I'm no fan of AOL either. They just put a pretty face on a browser. Their content is less of a value-add then years ago.
I would disagree on the software vs hardware firewall tho. I would still recommend running both. Hardware routers only control what ports are available on the public and private side. Since every router lets the web port 80 available, lots of malware sneaks by the firewall. Software firewalls can monitor what programs are trying to access a specific port. It's not uncommon for a Trojan to slip by the router and then get caught by the software firewall when it tries to talk back from the PC.
Anti virus, Anti spyware, HW and SW firewalls, running, patched, and updated at all times. The zero-day explot is upon us.
The bad guys now how to get past the common safeguards so you cant be too careful.