your research.

  35. Sorry Jake, sounds like you’re the one that needs to do research, or at least stop listening to people who don’t know what they’re talking about. AOL is a contained software, it installs everything that is needed for it to run properly. Conflicts? True, a firewall can cause a conflict, but anyone who knows how to run a firewall or even a proxy is smart enough to avoid AOL like the plague.

    Anti-spyware programs will have no effect on AOL, unless I’m unaware of AOL now serving up spyware that is tied into the program. As for operating systems, AOL internal mechanism detects what OS you’re running, and determines whether everything is there in order for it to install. If the OS is the problem, that is AOL’s problem, not the user’s.

    You said:
    “Let’s not forget also that Microsoft, which is the operating system most widely used with AOL software”

    That statement right there tells me right away you don’t have a clue of what you’re talking about. Microsoft is a company, not an operating system. You really should take your own advice, practice what your preach — YOU do research. Please.

  36. I’m having a lot of Problem’s with 9.0 Optimized!
    I was able to get Online, yesterday Morning,but Last night, and all day,today,I couldn’t get on!!
    They told me to Un-Install 9.0, and Install 8.0–
    again!!! They told me to use KEYWORD: 9.0, and they would Install it for me. I’ve been waiting for 2 hour’s,and I don’t have it, yet!!They sure are “Giving me Second Thought’s” about AOL Maddy

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