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CNET Membership newsletter May 28, 2004 


The 5 that matter

Dear CNET members:
This week, I was hoping to give Jennifer a clear-cut solution to removing Windows Messenger. However, there were many variables to consider, such as what Windows version she's running (XP Pro or Home?), if Service Pack 1 was installed, what version of Windows Messenger she's running, will the removal of this program affect the performance of other applications such as Outlook, and so on. With that said, Chuck's winning answer below is a great one, but it may not be a one-size-fits-all solution. So like always, please check out the honorable mentions for alternative solutions. And use this opportunity in the forums to discuss some other issues if you need further assistance or have something to add. Good luck! Thanks for all the great submissions.

1I just bought a new PC, and Windows Messenger automatically starts running every time I go online. I never use instant messengers, so how do I get rid of it?

--Submitted by: Jennifer B. of Fredericktown, OH

If your new computer is running Windows XP Home or Pro edition, you can use the steps below. If you have SP1 installed, Windows added a new feature to the "Add or remove program" tool in the control panel called "Set program access and defaults." You can use this feature to remove Windows Messenger from the Start menu, the desktop, and other locations.

However, if you don't have Service Pack 1 installed, you can do the following, depending on whether you are running the Home or Pro version.

Pro version:
1. Click Start > Run, type gpedit.msc, then press Enter.
2. Double-click the following items to expand them: Local Computer Policy, Computer Configuration, Administrative Templates, Windows Components, Windows Messenger 3. Double-click "Do not allow Windows Messenger to run" and click Enable.
4. Click OK, then quit the Group Policy snap-in.

For users running the Home edition:
1. Start Windows Messenger
2. Click Options on the Tools menu.
3. Click the Preferences tab, click to clear the "Run this program when Windows starts" check box, and then click OK.

--Submitted by: Chuck B. of Spokane, WA

Click here for the Chuck's complete answer, which includes instructions on how to prevent Windows Messenger from running in Outlook and Outlook Express. And don't forget the honorable mentions!

For his efforts, we’re sending Chuck his choice of any Help.com Learning CD.

Check out next week's question:

When I use Microsoft Word (XP), the program constantly underlines my sentences to alert me to possible bad grammar or other errors. While working drafts, it's annoying; how do I stop the nagging?

--Submitted by: Ken F. of Los Angeles, CA


We feature a new question every Friday. If you have the answer, e-mail us at messageboards@cnet.com. If we choose your response, you'll get a free Help.com CD. Click here for Q&A submission guidelines


Best regards and enjoy!

Lee Koo
CNET Community
Got suggestions? E-mail me: messageboards@cnet.com


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Ever wonder how durable CD-RWs are? Or what their average life span is? What about reformatting and adding new data to them: how will that affect the disc? Find out these answers and more in this discussion. More from the Hardware forum




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