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Microsoft Axing Messenger On March 15th 218

An anonymous reader writes with news that Microsoft is killing Messenger in favor of Skype. From the article: "Microsoft on Tuesday mass emailed its 100 million+ Messenger users to let them know that the service is officially being retired on March 15, 2013. On that date, all users will be migrated to Skype, which Microsoft acquired back in May 2011 for $8.5 billion. This means Messenger will be shut down in just 66 days. It will only keep working afterwards in mainland China, mainly because Skype is operated there by a local provider called TOM." Relatedly, an anonymous reader asks: "I am looking to build a Skype replacement for me and some friends and was wondering which languages you would use server side to handle all of the encrypted data streaming? I am thinking to use SIP on a centralized server (as NAT can be a pain to get through). The clients will use end-to-end encryption. Thoughts?" There are some alternatives already, for variable definitions of working.
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Microsoft Axing Messenger On March 15th

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  • Re:LOL alternatives (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Alain Williams ( 2972 ) <> on Wednesday January 09, 2013 @10:40AM (#42531695) Homepage
    Makes me wonder how much hidden government involvement there was; complete with back doors only available to ''friendly'' nations.
  • Axing on March 15? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by CajunArson ( 465943 ) on Wednesday January 09, 2013 @11:01AM (#42531931) Journal

    No No No, for the Ides of March you need to STAB messenger to death. We come here to bury Messenger, not to praise it!

  • Re:KUTMSN (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 09, 2013 @11:05AM (#42532007)

    I say we bring back IRC. Really wasn't it the best? No "like" button. No hipster wannabes eating up IP spaces and valuable bandwidth and if you happened to fine one just open up a copy of Nuke and deal with them the old fashion way.

  • Re:fickle (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ledow ( 319597 ) on Wednesday January 09, 2013 @11:19AM (#42532185) Homepage

    I started with a Hotmail account pre-2000, probably pre-1995 (don't know exactly, but long before I was in uni). Since then it has been an MSN account (where I started using Messenger), a Live account, a Microsoft account, and now it's taking over my Skype. Hell, even Windows 8 wanted me to log in using it and I refused - I haven't actually USED that account in YEARS.

    The problem I'm more worried about (rather than the bi-annual "upgrade your account to new account X" problem) is what about third-party clients? I have Pidgin plugged in with my messenger details, and presume that will stop. Honestly, that just means I'll stop using messenger and won't even notice - I still have plenty of alternatives and slowly ditched things in the past as they stopped letting me use them from third-party clients (I still have ICQ, AOL, MSN, YIM, Jabber, and even Facebook messengers plugged into my Pidgin).

    Fact is, I don't really care about running "your" software, just your backend service - and it's just not vital enough that I'd care. MS, in particular, has had a bad history with me and their client software - it's been pretty atrocious at points over the years and taking several backward steps (I can't remember the last time I successfully did a messenger file transfer, the various takeovers meant it got more and more plastered with adverts, etc. and video-over-MSN was always a joke in comparison).

    Steam also wants me to message my friends that way - er, no - because it's just a sub-standard chat client that I have a bucket of and numerous alternatives with more features that don't need me and my friends to be running Steam all the time to use them. Like Skype, I won't have it running "just in case" someone wants to talk to me, and hence they won't use it as much either (if Skype offered a proper API that other programs could use, Pidgin etc. would jump on it).

    Skype is probably MS's biggest online asset at the moment. It's really quite a powerful tool and I was half expecting it to go the other way (e.g. Skype functionality appearing only in Messenger and Windows, etc.). I now honestly give it a handful of months before I abandon it except to keep the account live. And that really means that Skype will surge as everyone does this "upgrade" and then die when people learn how atrocious the client is again.

    Granted, I'm a freeloader - I've never paid Skype a penny or any of the MSN/Live/Microsoft etc. services. But the fact is that I haven't run an "official" client in nearly a decade now, and the bit that messenger does can be done on any number of third-party clients. Messing with that just means I move on to something else - hell, I even have my own domain's Jabber setup ready to roll if it comes to it. It's even loaded into my Pidgin and anyone can use it for free.

    I don't see what they seek to achieve, to be honest. I won't suddenly start using MS services that I haven't used in a decade (the IM client kept the account open nicely, though). I won't suddenly start using MS features through Skype. And I won't tolerate Skype being broken by MS upgrades without just moving on or sacrificing its functionality entirely. And they won't "save" anything by merging accounts because they still can't shut down in China, they still have to track all those accounts, they still have to pay for separate authentication mechanisms in the various software for years to come, etc.

    Kill messenger. Not much will happen, but - as pointed out - people will be a bit more wary about what they sign up for in the future. Like the Google accounts lately that have had features taken from them, etc. - we'll just move on as soon as something affects us personally.

    It would be sad to see my ancient Hotmail/MSN account go, if for no other reason that I'm impressed it's still running (I never check it and only get spam and the last "proper" email in it was from 2005, I think, before I moved them all out when they started to cut out Outlook Express integration with it - which was the only free way

  • Re:LOL alternatives (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Joce640k ( 829181 ) on Wednesday January 09, 2013 @11:37AM (#42532445) Homepage

    Does skype allow you to paste images/screenshots like MSN does?

  • Re:LOL alternatives (Score:4, Interesting)

    by ozmanjusri ( 601766 ) <> on Wednesday January 09, 2013 @01:22PM (#42533835) Journal

    aliens came down, anal probed you and made you forget.

    (Un)fortunately this time the anal probing is just part of the regular Microsoft customer experience.

    Microsoft is re-engineering these supernodes to make it easier for law enforcement to monitor calls by allowing the supernodes to not only make the introduction but to actually route the voice data of the calls as well. In this way, the actual voice data would pass through the monitored servers and the call is no longer secure. It is essentially a man-in-the-middle attack, and it is made all the easier because Microsoft -– who owns Skype and knows the keys used for the service’s encryption -– is helping. []

Perfection is acheived only on the point of collapse. - C. N. Parkinson