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This week, Microsoft released a new beta of an add-in that allows people to access Windows Live Hotmail in Outlook and best of all, it’s free! It’s called the Microsoft Office Outlook Connector. If you’re familiar with Windows Live Hotmail’s history, you may have heard of this add-in before. It used to require a subscription but with the new Windows Live Hotmail we’re now able to offer it free (for most features). Every Hotmail customer can now take advantage of some of the best features Outlook has to offer, like Offline access, Categorization, Flagging, Instant Search, Electronic Business Cards, the To-Do Bar… the list goes on and on.
In addition to the new Ajax user interface that allows for richer capabilities on the web, Windows Live Hotmail includes a new protocol which the Outlook Connector uses to communicate with the service. The new protocol is called Delta Sync and is very efficient, so your experience using the connector should be faster too. Give it a try and let us know what you think!
You probably noticed that the new beta is free for most features. It synchronizes Hotmail e-mail (including all your folders) and contacts for free, but still requires a paid subscription to MSN Premium, Office Live Essentials or Office Live Premium to synchronize calendars, tasks and notes.
With the new Outlook Connector beta, you can get the most of Windows Live Hotmail and Microsoft Office Outlook, so Download it Today!
Jared BrownOutlook Program Manager
I think the arrival of the Connector is great news. But I have to admit that the options for full access are a bit strange. In the past there was Hotmail Plus, but that seems to be gone. If I understand things correctly, there is really no plan that makes sense for a single individual email user right now that would allow sync of everything, right? MSN Premium has lots of stuff I am not at all interested in and is quite expensive, same for the two Office Live packages. I strongly urge you to bring back a simple plan for a single hotmail account holder to get full sync access that is comparable to the old Hotmail Plus! Also, the Office Live thing does not seem to guarantee sync. I tried the following: I created a new Office Live Premium account (using the German beta program which is free at this point until it RTMs). I then added an existing hotmail user account to that Office Live package as someone who has access to the Live site. When I log into the hotmail account now, it says that it is powered by Office Live Mail. But still, I do not get sync with the Outlook Connector of the calendar. What is going on?
What do I have to do if I want to move some of the above mentioned great features of Outlook (which aren't synchronized to the cloud) from one machine to the other? For example, I guess withouth backing up/exporting-importing, I would lose my todo list, my quick flags, my categories, my rules, etc. Otherwise, the connector's working great!
Works very well, great work! But one little thing, if this tool would be still free available for none Premium users in the future,
(I am not completly sure about this...) not hotmail premium users get a warning icon in the toolbar about the synch with the calendar. I think it could be a good idea to make it possible to disable this warning icon for the calendar check. This way the users could see if something goes wrong with the contacts or the mails, at the moment I always see this icon, if there is an error or not. Peter
+1 I totally agree with davidacoder. Too bad MSN Hotmail Plus does not allow sync via Microsoft Office Outlook Connector. It's really bad news.
Is this a COM add-in? It does not appear in the list of COM Add-ins after install. Why?
I have some problem using the software. I am unable to send out messages. They stay in the Inbox. Any solutions? Otherwise everything works fine.
I have some problems using the software. I am unable to send out messages. They stay in the Outbox. Any solutions? Otherwise everything works fine.
I thought for a few hours this connector would be the solution to my problems. But then I discovered that it doesn't work if you've assigned more than one category to an item. That means I cannot use it, because my system depends on using more than one category. It's such a pity! Would be so great if it could. Are you going to improve the web interface for tasks and notes? Searching? Filtering? Frank
it appears two times here (Outlook 2007)
1. Add-Ons: msncon32.DLL COM Addin for Microsoft Office Outlook connector
2. Exchange Client Extension: Outlook Connector Extensions
Perhaps some Vista security settings prevents you from see the Add-Ons?
@Jared: There is no FAQ at the link you provided and the support page doesn't have an option for Outlook Connector. Also, no offense, but it appears you didn't really understand our point... The question was not whether one could sync mail and contacts with Hotmail Plus. Essentially, I had two points: - Why is there no subscription plan that makes sense for an indiviual hotmail mailbox holder? - Calender sync doesn't work with Office Live subscriptions either.
Hey Jared, so I’ve been eagerly anticipating and following the release of the Outlook Connector and it’s working great! I just have this one problem with my Windows Live Hotmail through Outlook and was hoping you could take a note of it. Here’s the comment I left on the email support space at emailsupport.spaces.live.com ----- Hey all, first off, great job with the new Windows Live Hotmail (I have Plus) and the interface guys--looks really nice and slick and I like using it when I have to use the web interface. I'm also using it with my Outlook 2003 and the new Outlook Connector which works great too. Just one thing (and if not you guys, can you direct me to the right place): Any idea why Outlook sets two Message-IDs when it sends Hotmail messages through Outlook (I guess when you have an Exchange server configured as your primary account, which most people that use Outlook at work will...)? To wit in a recent message I sent to myself to test there were both of these: Message-ID: <BAY118-DS164856776D6205474E375B0110@phx.gbl> and Message-ID: <email@example.com > The first is the normail Message-ID from the Hotmail servers; the latter is the one that my Exchange server sets for messages from me. I assume you're aware that certain things barf when they see two Message-IDs? I have a web forum that won't post messages from me when I send Hotmail messages through my Outlook b/c of this. Now I had been using HTTP with Outlook and had hoped the Outlook Connector would've fixed this issue, but alas, no such luck! So while I know this seems like a connector issue, it did happen before the Connector with HTTP access to Hotmail too. Is it an Outlook issue, or something you guys can control...? Just didn't know where to go to get this fixed as regular MSN/Hotmail support would probably be pretty useless, heh. If someone can, feel free to reply back to me with more info/directions; thanks so much, and keep up the good work! ----- Any thoughts? Not really a Connector issue since it happened with HTTP access to my Hotmail Plus account too; more of an issue either with Hotmail or Outlook huh? I don’t know if 2007 still does it; guess I can upgrade and see, though I don’t suspect the behavior will change. Well figured it could’t hurt to mention it to you guys so you know; any help/direction you can provide on this would be much appreciated as I’m down with the Hotmail through Outlook and want it to get better/more functional! Cheers! BINO
Whilst it's great to see this new connector I was very disappointed that as a Windows Live Hotmail Plus user I can't make use of the Calendar feature. I really have absolutely no use for the Live Hotmail Calendar because it doesn't synchronise with my Outlook Calendar! I see no point at all in paying at least six times as much to get given some set of bloat such as antivirus and a firewall, or a web site, just to connect to my calendar! How many Hotmail Plus users can there be that makes this so uneconomical?
Hi All, My Outlook is not able to sync with the Hotmail account. If I try to do a Send-Receive, it says that "The requested task cannot be completed on this account". The error code is: 0x80040102. Also a quick question. How can I view the contacts/calendar which are on my desktop and also use the Hotmail account? Because if I add the Hotmail account as a default account, then I cannot see the contacts/calendar. Thanks a lot.
Do you know if and when the Notes Connector for Lotus Domino will be available?
First off, great job of this new product! I agree is would be nice to provide a more simple subscription model for those who just want calendar, task, note sync without all the fluff. Maybe an a la carte menu. One other suggestion... It would be great if you could create folders from within Outlook.