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Windows Live Messenger 8.5 – 64-bit incompatibility

In the small spectrum of software developers who writes compatible software with 64-bit versions of Windows, you’d expect Microsoft to be the last to drop the ball. Today, Microsoft’s Windows Live Messenger team did exactly just that and dropped compatibility for 64-bit versions of Windows XP and Windows Server 2003.

A reasonable person might be led to believe Windows Live Messenger 8.5 is somehow incompatible with those versions of Windows. Unfortunately, reason seems to be out of the equation.

As part of the automatic rollout of the final version of Windows Live Messenger 8.5, Jura of the Windows Live Messenger team announced on the blog today,

A special note for those of you running Messenger 8.5 Beta on Windows XP 64-bit or Windows 2003 Server: the final version of Messenger 8.5 will not install or run on your OS. We don’t want you to get stuck out in the cold so you will not receive the mandatory upgrade to the final version. However, these operating systems won’t be supported by future Messenger versions.

It’s almost as if someone held a gun to their head to announce this because as a matter of fact, the final version of Messenger 8.5 does infact install and run on 64-bit XP and Server 2003 as proven by Rafael Rivera and Jonanthan Kay.

To be perfectly clear, the only hurdle prohibiting end-users from doing so is the custom installer application. All you need to do is avoid the custom installer and install the MSI file directly. No ‘hacking’ required.

I really don’t understand why they would lie about the software not installing or running on 64-bit XP and Server 2003. This is not even a matter of support. They could have outrightly said “we do not support these 64-bit operating systems”, but to say “it doesn’t work” is absolutely untrue.

They could have as well just said,

Thanks for beta-testing WLM 8.5 which installed and ran just fine on your 64-bit XP systems. Your efforts to improve the product, for the rest of us, is much appreciated.

Now it’s time to part ways – it’s not me, it’s you – and you should probably downgrade to the older and less featured but “stable” version of WLM. Trust us, the software doesn’t really work on your system. The cake 64-bit support was a lie.

Windows Live Messenger 8.5 remains compatible and supported on 64-bit versions of Windows Vista.

Source:→ Long Zheng

Microsoft, Windows Live Messenger, Messenger 8.5, 64–bit, Windows Server 2003, Windows XP, Incompatibility

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