Older versions of AOL Desktop software are being discontinued. If you're an active user of AOL Desktop software, you should receive an email from AOL about the changes and recommendations for continuing to access your favorite AOL services, and when access to your older AOL Desktop software will no longer be available.

If you didn't receive an email or are looking for more help with this transition, review the information below to learn about options for continuing to access your favorite AOL products and services that work with the operating system and internet connection speed you have.

AOL US customers

Using Windows 7 or higher and high-speed internet

Consider upgrading to AOL Desktop Gold if you use a newer Windows operating system (Windows 7 and higher) and have a high-speed internet connection. Desktop Gold is included free in all AOL Advantage plans. If you don't have an AOL Advantage plan, you can purchase an AOL Desktop Gold subscription.

Get help with downloading and installing AOL Desktop Gold.

Using Windows XP or Windows Vista and dial-up internet

If you use a Windows operating system older than Windows 7, like Windows XP or Windows Vista, and access the internet through your telephone line (dial-up internet), we recommend installing AOL Dialer and AOL Shield to continue accessing your AOL services and to avoid losing internet access. If you use 1-800 dial-up number to connect to the internet, please see the section titled "Using a Windows operating system and a rural 1-800 dial-up number" for important dial-up information.

If you use Windows XP or Windows Vista and have a high-speed internet connection, use AOL Shield only. Please see the section titled "Using Windows XP or Windows Vista and high-speed internet" for more information.

A CD with AOL Dialer and AOL Shield installation files was mailed to most customers who have dial-up internet connections. If you don't receive a CD, or want to install AOL Dialer and AOL Shield before you receive the CD, you can download these applications and install them now.

Download AOL Dialer
Download AOL Shield

Need help with installing and using AOL Dialer and AOL Shield?

Get help with AOL Dialer
Get help with AOL Shield

Using Windows XP or Windows Vista and high-speed internet

If you use a Windows operating system older than Windows 7, like Windows XP or Windows Vista, and have a high-speed internet connection, we recommend using AOL Shield, a browser optimized for older operating systems.

Download and get help with AOL Shield.

Using a Windows operating system and a 1-800 dial-up number

If you use a 1-800 dial-up phone number to connect to the internet, we recommend downloading and installing AOL Dialer and AOL Shield to continue accessing your AOL services and to avoid losing internet access.

When using AOL Dialer and choosing a number to connect to, you'll need to:

1. Enter the 877 area code.
2. Select Temp_toll_free, TX 1-877-492-8153

Note: This is a change from the previous 1-800 number you used with your older version of AOL Desktop. Please choose the new number listed above to continue accessing dial-up internet.

A CD with AOL Dialer and AOL Shield installation files was mailed to most customers who have dial-up internet connections. If you don't receive a CD, or want to install AOL Dialer and AOL Shield before you receive the CD, you can download these applications and install them now.

Download AOL Dialer
Download AOL Shield

Need help with installing and using AOL Dialer and AOL Shield?

Get help with AOL Dialer
Get help with AOL Shield

Using Mac OSX or other Mac operating systems

AOL Desktop Gold is not compatible with Mac operating systems. If you're using a Mac, you can continue to access AOL Mail using a web browser like Chrome, Safari, or Firefox.

1. Open your web browser.
2. Go to mail.aol.com.
3. Sign in to your account.

Get help with using AOL Mail.

Other options for accessing AOL Mail

If you don't wish to use the recommended option for your operating system and internet connection, you can continue accessing AOL Mail in other ways.

Access AOL Mail using AOL Shield Pro (compatible with Windows 7 and higher)

AOL Shield Pro is a browser that gives you easy access to your AOL Mail, contacts, the latest news, and more.

Download AOL Shield Pro
Get help with AOL Shield Pro

Access AOL Mail using another web browser

If you have a web browser installed on your computer, like Internet Explorer, Firefox, or Chrome, it's easy to access AOL Mail.

1. Open your web browser.
2. Go to mail.aol.com.
3. Sign in to your account.

Get help with using AOL Mail.

Access AOL Mail using the AOL mobile app

The AOL app can be installed on most mobile devices, including mobile phones and tablets. Download and install the app, then access AOL Mail using the instructions below.

1. Open the AOL app.
2. Tap the Mail icon.
3. Sign in to your account.

Get help with the AOL app.

AOL Canada customers

Using Windows 7 or higher and high-speed internet

Consider upgrading to AOL Desktop Gold if you use a newer Windows operating system (Windows 7 and higher) and have a high-speed internet connection. This option is available only for AOL paid customers.

Get help with downloading and installing AOL Desktop Gold.

Using Windows XP or Windows Vista and dial-up internet

If you use an older Windows operating system like Windows XP or Windows Vista, and access the internet through your telephone line (dial-up internet), we recommend installing AOL Dialer and AOL Shield to continue accessing your AOL services and to avoid losing internet access.

If you use Windows XP or Windows Vista and have a high-speed internet connection, use AOL Shield only. Please see the section titled "Using Windows XP or Windows Vista and high-speed internet" for more information.

A CD with AOL Dialer and AOL Shield installation files was mailed to most customers who have dial-up internet connections. If you don't receive a CD, or want to install AOL Dialer and AOL Shield before you receive the CD, you can download these applications and install them now.

Download AOL Dialer
Download AOL Shield

Need help with installing and using AOL Dialer and AOL Shield?

Get help with AOL Dialer
Get help with AOL Shield

Using Windows XP or Windows Vista and high-speed internet

If you use a Windows operating system older than Windows 7, like Windows XP or Windows Vista, and have a high-speed internet connection, we recommend using AOL Shield, a browser optimized for older operating systems.

Download AOL Shield
Get help with AOL Shield

Using Mac OSX or other Mac operating system

AOL Desktop Gold is not compatible with Mac operating systems. If you're using a Mac, you can continue to access your AOL Mail using a web browser like Safari, Firefox, or Chrome at mail.aol.ca.

Other options for accessing AOL Mail

If you don't wish to use the recommended option for your operating system and internet connection, you can continue accessing AOL Mail in other ways.

Access AOL Mail using another web browser

If you have a web browser installed on your computer, like Internet Explorer, Firefox, or Chrome, it's easy to access AOL Mail.

1. Open your web browser.
2. Go to mail.aol.ca.
3. Sign in to your account.

Get help with using AOL Mail.

Access AOL Mail using the AOL mobile app

The AOL app can be installed on most mobile devices, including mobile phones and tablets. Download and install the app, then access AOL Mail using the instructions below.

1. Open the AOL app.
2. Tap the Mail icon.
3. Sign in to your account.

Get help with the AOL app.

Answers to common questions

Will I lose my old emails?

No. Your existing email messages will remain available if you transition to using one of the recommended options for your operating system and internet connection speed, or if you decide to access AOL Mail using the AOL app or via the web using a browser.

Will I lose my contacts?

No. Your contacts will remain available if you transition to using one of the recommended options for your operating system and internet connection speed, or if you decide to access AOL Mail using the AOL app or via the web using a browser.

Will AOL Desktop be uninstalled from my computer?

No. AOL Desktop won't be uninstalled unless you uninstall it, but you won't be able to access it after it's discontinued.

How do I uninstall an older version of AOL Desktop?

Follow the instructions below to uninstall an older version of AOL Desktop from your computer:

  1. Open the Start Menu and search for Control Panel. Click on it once it shows up.
  2. Click on Uninstall a program
  3. Look for AOL Uninstaller in the list that opens up. Right-click it and select Uninstall/Change.
  4. Follow the instructions in the AOL Uninstaller to complete your uninstallation.