I have a Dell pc with P4, and with built in modem, and an account with AOL. I want to upgrade to broadband and it appears AOL would be the simplest way to go, except I'm worried about compatibility with Windows XP/ built in modems/ and their firewalls. Anybody any experience to allay these fears or confirm the worst?
Quite a few of us happily using AOL Broadband. The usual way is an external 'modem', which they will send you. It plugs into a USB (don't have anything using the 2nd port on the hub, the modem needs all the power).
I have looked at a few alternatives, PIPEX and Metronet being the 2 main ones. If I don't go to AOL what's the procedure for changing ie. do AOL need a months notice, and if so when do I contact another isp, straightaway or say week before AOL termination?
You need to look at your AOL agreement to see what notice they require. In the meantime, e-mail your other contenders, and ask how much notice they need to setup a new account, bearing in mind, BT also need time to enable ADSL on your telephone line.
As a safety device, you could also setup a "Pay as you go" account with someone like Freeserve, so that if there is a delay between the changeover, you still have internet access.
I recently changed from AOL dialup to Pipex BB. There is no problems whatsoever and AOL can still be used through the Pipex connection. Since I have a 12 month contract with AOL, this is what I am doing until the contract runs out. I was connected via pipex in less than two weeks and have had no conflicts or problems. AOL do require at least a months notice to terminate the contract.
I'll have to enquire about my AOL package. It came as a 3 month trial with the computer and I've continued it since. Not sure if it is monthly or yearly, but I certainly didn't agree terms to the best of my knowledge.
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