What’s the Difference Between Hotmail.com, Msn.com, Live.com and Now Outlook.com?

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Is there no longer a hotmail.com? I am so confused. I sign into hotmail and it automatically sends me to outlook.com. It would not take my old password, so I had to change it. But, there is nothing in the account. How do you retrieve information that was in hotmail.com. This is crazy!!How can I get my messages from my old account or is this really something that has happened. Is there no longer a MSN hotmail.com? or is this a joke of some kind.

It’s no joke.

Microsoft continues a long history of confusing the heck out of us with the names they choose for their services, and then changing those names as they go along.

Outlook.com is what we once knew as Hotmail, which was also called “MSN Hotmail” and was also “Windows Live Hotmail”. That’s relatively easy, albeit confusing. But there’s more to it than that.

For the record: none of this involves losing any email. That’s something else entirely.

Read moreWhat’s the Difference Between Hotmail.com, Msn.com, Live.com and Now Outlook.com?

Can I Still Get a Hotmail Email Address?

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I don’t want an Outlook email address, I want Hotmail. Can I still get one?

Much to my surprise, the answer appears to be yes!

What with the demise of hotmail.com a few years ago – it was replaced by outlook.com – I was expecting the ability to create an email address on the hotmail.com domain to have disappeared as well.

I was wrong. At least as of this writing, you can still do it. I’ll show you how, and discuss a few other popular Microsoft-related email domains.

Read moreCan I Still Get a Hotmail Email Address?

How Not To Get Locked Out of Your Microsoft Account While Traveling

I’m writing this on the last day of a trip taken to the Netherlands to visit relatives. As planned, I decided to play a little with a couple of my Microsoft accounts (aka Hotmail or Outlook.com accounts) to see if I could duplicate what so many people seem to experience: getting locked out while travelling abroad.

I didn’t get locked out.

Why I didn’t run into problems is pretty simple: I was prepared. (Though I also think something else played a part for at least one of my accounts; more on that in a moment.) But I can see how a lack of preparation can end up with accounts inaccessible until you return home.

Let’s review exactly what I mean by “preparation”, and how you can avoid getting locked out of your Microsoft account when you hit the road. I’ll also touch on why Microsoft takes these additional security steps.

Read moreHow Not To Get Locked Out of Your Microsoft Account While Traveling

How Do Outlook and Outlook.com Relate?

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I use Outlook.com. Does that mean I don’t need Outlook? Are those just other names for the same thing? If not, how do they relate to each other?

The short answer is, they don’t. Not at all. They have only two things in common: they’re both related to email, and have the word “Outlook” in their names.

That’s pretty much where the similarity ends. It’s frustrating, because people often refer to “Outlook” when they mean “Outlook.com” … which is not actually related to “Outlook”.

Let’s define ’em, shall we?

Read moreHow Do Outlook and Outlook.com Relate?

4 Alternatives for Windows Live Mail and Outlook.com

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Is the attached really true and how can I keep all my emails in hotmail on my PC and work with those when I am off line? I also store all my emails on my PC in WLM as well as have many groups created for my bulk mail-outs.

That’s just one of several questions that arrived recently in response to Microsoft’s announcement that their Windows Live Mail 2012 desktop email program would no longer support Outlook.com-based email accounts, including email addresses at hotmail.com, outlook.com, msn.com, live.com, and more.

Naturally, this took a lot of people by surprise.

As it turns out, the dire warnings, while certainly significant, may not be entirely accurate. And, of course, the warnings fail to mention some very viable alternatives that don’t involve Microsoft.

Read more4 Alternatives for Windows Live Mail and Outlook.com

How do I close my Hotmail or Outlook.com account?

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I need to close my Hotmail account. I’m getting too much spam, and besides, I think it’s been hacked. I just want to close it and stop it from bothering anyone anymore. How do I do that?

I’d actually suggest that you seriously reconsider closing your account.

Closing your account will not stop spam that looks like it came from the account; hackers often fake the “From:” address whether or not the account exists.

Closing your account will not stop your contacts from “being bothered”; if they had even brief access to your contact list, the spammers have probably already made a copy.

Closing your account is not guaranteed to cause emails sent to it to bounce back to the sender; bounce messages are optional, and many services choose not to send them, to reduce spam.

Closing your account may not even be possible if it’s been hacked, and you don’t have access to it yourself.

All that being said, if you still want to close it, I’ll walk you through the steps; it’s not really that hard.

Read moreHow do I close my Hotmail or Outlook.com account?

I see lots of failed attempts to login to my account, should I do anything?

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Hi, Leo. I was changing my password tonight on Hotmail and went into a section I never noticed before called recent activity. I was shocked to see that in the past two weeks there were a ton of failed attempts from nearly every country on the map that had tried to login to my Hotmail account. Is this normal? Should I be scared? Should I close the account? I’ve had this account since 1997 so it has lots of information about me in different folders. Thanks.

Honestly, what you’re seeing doesn’t surprise me. I do have some suggestions on what you should do, but closing your account isn’t one of them.

Read moreI see lots of failed attempts to login to my account, should I do anything?

How can I get my lost Hotmail emails back?

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My old emails have disappeared from my Hotmail/Outlook.com account. I’ve logged into the account on a weekly basis so I know that isn’t the issue. I searched old emails and they’re just gone; anything past 2013 emails are gone which I need to have. What can be done? When I found out and panicked I searched links and saw a link without reading carefully about Hotmail help. It turned out that it was not Hotmail but a company called [company redacted]; they took over my computer remotely before I realized they were not directly associated with Microsoft. Are they legit? Do they do further damage?

Keeping anything critically important in only a free email account like Hotmail is unfortunately a recipe for disaster.

I want to go over how you might have been better prepared for this. I’ll touch on what you might do to get your email back (but to be honest, I’m not very hopeful) and I’ll talk about the service that you let access your machine.

Read moreHow can I get my lost Hotmail emails back?

How Do I Make a New Hotmail Account? Or Outlook.com Account?

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How do I make a new Hotmail account?

Hotmail was replaced with Outlook.com. You probably already know this; that’s where you now go to access your Hotmail email.

You can create your new new email account using Outlook.com – and maybe even make it a Hotmail.com email address.

But first, there’s a step that is apparently not quite as obvious to as many people as we might expect.

Read moreHow Do I Make a New Hotmail Account? Or Outlook.com Account?

What Are Outlook.com’s IMAP, POP3, and SMTP Settings?

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How do I use Hotmail or Outlook.com with my desktop email program? It wants something about POP3 and SMTP. What should I put in?

With the proliferation of devices running their own email programs, settings for POP3, SMTP, and now more frequently IMAP are a popular request for the various email services.

For a long time, Microsoft didn’t provide the ability to connect to a desktop email program, but they added it to Hotmail a few years ago. With the transition to Outlook.com as Hotmail’s replacement, that functionality remains.

Read moreWhat Are Outlook.com’s IMAP, POP3, and SMTP Settings?

How Do I Use and Clear Outlook.com Contacts and Auto-complete Suggestions?

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I am finding the new Outlook.com very annoying. How do I find my list of addresses and save a new one? When forwarding, I have to click through a whole load of addresses to get to the ones I want and then, delete the ones that I did not want. It wastes a lot of time.

Outlook.com is the online replacement for Hotmail. It’s unrelated to Microsoft’s Office Outlook  email program.

Outlook.com attempts to provide a clean, easy-to-use interface for managing not only your email, but your contacts, calendar, and (with the addition of SkyDrive) your data files as well.

Unfortunately, cleanliness or simplicity only goes so far. You’re not the only one who finds the displayed contacts and email addresses confusing when you compose a new email.

Let’s look at how it all works.

Read moreHow Do I Use and Clear Outlook.com Contacts and Auto-complete Suggestions?

How do I change my Hotmail or Outlook.com password?

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I cannot get to the Account Summary or Options page for my Hotmail account. I needed to change my password.

As Microsoft updates its mail offering, some of its features are moving or changing.

As I’ve mentioned before, if you have a Hotmail (or Outlook.com, as it’s now called) account, you should expect change. Change happens. Sometimes, it’s small and other times, it’s quite dramatic – such as how you change your password.

I’ll walk through the steps to change your password in the current (as of this writing) design.

Read moreHow do I change my Hotmail or Outlook.com password?

How do I automatically forward Hotmail in Outlook.com?

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I’m changing email accounts, but I don’t want to lose people who have my Hotmail address. How do I automatically forward Hotmail messages messages to my new account at a different provider?

The recent forced switch-over to the Outlook.com user interface left many long-time Hotmail users upset and dissatisfied. Many are considering leaving Outlook.com behind, except that this would mean abandoning their Hotmail.com email address.

Fortunately, it’s very easy to automatically forward Hotmail messages or any email that comes into your Outlook.com account to another email provider.

Read moreHow do I automatically forward Hotmail in Outlook.com?

How Do I Print an Email in Outlook.com (Formerly Hotmail)?

This is another of those “representative” questions that I get a lot; more than I would expect, to be honest.

But when you think about it, with all the changes that Hotmail users have been through in the last few years, it’s understandable that the latest change to Outlook.com would lead to a lot of confusion.

It turns out it’s not hard at all to print an email in Outlook.com. You just need to get used to looking in a new place for some additional options.

Let me show you. (Now with video!)

Read moreHow Do I Print an Email in Outlook.com (Formerly Hotmail)?

How do I open an .isc file in Outlook.com?

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So Hotmail changed its name to “Outlook”…fine. The problem that I’m having is that someone has sent me a “.isc” file which is apparently an Outlook-part of Office calendar. Is there some way to view this file with in Outlook (previously Hotmail)? It seems like if they are trying for a seamless integration, there would be. If they are just trying to annoy us,… well, that’s working.

So the naming is very, very unfortunate. I really cringed when they first announced Outlook.com.

The bottom line is that Outlook.com (formerly known as Hotmail) is not related to Outlook, the desktop email program that comes with Microsoft Office. It sounds like the .isc file needs the Office desktop program. It’s part of Outlook the program, not Outlook.com.

But wait … there may be something else going on here.

Read moreHow do I open an .isc file in Outlook.com?

How do I change my Hotmail alternate email address?

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The email address I used for recovery is no longer valid. I can’t figure out how to change my alternate email address.

Your alternate email address is a critical bit of information that you’ll need if you ever lose your password, or if your account ever gets hacked.

It’s good of you to note that your current one is invalid – if you no longer have access to your alternate email address then it’s just as bad as, perhaps even worse than, not having set up an alternate email address at all.

I’ll show you how to change it.

Read moreHow do I change my Hotmail alternate email address?

What are my Lost Hotmail Account and Password Recovery Options?

As long time readers know I get a lot of reports of Hotmail account theft and compromise. Every day there are reports of everything from simple password loss, to email being sent “From” your email address, to attempts to actually scam your contacts.

Depending on exactly what’s happened, the available remedies may be simple, they may be difficult, or they may be completely impossible: your account and everything in it might be lost forever.

I’ll review the various scenarios, and direct you to related articles on Ask Leo! that cover the options for each.

Read moreWhat are my Lost Hotmail Account and Password Recovery Options?

How Do I Change My Hotmail Name or Address?

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My MSN Hotmail name is “something@hotmail.com”. I really don’t like the “something”. What I’d really like is to be “somethingelse@hotmail.com”. How do
I change it?

This is another one of those seemingly simple questions that I get several times every day.

What you’re asking for is not to change your name, but your email address. Unfortunately, your email address is how MSN Hotmail identifies you. A different email address means a completely different MSN Hotmail account.

Read moreHow Do I Change My Hotmail Name or Address?