I can't uninstall Windows Live Messenger, and can't get rid of it using other obvious methods (registry etc.) How do I keep it from starting up each time I boot up my computer?

This is for Windows XP

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    Shark's answer is correct (sorry, this is more appropriate as a comment, but I can't comment yet as I just associated this account), but I'm here to offer a warning when it comes to Messenger. I've not bothered to do anything with the Windows Live stuff on XP, as I had a bit of a horrific experience years ago trying to do this same thing with Messenger on XP SP1 (maybe before SP1?). Maybe it's better now, but after spending the better part of a day trying to get rid of that program (it kept reinstalling itself!) I was finally successful... except that it took essential system files with it, li – erekalper Apr 11 '11 at 13:41
  • ke removing all volume control. Well played, Mr. Gates. I gave up on mastering Messenger that day. I decided the best path is just to disable it at startup as a few people have suggested in their answers, and to let Microsoft have their widely pointless 1mb program sit on my hard drive. – erekalper Apr 11 '11 at 19:00

I'm guessing you've tried uninstalling via Control Panel (if not then look into this (Google is your friend)). If you have tried this then why can you not uninstall it via this method? (Is it not appearing?)

To stop it starting up, I'd suggest using the tool CCleaner (Google it) and then using the user friendly interface to change start-up options.

Hope this helped,


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If you installed it through Windows Live Essentials, follow these steps to uninstall it:

  1. Go to Control Panel > Add/Remove Programs.
  2. Locate Windows Live Essentials and double click.
  3. Select Uninstall and hit Continue.
  4. Place a checkmark by Messenger and click continue.

If you want to remove it from the Startup List without uninstalling, click on Start > Run, type msconfig.exe and hit Enter. Under the Startup tab, find the entry related to Messenger and uncheck the box next to it. Then click OK and restart your machine.

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Go to Control Panel > Add/Remove Programs > Add/Remove Windows Components(its located in the left had navigation uncheck Windows Live Essentials

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I propose you ZapMessenger to uninstall it.

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I problem with uninstalling messenger is every time you do a update it will re-install unless you watch for it. I think it is better to disable it as follows:

Click the start button Click run Enter the command "services.msc" Click the ok button Find Messenger in the services list and double-click on it Change the Startup type to Disabled Click the stop button Click the ok button

You may also wish to rename the directory to "No Messenger" C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Live\No Messenger

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