Remove and Uninstall MSN Messenger – the easy way

I was hit - for the nth time - with the now familiar face of MSN Messenger in my tray at a system start-up. I've decided to document my uninstall efforts this time, to reduce the chances of the nightmare reoccurring.

The reasons for removing MSN Messenger are numerous: perhaps you do not use it and would free the amount of memory it takes, or you simply use a better substitute, such as Portable Pidgin. Unlike Microsoft’s own, Pidgin Portable has the advantage of accessing all messaging networks from the same interface and is also portable, being designed to be used from a USB stick.

The instructions other sites give for removing this nuisance seem unnecessarily complex, asking you to find hidden files, etc. Here is what you need to do:

1. Use a “wizard”

XP-AntiSpy will easily do all the necessary steps for you and will optionally remove or correct other annoyances in Windows. There are several other programs that can do the same thing for you.

2. Remove it manually

a) First, try to take it out from the Control Panel –> Add or Remove Programs –> Add/Remove Windows Components. There should be an entry for MSN Messenger or even Windows Messenger. Highlight it then press uninstall.

Windows Components - Windows Messenger

b) Start –> Run or press Command Key + R, then enter

RunDll32 advpack.dll,LaunchINFSection %windir%\inf\msmsgs.inf,BLC.Remove

c) Again, Start –> Run or press Command Key + R, then enter

notepad c:\windows\inf\sysoc.inf

If Notepad gives an error message that the file cannot be found, in your version of windows the file is located elsewhere. To find it, search for it, then right click and choose Edit.

Search then for the line starting with msmsgs, i.e.,


(or something similar containing msmsgs=msgrocm.dll) hide and remove the word “hide” so that it becomes:


sysoc.inf no hide then save the file and exit.

Congratulations! You are now MSN Messenger – free! Reboot the computer to confirm.

Sources / More info: xp-antispy, itexpressions-msnm, ehow-msnm, tacktech-msnm, portable-pidgin


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