Windows Live Mail

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Windows Live Mail
Windows Live Mail 2012 running on Windows 8
Developer(s) Microsoft
Stable release 2012 (v16.4.3528.0331) (November 4, 2014; 6 years ago (2014-11-04)) [±]
Operating system Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows 8, and Windows 10
License Freeware

Windows Live Mail (formerly named Windows Live Mail Desktop, code-named Elroy[1]) is a freeware email client from Microsoft. The application is available for download via the Windows Essentials suite.

Windows Live Mail is the successor to Windows Mail on Windows Vista, which was the successor to Outlook Express on Windows XP. It is compatible with Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows 8,[2] and Windows 10.[3]


Version 12 (Wave 2)

The first version of Windows Live Mail was released on November 6, 2007. The Windows Live Mail version numbering starts at 12 because this application is an advancement of Windows Mail, not an entirely new application. Windows Live Mail is developed by the same team that wrote Windows Mail.

Windows Live Mail has all of the features of Windows Mail. It also adds the following new features:

  • Support for Web-based email accounts including Hotmail, Gmail, and Yahoo! Mail Plus.
  • A different user interface which matches the other Windows Live "Wave 2" applications.
  • Synchronization with Windows Live Contacts.
  • Support for RSS feeds. Notable features include the ability to reply directly via email to the author of an item that appears in an RSS feed, and the ability to aggregate multiple feeds into a single folder. The RSS functionality requires Internet Explorer 7 or newer.
  • Multi-line message lists.
  • Emoticons can be used in emails and other functions.
  • In-line spell checking.
  • Separate inbox folders for different POP accounts.
  • Support for sending picture files in emails through the Photo email feature, which uploads pictures to a web-based service and sends the URL and thumbnails in the mail. It can also perform basic photo correction and apply different border effects to pictures.

Comparison with Windows Mail

While Windows Live Mail is the successor to Windows Mail on Windows Vista, there were several differences in functionality between Windows Live Mail and Windows Mail when it was released in 2007. These include:

  • Ability to view and edit HTML email by source has been removed in Windows Live Mail
  • Ability to set margins has been removed
  • Scripted Stationery for Windows Live Mail 2011 is available from Cloudeight Stationery
  • Locally installed help documentation is not available for Windows Live Mail
  • Support for using different mailboxes with separate folders (inbox, junk and so on) added in Windows Live Mail
  • Support for DeltaSync, a proprietary protocol for access to Windows Live Hotmail email accounts, was added in Windows Live Mail
  • Support for WebDAV HTTP-based protocol (web-based email accounts) was added in Windows Live Mail
  • Ability to perform full-text index-based search in Windows Live Mail if Windows Search is installed

Version 2009 (Wave 3)

A beta version of Windows Live Mail was released in September 2008. It features a new user interface which, like the other Windows Live "Wave 3" beta applications released at the same time, has no icons on the toolbar buttons. It also features a new calendaring function; calendar events automatically synchronise between Windows Live Mail and the Web-based Windows Live Calendar. A "beta refresh" version of Windows Live Mail was released on December 15, 2008, and this version was officially released as the final version on January 8, 2009. This was the last version to support Windows XP.[4]

Version 2009 still contains the same MIME problem with signed mail[5] that Outlook Express has.

Version 2011 (Wave 4)

The first beta became available on June 24, 2010, sporting ribbons in the user interface and a calendar pane. The second beta came with a new start-up screen and other minor updates. The final version of Windows Live Mail 2011 was released on September 30, 2010, along with the Windows Live Essentials 2011 suite. It requires Windows Vista or newer; Windows XP is no longer supported.[4]

Version 2012 (Wave 5)

On August 7, 2012, Microsoft released a new version of Windows Essentials 2012, which included Windows Live Mail 2012. It requires Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows 8,[2] or Windows 10.[3] Windows Vista is no longer supported.[4]

See also


  1. Udezue, Oji (6 November 2007). "Windows Live Mail v1 is released!". More Than Mail blog. Microsoft. Archived from the original on 8 April 2008.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Windows Essentials 2012 system requirements". Microsoft Windows Help. Microsoft. Retrieved 14 December 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Download Windows Live Mail For Windows 10". Into Windows. Archived from the original on Jan 5, 2016. Unknown parameter |deadurl= ignored (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 "Windows Essentials download optionsWindows Essentials download options". Microsoft. Retrieved 4 May 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. newsgroup example showing use of both OpenPGP/MIME and S/MIME

External links