Microsoft killed Windows Live Messenger back in 2013, saying it was time to replace it with Skype, and we already know how that story ended. Here we are in 2019 and there are still those who miss to the Messenger original, MSN, not that of Facebook.
So much so that a couple of years ago a project called Escargot was started that allows us to use several patched versions of MSN Messenger no need for Microsoft’s dead servers, and they work overwhelmingly well, with all those things that make us miss it, and that incredibly many modern messengers don’t even have.
Escargot is nothing new, but it may be that you, like many of us at Genbeta, have never heard of it. And if you want to give yourself a nostalgic walk installing the software in Windows 10, It is very simple.
ImportantWe want to note that although Windows Defender did not detect any problems with the installer, in VirusTotal, one of the 59 antivirus engines that you can use to scan files, it did detect a Trojan in the Escargot installer. It could be a false positive, it could not be, on the Microsoft support website they have this Trojan in their database and it should be detected by Windows Defender, and in our tests nothing was detected. It is up to you to decide what to do with this information.
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A trip to the past
Escargot offers downloads in multiple languages, including Spanish. You just have to download any of the pre-patched versions of the application. Goes from MSN 5.0, up to WLM 8.5. The recommendation is to use the latter.
They also offer the unpatched versions and instructions on how to patch them yourself. There are also several extras, such as the emoticon creator, for example. Since Microsoft’s servers no longer work, you have to create a Escargot account, but it’s very simple.
You just have to use an email address and a password. That’s all you will need to log into Messenger and to add or have friends added. And the app is exactly the same one you were used to so many years ago, with buzzes, colors, different fonts, animated emoticons, freehand drawing, sending files, changing avatar, status, sending sounds, etc.
The only thing that does not work are the external services or those that were already offered from Microsoft’s servers, such as games and activities. But Escargot integrates other things, like Facebook itself and even YouTube within the same window of your friends list.
This reminder of all the good things about MSN Messenger makes us think about how Microsoft wasted the platform entirely, especially by never making the move to the mobile world in time.
It’s a bit unbelievable that such an old program has things that many modern messaging apps still don’t have, and all that potential thrown away is saddening. If you are interested in learning more about Escargot, the project is also hosted on GitLab.