How to Get Rid of Windows Live Messenger

You know how it goes. You install something that you think might be useful or interesting, and it installs something else that just. won’t. go. away. I ran into the problem while setting up a new Windows 7 system at work. I installed Windows Live Essentials mainly so that I’d have them available if I ever had to talk someone through tech support, and it included Windows Live Messenger.

I don’t use Windows Live Messenger. I don’t even have an account on Windows Live Messenger. But every time I logged in to my system, WLM would pop up a window and ask me to log in. Every single time.

There was no obvious way to disable it, and most of the suggestions I found online only applied to earlier versions of Windows.

It doesn’t provide an option to stop it from launching on startup. Or rather, it does, but only if you’ve logged into WLM. Since I didn’t have an account, I couldn’t do that, and I wasn’t about to create one just to turn it off!

It wasn’t in the Start-Up folder.

I didn’t see it in Services, so I couldn’t disable it there.

I tried running System Configuration and disabling it in the Startup tab, but that didn’t work.

I couldn’t even find it in the list of programs to uninstall.

But you know what?

I finally got rid of it! And it was easier than I expected.

It turns out that if you uninstall Windows Live Essentials, you don’t have to remove the whole thing. You can choose which pieces to remove! Just tell it to uninstall, and it’ll bring up a checklist of the pieces that are on the system. Check off Windows Live Messenger, leave the pieces you want to keep, and hit Continue.


28 thoughts on “How to Get Rid of Windows Live Messenger

    1. Kelson Post author

      Yeah. It wasn’t quite so bad on XP because it only brought up the little taskbar icon, instead of popping up a login window.

  1. Tash

    i just downloaded windows live messenger for my computer and whenever i tried to log in it wouldnt let me so i uninstalled the program and tried redownloading the program and now it keeps tellin me that it can’t download because there is already a version on my computer and ive searched every file, folder everything on my computer and i cant find it but it keeps saying that it is there!!..what did i do wrong i uninstalled it properly and everything and its not showing anywhere on my computer but it keeps sayin its there and something about error code “1603″….please help!!!!

  2. Jonathan

    THANK YOU so much for this info. I searched everywhere on my computer for the Windows Messenger program but I couldn’t find it. I tried ur suggestion, AND IT WORKED!

  3. inga

    I have Windows 7 ultimate and it won’t allow me to select what I want to uninstall from Windows Live Essentials . So do I have to uninstall Windows Live Essentials all together?? I’m so sick of that sign up pop up window . I don’t want to open a account to get rid of it.

    1. Kelson Post author

      Everything is combined under that single entry for “Windows Live Essentials.” Just tell it to uninstall WLE, and after you get past the Uninstall/Repair choice, it should give you a list of the individual pieces that you can remove.

  4. Charlotte

    Bless you! Thanks so much for posting this. It worked so quickly and easily–and after I’d searched for the answer for 3 days!!!

  5. tara

    thank you thank you thank you. i have been trying to get rid of this damn annoying thing forever and just found your post. you are my hero!!!

  6. Rita

    PERFECT!! I got rid of live messenger by doing the uninstasll and clicking on messenger…worked like a charm.
    THANK YOU!!!!

  7. Alastair

    Thank you! I too have searched for this answer for too long and got fed up with find posts from 2005 referring to XP. Live long and prosper 🙂

  8. Julie Morrison

    Thank you so much I have wanted to get rid of it for so long because my daughter put it on my computer and I couldn’t sign in with her account without doing an update which it wouldn’t let me do. I am eternally grateful.

  9. Pat Veretto

    Thank you! I was going nuts trying to get rid of the stupid popup sign in thing. I still don’t know how it got there, but thank heavens it’s gone!


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