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Banish Live Messenger back to the Notification Area

Yes I still use Windows Messenger…well now known as “Windows Live Messenger” and I’m not afraid to admit it. There are several benefits I find to using a tangible instant messaging program over browser based apps like Gtalk, Facebook IM, etc. They accurately indicate whether you are busy/away/available, they work with keyboard shortcuts and you don’t have to worry about closing your browser all the time. One thing that bugs me about WLM on Windows 7 is that it occupies space on the task bar even when the main window is closed rather than just going to the notification area (the way it worked in Vista).

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Well, it turns out there’s a fix (published by Microsoft KB no less) that banishes Live messenger back to the notification area in Windows 7 (where it belongs!). Here’s how:

[step 1] Close Windows Live Messenger, if it is running.

[step 2] Right-click Windows Live Messenger on the Start menu, and then click Properties.

[step 3] On the Compatibility tab, select the Run this program in compatibility mode for check box, and select Windows Vista from the drop-down list.

[step 4] Click OK to apply the settings. When you launch Windows Live Messenger again, you’ll notice that it is now in the notification area.

Only when a chat window or the main live messenger window open will a corresponding item be displayed in the task bar.

That’s all.

August 22, 2011

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Comments for: Banish Live Messenger back to the Notification Area

  1. Post author: 
    David Vielmetter

    These instructions also work for the latest version of Skype for windows 7. I used Vista Sp2 instead of just vista, but either one should work.

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