The general opinion on this forum for AOL seems to be that it's best to use their support for their software. You pay for it by your membership fee, don't you.

Some remarks:
- Maybe the optimized version is optimized for XP and pessimized, so to say, for Windows 98?
- Generally, if things get worse with a new version, consider going back to the old version.
- Extrac32 seems to be a Windows program; see if you can find it anywhere on the hard disk (if it doesn't exist, that's a very good reason for a load error)
- Try uninstalling, then reinstalling this version of AOL programs to see if that helps. That might be better than a "fix" that doesn't work.
- Disconnecting need not be a problem with this program, but also with the modem or the telephone line. Does the modem log offer any clues?
- Sure you don't have any viruses or spyware? See for some software to detect it. Useful in its own right, of course.

Hope this helps,