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Q: AOL ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   3 Comments )
Subject: AOL
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: mdpa173-ga
List Price: $3.00
Posted: 21 Sep 2004 07:31 PDT
Expires: 21 Oct 2004 07:31 PDT
Question ID: 404178
Many people say AOL detracts from my online experience.  I have dsl
with AOL as my Broadband provider.  Bell South in Florida -Ft. laud.

Question -  can i bypass AOL to play online poker at,
or am i forced to use AOL by definition as it is my provider?

Request for Question Clarification by tar_heel_v-ga on 21 Sep 2004 12:03 PDT
You can find your answer here:

Clarification of Question by mdpa173-ga on 22 Sep 2004 06:20 PDT
thank you,  i will 20 tip if you can get a layman to understand what is going on?

i went to the link,  no good narrative though of the situation. i.e.:

1. since a.o.l. is my isp ( i pay them 20 for aol plus 30 for
broadband, using dsl line of my bellsouth fl line),  does that
basically mean i need to change i.s.p., fire them,  to get better
service - or is a.o.l. just as good as anyone in terms of who i pay my
money to monthly?    in other words if i get online without a.o.l.
software being open, am i still 'using' a.o.l. since they are my i.s.
p. anyways?

2. the link was very techical but i couldn't find the problem which
that link was trying to fix - i.e. was the person getting periodically
knocked off like i am.

3.  my basic problem is that i play 3 separate simultaneous games of
online poker,  much clicking, much movement (simple graphics though,
not really animated).  so if i get bumped off once a day for 45
seconds it still is a major problem to me.

Request for Question Clarification by tar_heel_v-ga on 22 Sep 2004 07:16 PDT

Let's look at your questions:

1.  Using PPPoE, you are still using AOL as your provider, yet you are
not using the AOL interface, you would be using another browser for
your gaming, such as Internet Expolorer.

2.  The link shows how to utilize AOL as your provider and not have to
use the AOL interface to access the net.  DSL is an always on
connection, so you should not be getting knocked off.  That is another
issue entirely.  From reading your question, I was under the
impression you were looking for a way to access the net via AOL but
not use the AOL front end interface.

Let me do some digging and see if I can find info on people getting
bumped from AOL DSL

Clarification of Question by mdpa173-ga on 22 Sep 2004 09:55 PDT
thanks.   the basic issue is what can i do to avoid getting bumped
off-line. so many people mention a.o.l. when the topic arises, that i
assumed that if there is nothing involving a.o.l. in my online
connection to, then it would at least rule out a.o.l.
as the culprit.

l.  if a.o.l is my online provider, am i avoiding anything a.o.l. even
if i do connect without using the a.o.l. software? i.e. what does it
actually mean if a.o.l. is my provider - am i using any a.o.l.
equipment outside of my computer?

2. do you think i need to switch to cable  versus d.s.l. -  i
understand it is faster, but is it also any more failsafe to avoid a

i appreciate your help,  i am definitely not much of a computer expert,

Request for Question Clarification by tar_heel_v-ga on 22 Sep 2004 11:18 PDT
Your internet connection, if you are using AOL Broadband, is provided
to you through AOL.  Now, with that being said, what do you do when
you access the internet?  Do you use the software AOL provided you? 
What I would recommend trying would be the step-by-step solution
outlined on,6332885~mode=flat
and access via Internet Explorer instead of the AOL
interface and see if the bumping continues.  DSL, by definition, is
always on and should not disconnect.  Sure, service may pop in and out
on occassion, but not on a continual basis.

As for switching from DSL to cable, that is a personal preference. 
Typically, cable is faster, but depending on where you live, may also
be more expensive.

Clarification of Question by mdpa173-ga on 23 Sep 2004 09:11 PDT
for tarheel -

i was able to get online with a.o.l. software closed.  my final
question - am i really completely avoiding a.o.l. this way, or are
they somehow involved in the connection, as a.o.l. is still my
broadband provider?

Request for Question Clarification by tar_heel_v-ga on 23 Sep 2004 09:32 PDT
AOL is still your provider for internet access.  As an example, let's
say that you were using Time Warner's Roadrunner cable service.  Even
though you aren't using a particular piece of software from TWC to
access the internet, they are providing your access TO the internet. 
Your situation is the same with AOL.  Even though you aren't using the
AOL software, they are still providing your access, which is what you
pay for.

I am glad you got taken care of.  Anything else, please let me know.


Clarification of Question by mdpa173-ga on 30 Sep 2004 07:37 PDT
thank you,  i accept the answer as xclent,  will tip as promised.

what does aol is my 'service provider' actually mean.  do my signals
go thru an a.o.l. server,  or do the signals use a.o.l. specific
telephone lines,or is it just a financial arrangement and the signals
on the dsl all follow the same path despite the name of my specific
Subject: Re: AOL
Answered By: tar_heel_v-ga on 01 Oct 2004 05:56 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars

I am glad that through our discussions you have been able to get
online to your satisfaction.  To respond to your inquiry regarding how
AOL fits into your access, yes, your internet connection goes through
AOL servers,  though the physical connection is not owned by AOL (they
contract the actual line usage out to local phone and cable
companies).  When you are connected, however, the router (the box that
sits between your computer and the connection from the wall) is
configured to to send your signals through AOL's network of routers,
which are the "traffic contollers" for the internet.  When you send
data to or receive data from the internet, you are using AOL's network
of connections.  In other words, the first stop your data has before
it goes to the internet is AOL and the last stop for the data before
it reaches your PC is AOL.  Another example would be if you wanted to
connect to Google, you would type and then hit "go" on
your browser.  When you hit go, the first place that signal goes is
through a router that is controlled by AOL.  From that point,
depending on how the router is configured, the signal you sent bounces
around other routers that make up the internet.  Eventually, it hits a
router that sends the signal to Google.  Then, the computers at Google
send the signal back.  The first place the signal hits when it leaves
Google is a router controlled by Google. It bounces around other
routers (not controlled by Google or AOL) until it reaches AOL
controlled lines, then back to you.  A great place to learn how the
internet works can be found at:

I know it is confusing, but rest assured, if you are paying AOL money
for acess each month, you are using AOL lines at some point.


Request for Answer Clarification by mdpa173-ga on 01 Oct 2004 06:20 PDT
in your opinion,  if aol is my provider, but i access the internet
thru internet explorer, with my aol software closed, is my dsl
connection any more ore less likely to get knocked off than if i am
using a non -aol isp.


Clarification of Answer by tar_heel_v-ga on 01 Oct 2004 07:36 PDT
Thank you for the high rating and generous tip.  I am glad I could help.


Clarification of Answer by tar_heel_v-ga on 01 Oct 2004 07:37 PDT
I don't think you are more or less likely to be knocked off using AOL
DSL than you would be using any other DSL provider.
mdpa173-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $20.00

Subject: Re: AOL
From: kerplode-ga on 21 Sep 2004 10:05 PDT
I'm not quite sure how AOL's DSL works, or even if this will answer
your question, but I used to have AOL as a dial up provider.  I would
dial-up using AOL, close all of the windows I could w/o disconnecting,
minimize AOL and start up Internet Explorer.  I wouldn't see why you
couldn't do the same with AOL DSL.

I always hated how little of the screen you actually see with AOL's
banners and such.
Subject: Re: AOL
From: cscguy-ga on 21 Sep 2004 13:56 PDT
The AOL software has two main ways to connect to the service. The
first way, is utilizing ppp to create a dialup connection and once
connected you utilize the tcp/ip protocol to access AOL services and
regular internet based services. The second way is to have an already
existing connection, such as Cable or DSL and to utilize the tcp/ip
protocol of that already existing connection to utilize AOL services
or already existing web based services. Hence, if you are using DSL to
connect to the AOL services, chances are you can connect to the DSL
internet independently of the AOL service. You essentially are using
the AOL software as an "Extra" layer on top of what the DSL service
already provides to you. Hopefully this helps.
Subject: Re: AOL
From: protheus99-ga on 07 Feb 2005 10:59 PST
AOL users can play and poker

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