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- Computing 101
You may be experiencing problems lately signing in to your AOL e-mail account, AIM, or AOL in general. You are not alone. And fortunately, there are several simple, do-it-yourself ways to troubleshoot. So let’s look at a couple of the common reasons why signing in is a problem.
Cookies, Cache, and Temporary Files
Sometimes your Internet history, a collection of cookies and files you have from web sites you’ve visited, are enough to bog down your system and create problems. Try clearing these files and logging in again. To clear your cookies and temporary files:
1) Click on the Tools link in Internet Explorer.
2) Open Internet Options and then click on the General tab.
3) Click Delete Files and then OK.
In the same screen you can delete your Internet history as well. Just click Clear History and then OK.
Another common cause of problems logging in involves security settings on your PC. AOL Webmail needs your Internet Explorer settings to be set to Default in order for everything to function properly. To check or change your settings:
1) Open Internet Explorer and go to the Tools menu.
2) Select Internet Options and then click on the Security tab.
3) Under the section named “Security level for this zone,” click on the Default Level button.
4) Click OK.
Check for Updates
Your PC may be missing an important update that is preventing it from accessing your AOL accounts. You can review new downloads available by visiting AOL’s web site and checking out the Downloads page. Here you can find important downloads as well as a few new bells and whistles like apps for the iPhone.
There is always the possibility that your desktop software became corrupt. To fix this, we recommend uninstalling and reinstalling AOL. To uninstall:
1) Go to your Start menu and click on Control Panel (or Programs and Features in Vista)
2) Double click on Add or Remove Programs.
3) Here you will find the AOL Uninstaller. Click on the program you want to uninstall and then click Change/Remove followed by the Yes button.
4) Click in the checkbox next to AOL Desktop.
5) Click Uninstall.
6) Click Yes, then OK. And close out of the Control Panel.
To reinstall AOL Desktop Software, you can go about it in two ways. One, you can use your AOL CD to reinstall your original version. Or you can utilize the installation file on your PC that will reinstall the last version of AOL that you had.
To install using the file aolback.exe:
1) Click on your Start menu and then open Search (or Find for Windows 98).
2) Click on Files and/or Folders.
3) Type in “aolback.exe” and focus the search on your C:\ drive.
4) Once your PC finds the file, double click on it and follow the installation instructions.
If your aolback.exe file is not found, visit AOL’s downloads page and there you can download the latest version.