Windows Live Mail, Live Writer & Messenger 8.5 Beta

Microsoft has announced the availability of 3 Windows Live products today, all of which are beta.

Windows Live Mail is the free consumer client Microsoft will invest in moving forward. It is a superset of existing free clients and will replace Outlook Express, Windows Mail and Windows Live Mail desktop beta. While it used to be a paid feature, Hotmail customers can now access their account for free in Outlook 2003 and Windows Live Mail.

Windows Live Writer is a blogging tool that has been available in the US since August of last year. The tool was very well received by US bloggers at launch since it provides increased product functionality for Windows Live Spaces users and it also allows publishing to many of the largest blogging products in the world.

Windows Live Messenger 8.5 will also go out with a largely back-end update, but includes feature updates such as new look and feel in sign-in and conversation window, new emoticons, and integration with Windows Live OneCare Family Safety.

Download: Windows Live Writer Beta 2
Download Windows Live Messenger 8.5 Beta 1:

US (En) | US (Es) | GB (En) | India (En) | French | German | Spain | Chinese (Simplified) | Japanese
Download Windows Live Mail Beta:
US (En) | US (Es) | GB (En) | India (En) | French | German | Spain | Chinese (Simplified) | Japanese
Screenshots: Messenger 8.5 Beta 1 Gallery | Writer Beta Gallery
View: Messenger Blog posting | Mail Blog Posting

Additional information about Windows Live Mail:

This client service is similar to Outlook Express and Windows Mail software but is optimized to work with Windows Live Hotmail and other Windows Live services. Windows Live Mail beta is designed to work with Windows Live Hotmail, providing a similar UI and familiar interaction model. The client will offer additive features to Windows Live Hotmail, made possible by bringing together client software with services including things like offline mail and account aggregation.

  • Offline mail
  • Windows Live Hotmail account aggregation
  • Additional account aggregation for POP and IMAP mail accounts
  • RSS feed aggregation
  • More advanced photo-sharing capabilities
  • More advanced search via integration with Desktop Search
  • Additional safety (AV scanning, anti-phishing, anti-spam protection across aggregated accounts for customers who do not have an AV product)
  • Additional integration with Windows Live services including Spaces
There will be no graphical advertisements in Windows Live Mail beta at this time.

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Samsung Gives Mobile Phone Memory a Boost

Next Story

Facial recognition slipped into Google image search

143 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

this let me install live mail perfectly:

1 If you installed the leaked Spanish version, uninstall it from 'Add and Remove Programs' in the Control Panel. If not then just go to step 2.
2 Go to "C:/Program Files/" and delete the Windows Live folder.
3 Open "C:/Documents and Settings/All Users/Application Data/" and delete the WLInstaller and WindowsLiveInstaller folders in there.

The new Windows Live Mail UI is very slick. Under Vista, the toolbar uses a slight hint of Aero Glass.

The major eye sore comes when you open up the options. They took a step backward compared to Windows Mail: the freaking Windows 9x icons are still there. x)

sorry but i have to say this beta stuff is pretty rubbish even for a beta, i would've of expected it to of at least passed the install phase, sigh.

what about if you didnt install the spanish leaked version?? cos i didnt!

live messenger 8.5 beta official installed fine, its windows live mail that wont install:(

First, if you installed the leaked Spanish version, uninstall it from 'Add and Remove Programs' in the Control Panel. Next, go to "C:/Program Files/" and delete the Windows Live folder. After that, open "C:/Documents and Settings/All Users" and delete the WLInstall and Installer folders in there. Reboot (I didn't have to but it can't hurt) and then try running the installer again.

If you are trying to install more than one of the programs, I had to redo step 3 before moving on to the next program.

So thats:

  1. If you installed the leaked Spanish version, uninstall it from 'Add and Remove Programs' in the Control Panel.
  2. Go to "C:/Program Files/" and delete the Windows Live folder.
  3. Open "C:/Documents and Settings/All Users" and delete the WLInstall and Installer folders in there.
  4. Reboot (I didn't have to but it can't hurt) and then try running the installer again.
Hope it helps. Still having trouble getting Live Mail to even run but at least I was able to install it. One hurdle jumped, who knows how many more to go.

Yeah...someone didn't test this new installer system out....I had to delete the WLInstaller / WindowsLiveInstaller folders for each install. And what exactly is this Dashboard.exe? Anyone have any clues?

And, yeah while we're on the subject of this Dashboard...why name is Dashboard in the first place? Regardless of its intended use, it's just more fodder for the mac fanboys.

Update: Nice...Live Mail doesn't want to start. It keeps popping up an error complaining about needing to be connected to the internet. Eh...I am?!? Well unless I've suddenly gotten some superhero-like power to post messages to Neowin using only my mind and a keyboard. Hmm...now that would be nice... *dreams* Oh, Windows Live...you silly, silly fool.

rancorx2, that happens to me for live mail!!

cant believe ms didnt test this, sooo many of us are having problems!

beta - AS IF - more like post alpha that hasnt been tested at all!!!

all three won't install for me, i was using the other wlm messenger beta, i uninstalled it though. the installers just disappear after saying preparing to install...

Finally Windows Live is coming together!
I love how everything installs in C:\Program Files\Windows Live\ and how all apps look the same, its finally looking decent!
I couldn't get Live Writer to install though, I'm guessing it's because I've got the UK version of Mail and Messenger and Writer is for the US?

Great work Microsoft, its took long enough though!!

I have installed wlm and wld and they work fine so far.

I have tried installing live writer and it won't install.

Thanks for updates!

there are new emoticons rob.derosa:

|-)
*-)
(brb)
:^)

just choose "show all" in the emoticons window and scroll to the very bottom for new ones!

Hey guys

How do i activate my hotmail account so I can download to Outlook 2007??

As when I try it says it needs a subscription, however in this news item it said it can now be done for free

don't think you can download outlook free just the connector to make ti work with hotmail.

Although in my case the connector keeps telling me to subscribe

dragon2611 said,
don't think you can download outlook free just the connector to make ti work with hotmail.

Although in my case the connector keeps telling me to subscribe :(

That's what it says for me too.

I thought the way it was worded in the news story we could subscribe for free now

wanderermy... i already uninstalled the previous build, when i run that command it says: "this action is only valid for currently installed programs" :(

btw live messenger 8.5 installed perfectly, so did live writer, its just live mail that wont install:(

live mail desktop installer fails, you click next and then it just disappears, it doesnt install, i tried with u.s and g.b installer and uninstalled my current 1226 build or whatever the last build was.

well done microsoft software testers!!!

Hidr0 said,
why the mail client doesnt minimize to tray?... just like the previous built?

Oh man.. WLM Desktop has that feature, but not the Windows Mail

Guess I won't be using this then, unless they add that feature in!!

Wanderermy said,
Righ Click on the icon on the tray and select
"Hide window when Inbox is minimized"

LoL thanks.. I guess I'll still install this when I get back home

Wanderermy said,
Righ Click on the icon on the tray and select
"Hide window when Inbox is minimized"

that feature only works with the minimize icon... not like the previous built that you can click close, and the client goes to tray

eSouL said,
Some bugs:
1. Contact card does't work
2. 'Show what I'm listening to' doesn't work

Can anyone confirm?

1. Works for me
2.also works... make sure its selected under WMPlayer/now playing/plug-ins/others

It's an improvement, but one thing I don't like is the border around the display picture. It tries to mimic the window border when it should use the photo border that is applied in a pictures folder on Vista instead.

Then again, when has Microsoft ever had a consistent gui between it's os and applications?

Why? WLM is a great upgrade to MSN Messenger and if the ads bother you, go download A-Patch for WLM and you might like it. Personally I think WLM is great! But I run A-Patch on every installation of WLM I do, I like the customization it offers.

zeke009 said,
Why? WLM is a great upgrade to MSN Messenger and if the ads bother you, go download A-Patch for WLM and you might like it. Personally I think WLM is great! But I run A-Patch on every installation of WLM I do, I like the customization it offers.

I use Mess Patch which has even more options than A-Patch lol but I dont like WLM mainly because of its new UI, I forget exactly what about it but Ive given it two chances and I still like 7.5 better.

Heeeeelp!!! Is there option to disable spell check or not? I don't use spell check. I need to write messages in my language. I hate when i become I. I hate red lines under words. Pleaseee...

Don't really see the need too, I can't imagine using/wanting Windows Mail if you have Windows Live Mail installed. It's the same program with added improvements.

drygnfyre said,
Don't really see the need too, I can't imagine using/wanting Windows Mail if you have Windows Live Mail installed. It's the same program with added improvements.

That's true, it's a shame i'm using Outlook 2k7 and not outlook express anymore, or i'd switch over also.

GP007 said,

That's true, it's a shame i'm using Outlook 2k7 and not outlook express anymore, or i'd switch over also.

I switched to WLM because, for my purposes, Outlook has too much going on. A lot of people probably use Outlook that really don't need everything it features.

www.a-patch.tk has the new version of a-patch to patch windows live messenger 8.5, looks amazing after using it and just 20mb ram for me:)

screenshot of my msn after using a-patch: http://i7.tinypic.com/4podnhw.jpg

windows live mail desktop link on main page is same build for me, where is link for new version?

on XP the directory is C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data (YOU WILL NEED TO SHOW HIDDEN FILES TO FIND APPLICATION DATA)

Jim_MAY said,
Thank Shuffle Storm it worked. Spanish version messed us up. :P

lol...or maybe some got in a hurry....si`

I you installed the Spanish version from a couple days ago you need to delete the following directories to get the new one to work

C:\ProgramData\WindowsLiveInstaller
C:\ProgramData\WLInstaller

Does anyone have the old 8-beta "Contact signing in" sound? I forgot to back it up before I switched and the final release one's too fuzzy

Hey guys Windows Live Messenger 8.5 wont install, i start the installation and then i accept the terms and then nothing.

I open Task Manager and start the installation, WL Messenger processes appear then after 30 secs they disapear but WL Messenger hasn't installed.

Any ideas?

I have numerous error logs in Event Viewer ie

The description for Event ID (0) in Source (WLSetupSvc) cannot be
found. The local computer may not have the necessary registry information
or message DLL files to display messages from a remote computer. You
may be able to use /AUXSOURCE = flag to retrieve this discription;
see Help and Support for details. The following information is part of the
event: Services stopped.

__________________________________________________________________

Product: Windows Live Installer -- Error 1706. An installation package for
the product Windows Live installer cannot be found. Try the installation
again using a vaild copy of the installation 'dashboard.msi'

For more information, see Help and Support Center at
http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/events.asp.

I've just downloaded Live Mail desktop, but I think it's the older beta build, the new on in the screenshot doesn't seem to be available yet.

Slimy said,
That's the old beta. At least it is for now. Check the link before posting.

Yeah for now. That's the placeholder for the new one. Jeez. 8)

MchWalte said,

Yeah for now. That's the placeholder for the new one. Jeez. 8)


I'm just saying by posting just a link and not saying anything... some people may get mad

Slimy said,

I'm just saying by posting just a link and not saying anything... some people may get mad ;)

Ah right. Nothing works anyways. Everything is broke! :disappointed:

Wait, so I can access my Hotmail/Live Mail in Thunderbird now? If it works in Outlook 2003, it's just standard POP3, is it not?

I you installed the Spanish version from a couple days ago you need to delete the following directories

C:\ProgramData\WindowsLiveInstaller
C:\ProgramData\WLInstaller