Posted 18 June 2005 - 10:23 AM
The way to tell whether it is the wireless/router or AOL would be to spend some time with it just directly plugged in to the AOL 'modem' via ethernet or ethernet plugged into a port on the router. If it's AOL then I can't help you except to say call them up and try and demand some service; perhaps the modem needs replacing?
On the other hand, if it's the wireless then one thing to try that I have found will prevent random drops from the router is to have your router assign your laptop a fixed IP address and not a DHCP assigned one. This should be configurable from the router's administrative console. They vary a bit from mfgr to mfgr but the essence is to plug your computer directly in to the router (ie. don't try and configure it via wireless) and direct your browser to the IP address for the router (typically 192.168.0.1 or 192.168.1.1). You will be prompted for a name (Administrator or Admin) and a password. This should really be covered in the booklet that came with the router or worst case can be downloaded from your router's mfgr homepage at supporting documents. In any event, the gist is to get into the Administrative console and go to where your laptop is identified by MAC address, computer name and IP address. Chances are the IP is being assigned via DHCP and you can change that and re-assign the laptop the same IP address if you want but based on MAC or name.