First, because you mention AOL, is this on a dial-up connection or broadband? Your other printer question which referred to wireless made it appear like you're using broadband. If using broadband connection can you still using Internet Explorer when not using AOL...In other words, can you simply double click on the Internet Explorer icon (the blue "e" on the desktop) and will it connect correctly?
Because this issue and your other problems could be related to malware, if you haven't already, please download, install, update, then run the free spyware removal tools from the links below:
I updated AOL about 6 months ago and since then, IE will no longer load or refresh if I am connected on AOL.
Windows XP Pro
Thanks in advance.