MessengerSays Blog is no longer active

Hi everyone,

Did you notice? We haven’t posted anything new here for awhile. We’ve officially stopped maintaining this blog.

If you need technical help with anything from Windows Live, try the Windows Live Solution Center.

To get the inside story from the people who build Windows Live, check out the Inside Windows Live blog, where Windows Live engineers and executives blog about all the Windows Live services, how they’re built, and how we decide what to add or improve as we build the latest new features.

There is a great blog post there about the upcoming version of Messenger (link).

For tips and updates about cool things you can do with Windows Live, check out the Hotmail and Messenger pages on Facebook. You can also follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/windowslive. Thanks for all your support and see you on the new Inside Windows Live blog!

The Windows Live team

Health Tech Today show premiere, powered by Windows Live Messenger

Today marks the premiere of a new program named Health Tech Today, which features informative interviews with some of the world’s top health leaders; compelling health-related personal stories; and the latest new technology and IT innovations.  The show is hosted by Dr. Bill Crounse and the premiere episode features an interview with eHealth adovcate, Nobel Peace Prize winner, Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

Here is the complete list of guests from the first episode.

  • Archbishop Desmond Tutu – eHealth & human rights advocate, South Africa
  • Dr. Kim Pittenger – MD, Medical Director, Virginia Mason, Kirkland, WA
  • Don Detmer – MD, MA, Professor of Medical Education, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA
  • Andrew Cull – CEO, Remote Medical International
  • Cornelia Ruland – PhD, Center for Shared Decision Making & Nursing Research, Oslo, Norway
  • Chris Otto – CEO & Founder, Halo Monitoring


So what does this have to do with Messenger and why are we writing about it on the MessengerSays blog?

Besides being a great show on a topic that many of us feel passionate about, we’re happy to say that Windows Live Messenger was used to conduct all of the remote video interviews.  A few weeks prior to the recording of the first episode we were approached by the producers asking if we thought the Messenger video call functionality would work for the live interviews they wanted to conduct with guests from all around the world.  We said ‘of course’ and after a quick discussion it was clear that Messenger would indeed meet all their needs.

The producers explained to us that they would typically have to transport the guests to a studio and pay a hefty fee to setup a live satellite-link.  They were very excited at how simple it was to setup a video call and not only did they save money (free!), but the guests didn’t even have to leave their homes to do the interviews.

This was a great win-win situation for everyone (except maybe the satellite-link owners) and the team is looking forward to hearing about more instances where our technology was used to bring things like this together.

Check out the episode for yourself at http://www.microsoft.com/industry/healthcare/healthtechtoday 

Try a video call yourself!

Thanks,
Tolga & Lonn
Windows Live Messenger Team

Upgrade from Windows Live Messenger 8.5

In September, we began asking users on 8.1 clients to upgrade to the latest version of messenger to ensure that they had the most up to-date and secure release.  (see post)

Starting today, users on version 8.5 will also be required to upgrade before they can sign-in to the service.  Starting on the November 9th, users on Messenger 2009 (version 14) will need to upgrade their clients too.  Users who have already installed the latest version, which was released Aug 18th 2009 (Build: 14.0.8089.726),  will not be required to upgrade.

If you are using Messenger 2009 and are curious what version you have, you can go to the Help –> About Menu.

If you have any issues or questions during the upgrade process, here are the places you can go to get some answers.

Troubleshooting Login Issues

This post from the support team provides some guidance into how to determine what error you are getting and steps to resolve many of these.

Online Help

You can also try the online help pages.  On the left hand side, you can select ‘Table of Contents’ (near the bottom) and get information on troubleshooting and error codes.

Contact the Support Team

If you have already tried the going through the online help suggestions and still having difficulties then you should consider contacting the Messenger support team and providing them with more information about the problems that you are encountering.

 

Note: Users on Windows XP will need to ensure that they have installed Service Pack 2 (SP2) or higher, otherwise the upgrade will not work.  Instructions to install the latest Service Pack (SP3) can be found here.  Additionally, here is more information about the system requirements.

Thanks for everyone’s continued support.

Sincerely,
The Windows Live Messenger Team

Upgrade from Windows Live Messenger version 8.1

Over the past few weeks we have been asking customers using previous versions of Windows Live Messenger to upgrade to the latest version in order to ensure they had the most up-to-date and secure release.  If you’d like to learn more about this upgrade and why we’re doing this, please see the previous blog post, Upgrade Windows Live Messenger.

Starting today, if you are using version 8.1, you will be required to upgrade before you will be able to sign-in.  After upgrading you will be able to sign-in and if you’re interested in learning more about the new release, please visit the Windows Live Messenger information page.

We’ve seen comments from a few users stating that they have had some trouble signing-in after the upgrade and wanted to provide a few resources.  The following links can help you in case you’re having an issue.

Troubleshooting Login Issues

This post from the support team provides some guidance into how to determine what error you are getting and steps to resolve many of these.

Online Help

You can also try the online help pages.  On the left hand side, you can select ‘Table of Contents’ (near the bottom) and get information on troubleshooting and error codes.

Contact the Support Team

If you have already tried the going through the online help suggestions and still having difficulties then you should consider contacting the Messenger support team and providing them with more information about the problems that you are encountering.

 

Update: Users on Windows XP will need to ensure that they have installed Service Pack 2 (SP2) or higher, otherwise the upgrade will not work.  Instructions to install the latest Service Pack (SP3) can be found here.  Additionally, here is more information about the system requirements.

Thanks,
The Windows Live Messenger Team

Notice: Trouble sending messages.

We are currently experiencing technical issues that may cause you to have trouble sending IMs.  We are working quickly to fix this issue and apologize for the inconvenience.

-The Windows Live Messenger Team

Update: 3:10pm PST

We’ve fixed the issue and things are returning back to normal.  Thanks for your patience.

Upgrade your Windows Live Messenger Service

We are committed to providing a safe, secure and positive experience for our more than 300 million customers across the globe using Windows Live Messenger every month. To deliver on that commitment, beginning on August 25, we started asking our customers using versions 8.1, 8.5 and 14.0 to upgrade to the newest version of Messenger. The upgrade will provide customers with the latest software updates including code fixes and feature enhancements, as well address vulnerabilities discussed in the Microsoft Security Advisory 973882 that existed in previous versions of Windows Live Messenger.

The upgrade process will take place in a phased approach over the next several weeks:

First Phase, Optional Upgrade:
The optional upgrade will happen in two stages:
Starting Aug. 25, customers using versions 8.1 or 8.5 were asked to upgrade their client.
Starting early Oct., all customers using versions 14.0 (but not the latest release 14.0.8089) will be asked to upgrade their client.
The upgrade at this time is optional. Customers who haven’t upgraded during the optional phase will be required to do so during the second phase. 

Second Phase, Mandatory Upgrade:
The mandatory upgrade will happen in three stages:
Starting mid-Sept., all customers using Messenger 8.1 or 8.5 will be required to upgrade their version of Windows Live Messenger.
Starting late Oct., all customers using Messenger 14.0 will be required to upgrade their version of Windows Live Messenger.
To ensure that we are protecting customers, those who do not administer the upgrade will not be able to sign in to Messenger after this time.

Please Note: It will take several weeks for the upgrade process to be completed, as the upgrade will be rolled out to customers over the course of several weeks. 

Below are some examples of the prompts that you will encounter during the upgrade process. 

Notification to upgrade.

Want to upgrade now?  You don’t have to wait for the notification. In fact, we encourage you to download the updated version of Messenger right now by visiting http://download.live.com .

If you aren’t sure which version you have, you can go to the Help menu and select About Messenger.  Help –> About Messenger.  If you have a version that is lower than 14.0.8089 you will need to upgrade.

New Features and Improvements

There are a ton of great new features and improvements in the current version of Windows Live Messenger (14.0.8089) that we know you will be impressed with. In fact, Windows Live Messenger won both the Editor’s Choice distinction by PC Mag as well as a 2009 Webware 100 award from CNet honoring the people’s choice for the best Web 2.0 apps and services. Learn more about all the new features in Windows Live Messenger here.

Users upgrading from 14.0

Customers currently using Windows Live Messenger 14 are already enjoying the new features of the latest version of Window Live Messenger. We’re doing our best to minimize the impact this upgrade may have on our customers and apologize for any inconvenience it may cause.

To answer any questions you may have, we’ve provided a short FAQ about the upgrade process below.

Thanks,
The Windows Live Messenger Team

FAQ – Windows Live Messenger update

What are the changes with the new upgrade?
The changes vary depending on which version of Windows Live Messenger people currently have on their PC. The process will upgrade customers of Windows Live Messenger 8.1 or 8.5 to our latest version. Separately, customers who installed Windows Live Messenger client 14.0 before August 19, 2009 will receive a code fix, but there will be no visible feature changes. 

What is new in the latest version of Windows Live Messenger?
With the current version of Windows Live Messenger, several new, socially oriented features and an entirely new look and feel were introduced:
Personalization. Add a profile picture or video, display a personal scene in the chat window, update the status message with your news, add a favorite link, or add what song you’re listening to. 
Integration of “What’s New” feed. With the “What’s New” feed in Messenger, you can stay in touch with the latest updates from your circle of friends at a glance, without any need to log in across multiple destinations.
Photo sharing. Photo sharing lets you share and comment on pictures while you’re chatting.
Favorites. Identify your most important contacts and they will appear at the top of your Messenger window, for easy access. It’s like speed dial for your Messenger contacts.
Groups. Create groups on the fly and chat simultaneously with up to 20 members at the same time.              

Who will receive the upgrade notification?
All Windows Live Messenger clients with versions 8.1, 8.5 or 14.0 will receive the upgrade notification. Beginning August 25, customers of Messenger 8.1 or 8.5 were prompted to upgrade their client. Customers who installed the latest Windows Live Messenger client (14.0) before August 19, 2009 will start receiving an upgrade notification in September 2009. Customers of older versions of MSN Messenger on Windows 2000, Windows NT 4.0, Windows 95, Windows Me or Windows 98 will not receive an upgrade notification.

Update (Aug 28 6:30pm PST) 

Hi everyone, we’ve had several comments about what happens if you are running an operating system on which you cannot install the latest version of Messenger.  In this case, you will NOT be prompted to upgrade and can continue to use the version you currently have.

To clarify, if you are running Messenger 8.1, 8.5 or 14.0 on the following operating systems: Windows XP 32bit, Windows Vista (32bit/64bit), Windows 7( 32bit/64bit) or Windows Server 2008, you will receive the upgrade notice.  See this link for the system requirements of the latest version. http://download.live.com/SystemRequirements


Today is the 10th Anniversary – It’s time to party.

10 years ago today, MSN Messenger v1.0 was released to the world and users all around the world began downloading it via their 28.8/56.6k dial-up modems. :p.

Over the past few weeks we received an overwhelming number of fascinating stories from all of you on topics ranging from “How to propose using Messenger” to “How to use Messenger as a security camera”, all of which reminds us about why we love working on this product.

Windows Live Messenger is where it is today because of YOU, our users.  We couldn’t have done it without you and in return, we thought about hosting a party, but with 330 million of you to invite, I couldn’t convince any of the team members to hold it at their place. :)  Instead, you’ll have to settle for the next best thing… a homemade celebration video (nicely pasted to the left for your viewing pleasure).

Hope you enjoy it as much as we enjoyed making it.  Thank you for all your support over the past 10 years, and here’s to another 10! :)

 

After you’ve checked out the video, here are some things you can do to celebrate Messenger’s 10th anniversary with us:

  • Visit our Messenger anniversary celebration site in the US or in the UK and download a special anniversary gift pack with free themes and emoticons.
  • Send a Happy Anniversary IM to at least 10 of your friends and let them guess whose anniversary you’re celebrating (you can use a 10 Year Anniversary emoticon to make it a bit easier for them) 

Fun Fact – did you know that…

Messenger users come back to log-in to Windows Live Messenger on average 3 times a day. That is about as often as the average person would sit down to have a meal.

And when they log-in they send a *LOT* of messages to their friends and family! Let’s come back to our space travel example from yesterday:

People are trying to estimate how many stars we have in our galaxy, the Milky Way. The current estimate is approx 300 billion. For Messenger we don’t have to estimate, we have the numbers – could you have imagined that the average 9.4 billion messages that are sent per day add up to about 290 billion messages every month, which pretty much equals the estimated number of stars in our galaxy?!

 

Looking back to the early days of Windows Live Messenger – here is how one of our users remembers these days:

 Steve (USA): Early Days Experiences

I remember first using MSN Messenger back when I signed up for the MSN dial-up internet service in 1999.  At that time, I only had one friend who used MSN Messenger, and we would chat on the computer from time to time.

Shortly thereafter, as we got older and entered high school, so many more of my friends started signing up for Hotmail and MSN Messenger.

 One of my fondest memories is in my eighth grade year, when my friends had a study hall in the computer lab for the last period of the day.  We’d all get on MSN Messenger and have group chats.  Since at that time there was a limit as to how many people could be in one chat (I’m not sure if there still is or not), it was always a race to join the chat, and almost a privilege to be included in the conversation.

Chatting with each other while we all had headphones on listening to music, sharing links and transferring songs back and forth really made that study hall a blast.

Steve, USA

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY EVERYBODY!!!!

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