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AOL Hourglass I have a fairly new e-machines desktop running XP, with 256 MB of RAM. I have a serious problem with the performance of AOL version 9, security edition, dialup access. I have tried all the standard remedies- reloading AOL, turning off virus checking, turning off firewall protection (have turned it all back on), running a couple of spyware detectors, etc. Nothing works, and the helpers at AOL are useless- all they do is read from some database, and usually know nothing about computers. Here is the problem- I call it the "hourglass problem". In certain circumstances, the cursor turns to a large hourglass (not the animated small flying windows variety) and the entire system hangs up for at least six minutes. I can't get the task manager to show up, or anything else. Even the clock stops! The only power I have is to shut down the machine, or terminate AOL by mousing the X in the upper right corner. When I bring up the task manager before bringing up the AOL software, thinking that I will catch what causes the hourglass problem, I see no change in the list of tasks. The Task Manager is alive, since I see it update occasionally. I always get the hourglass problem once in every session, in different circumstances. The circumstances of the appearance of the hourglass are: 1) Most commonly, about a minute after I have logged on to AOL, upon the first access of a web page after the initial minute. That is, sometimes I can access a web page without this interference, if I work fast enough. 2) Infrequently, even before I have connected to AOL, after I have brought up the AOL software. This means that I can't even log on! I don't have this problem with any other application- I run many different ones. The machine performs very well, as long as I don't run AOL. Also, many times after I run AOL, even though I have logged out successfully, and the AOL window disappears, I can't run anything at all. My desktop appears OK, but I can't bring up the task manager, IE, Word, or even AOL itself. The clock reports correctly, though. Sometimes, if I wait about ten minutes, I can run applications normally. Sometimes, I have to reboot. Most of the time, this phenomenon doesn't happen.

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  • Marvin Walden Sep 11, 2007

    HERE IS A REVISION OF THE ABOVE, GIVING MORE INFO:

    I have a fairly new e-machines desktop running XP, with 256 MB of RAM. I have a serious problem with the performance of AOL version 9.0 Security Edition, Rev 4184.5374, dialup access. I have tried all the standard remedies- reloading AOL, turning off virus checking, turning off firewall protection, running a couple of spyware detectors, etc. Nothing works, and the helpers at AOL are useless- all they do is read from some database, and usually know nothing about computers.

    Here is the problem- I call it the "hourglass problem". In certain circumstances, the cursor turns to a large hourglass (not the animated small flying windows variety) and the entire system hangs up for at least six minutes. I can't get the task manager to show up, or anything else. Even the clock stops! The only power I have is to shut down the machine, or terminate AOL by mousing the X in the upper right corner, which doesn't help anything. When I bring up the task manager before bringing up the AOL software, thinking that I will catch what causes the hourglass problem, I see no change in the list of tasks. The Task Manager is alive, since I see it update occasionally.

    I always get the hourglass problem once in every session, in different circumstances.

    The circumstances of the appearance of the hourglass are:
    1) Most commonly, about a minute after I have logged on to AOL, upon the first access of a web page after the initial minute. That is, sometimes I can access a web page without this interference, if I work fast enough.
    2) Infrequently, even before I have connected to AOL, after I have brought up the AOL software. This means that I can't even log on!

    I don't have this problem with any other application- I run many different ones. The machine performs very well, as long as I don't run AOL.

    Also, many times after I run AOL, even though I have logged out successfully, and the AOL window disappears, I can't run anything at all. My desktop appears OK, but I can't bring up the task manager, IE, Word, or even AOL itself. The clock reports correctly, though. Sometimes, if I wait about ten minutes, I can run applications normally. Sometimes, I have to reboot. Most of the time, this phenomenon doesn't happen.

    I have disabled firewalls and virus checking. When I invoke the Task Manager before starting AOL, so that I can bring it up when I get an hourglass, Task Manager shows no additional tasks on the event of an hourglass. In fact, Task manager shows nothing that is a problem. Minimum CPU activity- 0:00:04, memory not excessive- 52,956K, page faults minimal- 0, VM Size- 36,796K. Commit charge 238 MB is fine (without anti-virus and firewall).

    So it has to be something in AOL that is causing the problem.

    Will AOL admit to that? Have they ever?

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Download and install "Registry Mechanic" then do the updates prior to running it and removing anything for the first time. This will get rid of all your current Registry errors.

Try AOL again.

 

If AOL is still not working...

Un-install AOL.

Shut down completely for at lest 30 seconds, then restart.

Then do a search for all AOL files and folders with the options "Search system folders", "Search hidden files and folders" and "Search subfolders" checked. Delete all of those found.

Restart then run Registry Mechanic again.

Shutdown restart.

Reinstall AOL.

Posted on Oct 15, 2007

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