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How do I uninstall Hotmail?

I am not a Hotmail subscriber but my daughter is. She
downloaded it on my computer when she was home this summer. Now every time I go
online it opens that account and her friends want to start chatting thinking I
am her. Is there any way I can get Hotmail off of my computer and not mess up
her account?

This actually illustrates a very surprising confusion I see regularly on Ask
Leo!.

Many people don’t realize that Hotmail, MSN Instant Messenger, and even MSN
itself are all very different things. They use the terms for one when talking
about the other, or use a generic term like “MSN” which could be many different
things.

The question above is a good example: the behavior sounds like MSN Instant
Messenger, yet the question references Hotmail.

So which is it, really?

Let’s start by defining each of those.

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Hotmail, originally “HoTMaiL” emphasizing that it was HTML
mail, is an online email service. By visiting http://hotmail.com and logging in with your own account,
you can send and receive email. As long as you have a web browser (and if
you’re reading this, you do), there is nothing to download. Visit Hotmail,
login, read and send email. That’s pretty much all there is to it.

MSN Instant Messenger is an instant messaging client. It
allows you to chat in real time with other people using MSN Instant Messenger,
or compatible chat clients. This is a program that you typically
download and install in order to
use. (Though there are web-based versions of the client, the phrase “MSN
Instant Messenger” refers, specifically, to the downloadable program.)

There’s further confusion, of course, because there’s a compatible, but
different, instant messaging program called “Windows Messenger”.

“What this question is really referring to is, of course, MSN Instant
Messenger.”

MSN, short for MicroSoft Network, is a family of services
and products created by Microsoft. It begins with its home page, http://msn.com, which is a general
internet “portal” – a web site that contains news, features and links to other
sites and services. Both Hotmail and MSN Instant Messenger are a part of
MSN.

So you can see that when someone asks me “How do I uninstall Hotmail?” –
well, the question doesn’t really make sense. It’s not something that was
installed in the first place.

What this question is really referring to is, of course, MSN Instant
Messenger. It does support both automatic login, and the ability of friends to
see that you are logged in, so that they can start chatting with you.

The answer to that question is either to uninstall it, or perhaps
to disable it’s auto-login feature. Instructions for uninstalling both Windows
and MSN Instant Messenger are in this article: How do I uninstall Windows
Messenger?
, while disabling auto-start and auto-login are in this article:

How do I stop MSN Messenger from starting automatically and logging me
in?
.

Computers are picky beasts, as you probably realize. Unfortunately that also
means that terminology matters in order to get the most accurate assistance
possible.

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33 comments on “How do I uninstall Hotmail?”

  1. Having been unable to get any relevant and useful information from Microsoft about a problem I had with downloading attachments, a quick search yesterday found your great web site and my problem was solved !!

    Reply
  2. I think you gave a slightly misleading solution here, and that is you gave the “How to uninstall” link before the preferred procedure of disabling auto-login. Because I thought anybody asking a basic question like that is bound to follow your instructions step-by-step 🙂

    The problem maybe that I still don’t know how newbies might think even though I was once a newbie!

    Reply
  3. The related links aren’t intended to be a step by step anything … they’re simply related. The real intent of the article is to clarify the definitions of things like Messenger, Hotmail and others.

    Reply
  4. I have today installed a Hotmail account. Although I can log in, when I click open account it takes me to a news and interest page and I can’t get a compose page or any incoming mail.

    I have been tearing my hair out all afternoon so how do I uninstall it Please Thanks

    Reply
  5. For goodness sake! Don’t uninstall anything! Get with it! Go to MSN Instant Messaging & SIGN YOURSELF up with an email address and IM name! Then YOU can chat with your daughter at anytime, & IM w/your friends/family. With your own IM name, her friends won’t ‘bug’ you anymore when you log on. I’m over age 60 & we have “family” chats w/family while traveling the world, (from internet cafes or hotel lobbies). We add each one to the conversation & all chat together, whether in Hawaii, Thailand, Peru, or Oregon. It’s way better than a postcard received after getting back home & you know if there are any problems someone has to deal with that a stateside person can help with. Go for it! I can hardly use a computer, but I could figure that one out! Just read everything & follow the instructions!

    Reply
  6. Leo, maybe try being a milk man, directions for something as uninstalling hot mail is to hard 4 u
    ty 4 wasteing my time, what article. you,ve wasted enough of my time

    Reply
  7. leo,i have a free hotmail account and every time i want to reply to a web page it won’t allow me.please help me to delete my account!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply
  8. Actual question: I have Messenger, and in Messenger I should be able to click my email’s related link to open Hotmail. However, I managed to disable a Windows XP service so that Hotmail won’t auto-open thru Messenger. Any idea which service controls that?

    Reply
  9. I recently a signed up for a hotmail account and know when I open up “explorer” I get a message that reads warning about “secure sites” which I never had before and which is a pain…in addition hotmail will not remember my password as I’ve selected. Any thoughts.
    Thanks, Jack

    Reply
  10. I do not like the hotmail I want it remove from
    my computer. If you don’t want something you don’t
    want to keep it. So tell me how to get it off.
    Thanks Mr Guidry

    Reply
  11. I do not like the hotmail I want it remove from
    my computer. If you don’t want something you don’t
    want to keep it. So tell me how to get it off.
    Thanks Mr Guidry

    Reply
  12. I wish to change my name and loose some undesirables who Ive met over past few years, i want my name to be off of their msn lists, how do i do this please anyone?

    Reply
  13. I would like to get hotmail uninstall off my
    computer. It not in add or remove but it still
    in. Don’t like it.
    Thank you Mr Guidry

    Reply
  14. Dear Leo,
    All you told me was how to get rid of msn ‘messenger’ or windows ‘messenger’! That’s not what I asked you. I asked you ‘how do I uninstall or get ‘hotmail’ off my computer !

    Reply
  15. Old Goat… you CAN’T “uninstall” Hotmail because Hotmail never installs itself in the first place. Hotmail is a website, not a program. The problem that is causing this IS MSN messenger that presents itself like it’s Hotmail. Uninstall MSN messenger and your problems with “Hotmail” should be solved.

    Reply
  16. If You say I have to remove Messenger ,in order to rid my computer ,how do I go about this . Also I do want to keep my msn mail . It was a lot less complicated . Your response will be greatly appreciated . Thank You Leo .

    Reply
  17. Hi! I’ve been uninstalling some things on my computer and I’d like to know if I uninstall MSN will I still be able to use my hotmail/email account?

    Reply
  18. Whenever I receive a hotmail/email & try to reply, I loose the entire text or body of email that I received. In other words, I get email, I reply, and when I hit “reply”, everything that was sent to me is now blank, including my signature. Does anyone know how to resolve this? Sometimes I still get the whole text, most times my reply page goes blank. HELP!

    Reply
  19. how do I uninstall hotmail. I can’t write any letters or reply to them…thinking I might need to delete the program and re-install. Need your opinion and directions.

    Please read the article you just commented on. It answers this question.

    Leo
    18-Mar-2011
    Reply
  20. In checking out hoymail we got it installedbut we don’t want it .How do we get it uninstalled ?

    Please read the article you just commented on. Hotmail is not something that is installed on your computer – it’s just a website you visit. Don’t visit.

    Leo
    20-Jun-2011

    Reply
  21. I joined Hotmail but do not use it and apparently they are returning mail to my Contacts that has been sent to me on my Netscape site.

    Reply
  22. Leo, in IE, my Hotmail e-mails don’t open nor do the folders. A message just says “loading,” but nothing happens. Any idea what the problem is and how to fix it? All works fine in Firefox.

    Reply
  23. @Heath
    Lot’s of times when I have problems like that I’ll try another browser. Each of the browsers (IE, Chrome, Firefox, Safari) renders things differently. Trying another browser will let you know if it is a browser problem.

    Sometimes trying another browser is really doing what Mark suggested, as it starts you with a cleared browser cache. But then sometimes it’s the program.

    Troubleshooting is a matter of narrowing possibilities down. If another browser doesn’t do the trick try opening Hotmail on someone else’s computer. Then you’ll know if it is something on your computer or not!

    Reply
  24. I need to uninstall MSN HOT MAIL as it contains 21 Old emails dating back to sept 2010 all american. I try to delete each but not one will delete. Taking up alot of space on Desk Top and annoying. Please help

    Reply

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