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Why Can't I See The Changes On This Website? (The AOL Page Refresh Problem)

There is nothing wrong with this website. The changes have likely been made already and are in fact live and viewable on the internet by everyone.

What Gives?  Often internet service providers (ISPs) try to artificially speed up their internet connections by preventing your browser from downloading the most recent version of a web page when you view it. Instead, the ISP, or the browser itself, shows you the previous version of the web page, which is stored on your own hard drive (or the ISPs own server computer). This way, your internet connection appears to be faster (even though it is not) because you are not downloading any new files. AOL is one of the worst offenders.

When this happens, there is nothing this site (or any other website owner) can do to remedy the problem. However, if you follow these simple steps, usually you can work around the problem. Stop once one of these steps works for you:

  1. If possible, view the page in something other than the AOL browser (preferably Internet Explorer or Firefox). You really will be happier in the long run.
  2. While viewing the page, hit the refresh button on your browser (or hit the F5 key or Ctrl+R).
  3. If the above doesn't work (especially in AOL), hold down the CONTROL [Ctrl] key while hitting the refresh button on your browser (or hit the F5 key).
  4. If the above doesn't work, then disconnect from the internet. Restart your internet browser, and then delete your temporary internet files (cache). If you are not sure how to do this, please follow one of these steps:
    • For Internet Explorer 7: Select TOOLS > INTERNET OPTIONS, then under browsing history, click DELETE… Under Temporary Internet Files, cick DELETE FILES… and then YES.
    • For FireFox: Select TOOLS > CLEAR PRIVATE DATA. Then check Browsing History and Cache, and then click CLEAR PRIVATE DATA NOW.
    • For Safari: Select EDIT > EMPTY CACHE… > EMPTY.
  5. Log Back onto the net and complete steps 1-3 again.
  6. If the above does not work, then [temporarily] disable any web accelerator software provided by your ISP. You will have to check with your ISP to find out how to do this. Then repeat steps 1-5.
  7. If none of these steps work, you may need to wait 24-48 hours for your ISP to refresh the cache on their own web server. Try again later.

In general, we do not recommend that you use AOL's browser solely to view the web. In our opinion - it's not the best choice out there... the word horrible comes to mind. It is actually based on a stripped-down version of Internet Explorer, with many of the options and features removed. You can install one of the other popular browsers such as Internet Explorer or Firefox and still use it in tandem with AOL.

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