Geeky/Programming Product Reviews

Windows Live Installer Thoughts

The other day, the Windows Live team came out with the Windows Live Installer which basically incorporates all the Windows Live programs into one installer, pretty nice.

Few things though..

1) You can uninstall the installer and it doesn’t ask you to uninstall any of the programs it installed

2) When you run it, it takes forever to find installed programs on your computer

3) Windows Live Writer shortcuts were broken after I ran the installer

4) Windows Live Mail Desktop client – my contacts disappeared!! I put a post up in the forums, looks like others were having the same issue. I uninstalled, re-installed, but the uninstall must not be a full clean uninstall because when I ran it again all my info and accounts were still there, so it much save the info somewhere (in my Docs and Settings, Registry, somewhere – I didn’t take the time look). After fiddling around, removing accounts and what not, they magically reappeared though, so that is good

5) Not related to the release, but I noticed this, the automatic update of Windows Live contacts. There is a checkbox in the contact box in the mail client, if you uncheck, and come back later, it is checked again, ugh!

6) Also, in the mail client, the password doesn’t stop you from opening the application, it is just used for sync stuff. Kind of misleading, I put a bug on connect, but they said it was “by design”. Even though Microsoft will always want people to use multiple profiles on a computer, that is probably a pipe dream, people use one profile and just switch using programs such as mail, etc. Windows Live Messenger allows you to sign in differently based on account, why not do the same for the Mail client?

7) Even though I have gripes above, I still think it is a good thing, The Windows Live suite is coming along. Few things I would like – more options in the contacts, to be able to set other IM addresses per service (AIM, GTalk, ICQ, Yahoo). Also, the ability to set pictures for your contacts would be nice. Also, they need to get the calendar solution going to.

Overall, I love the Windows Live suite, the mail/contacts/messenger/live writer apps are awesome. I use my T-Mobile dash, and with Windows Mobile 6.0, my Windows Live contacts sync to my phone, and Windows Live Messenger integration happens right on my phone, very sweet. I use the mail desktop app on my laptop, it is less bulky than outlook, built specifically for Windows Live (BTW, my main email address is – I use Windows Live Custom Domains to manage that and integrate it with Windows Live – another sweet product!). Then, when somewhere out and about where I don’t have my laptop or connectivity on my phone, but Internet or another computer, I can use to get my mail/contacts. Sweet sweet integration!

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By Steve Novoselac

Director of Digital Technology @TrekBikes, Father, Musician, Cyclist, Homebrewer

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