Technology Advice by Ryan Taylor Adams

Permanently Remove Windows Messenger

May 9th, 2008 · No Comments · Printer Friendly Version


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Windows Messenger, the instant message client created by Microsoft, is installed by default with Windows XP. Even if you don’t want to use Windows Messenger, it will automatically load every time you start your computer. Removing it is difficult, as it does not appear in the standard Add/Remove Programs control panel applet. Additionally, if you have managed to remove it, the latest service pack for Windows XP (SP3) will reinstall it. Here’s how to get rid of Windows Messenger for good:

To remove Windows Messenger manually:

  1. Click Start then “Run…”
  2. Type (or copy and paste) “RunDll32 advpack.dll,LaunchINFSection %windir%\inf\msmsgs.inf,BLC.Remove” into the “Open:” box, then press enter. 
  3. If you use Outlook Express (does not apply to Outlook), you will need to open the registry editor and find the key “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Outlook Express”.
  4. Right-click in the right pane and select New, “Dword value”.
  5. Name the new DWORD key “Hide Messenger”.
  6. Double-click “Hide Messenger” and set the value to 2.
  7. Close the registry editor.
  8. Restart your computer.

You can also download and run this file, which will perform all of the above steps for you automatically!