MSN Web Messenger has been popular with users who access to Windows Live Messenger service or server been blocked when using Windows Live Messenger desktop client, or been assigned a standard user account that cannot install or restricted from installing Windows Live Messenger client onto the computer. When connection to Windows Live Messenger is blocked, MSN Web Messenger, which solely relies on HTTP protocol, is used as a workaround to unblock messenger blockage, be it firewall rules or policy restrictions.
As an alternative to MSN Web Messenger, user can login to Windows Live Hotmail or Windows Live People (both tightly integrated) instead. A similar Windows Live Messenger (Web) has been integrated as part of Windows Live Hotmail as the replacement IM service.
Windows Live Hotmail and People built-in Messenger (Web) features integration of email and chat interface, and integration of contacts between Messenger contacts and profile contacts in Windows Live People. Once signed in, user can see if the contacts is online or offline, including directly from a status icon on email message to see if sender available for chat. The web messenger service within Windows Live service also supports multiple points of presence (MPOP) feature, which allows user to sign in or out of Windows Live Messenger from multiple places or devices at the same time, without having to sign out on the first computer.
Microsoft recommends users of MSN Web Messenger to switch to Windows Live People to continue using the web version of Messenger, especially for users with Windows Live IDs that do not use a Hotmail account as its email address. However, for most people, sign in through Windows Live Hotmail is the most convenient.
The Windows Live Web Messenger service is available on the top right corner (beside Options) after signing into Windows Live Hotmail or Windows Live People.