Messenger Links

So the big news from MacBU this week was the release of Messenger for
Mac 6
. This was an important release for us because it was our first
actual application that was shipped as a universal binary. For those
keeping track, we previously shipped
shipped some universal drivers, and the Microsoft Entourage.mdimporter
file that we shipped as part of our 10.2.3 update last spring was
universal, so we're getting there. In any case, hats off to the team for
getting this out. Some of the new features in Messenger for Mac 6

  • Universal binary
  • Yahoo Messenger contacts
  • Custom emoticons
  • Split windows
  • Spell check
  • Status messages
  • What I'm Listening To

Nicole over at the Inside Windows Live Messenger blog posted a little
conversation between Windows Live Messenger and Messenger for
Mac. Check it out here:

Messenger for Mac vs Windows Live Messenger

MM says:

    Hi, I am Messenger for Mac

WLM says:

    and, I am Windows Live Messenger (WLM)
You look great, what has changed?

MM says:

    Thank you, I just got a makeover I am now 6.0!

Be sure to read the whole thing. 🙂

Other sites around the net picked up on the new version of
Messenger. These
include Eric
, ActiveWin, MSTechToday, O'Reilly
(Daniel has some comments and suggestions, which we'll
TUAW(Scott's comments are noted also.), and
finally Paul
(One of my favorite Mac bloggers) gave it a shout.

Of course, one of the big question left is about when we're going to
get Audio/Visual support? Mary addressed that question in the MacMojo
in this post.

Finally, I wanted to mention that Apple released Update 10.4.8 on Friday and it included a couple of fixes for Office for Mac. These
fixes are:

  • Resolves an issue for Microsoft Word in which Word might stop
    responding when saving a file that uses certain OpenType fonts.
  • Resolves an issue for Microsoft PowerPoint in which the display
    resolution might not change as expected after switching from a
    PowerPoint presentation to a different application via

A big thanks to Apple for getting these updates out there.

A commenter
at TUAW noticed a significant performance increase in Word
after installing the 10.4.8 update and it seems really fast after the
update on my Macs also, though I haven't done any benchmarks on it. If you haven't
installed the update yet, check your Word launch times before and
after and see if there's any difference.

Have a nice week!

Comments (22)

  1. Your remark about split windows is driving me nuts. 🙂

    Where, how? "Must click" (Insert growling sound and the sloshing of zombies walking.)

  2. PatrickQG says:

    "You look great"? Are they talking about the same Messenger for Mac that I tried out after the announcement? With the enormous brushed metal windows? Eh?

  3. Indrek says:

    Generally, great work. But there’s always room for improvement. 🙂

    I guess I’m one of the few guys who will not cry over the missing A/V features. The things that bug me are far smaller and hopefully can be fixed in the 6.0.1, released next week. 🙂

    1) The biggest annoyance of them all – in 6.0, my (little bit modified) US International keyboard layout does not work anymore. Up to 5.1, I couldn’t make umlaut characters (õäöü) when changing my screen name by clicking on it in the contact list, but in the 6.0 this plague has propagated to the main chat window. 🙁 They work when I use the Estonian keyboard layout which has those letters as separate keys, but using US International, which means having a "dead key" and pressing §a for ä, after pressing §, nothing happens (like it should), but when pressing a, a regular a appears. Please look into it and fix. If sending the .keyboard file helps, let me know where to send it to.

    2) Mood messages – great. However, if they are long enough to not fit into the contact list, there seems to be no way to see the end of them rather than to resize the contact list. Which, because I keep the list on the right side of my screen, means that I first have to drag it to the left in order to be able to resize it from the bottom right corner.

    2.5) Can you put the mood message in the chat window?

    3) Status shown in the dock icon – it was there until 5.0 came along. I know it’s probably because you can now have different statuses under WLM and LCS, but can you pleaaase put it back for this majority of users who only use WLM (that is, when only one account is used)?

    About the tabbed chatting everyone else is crying about – if you decide to implement that, please put in a checkbox to turn it off. Tabs can be great, but so many programs have got it wrong for my personal taste.


  4. john vogel says:

    I woulbn’t even consider using a messenger without AV support. It would be a waste of time to download it>

  5. opensourcefan says:

    Well here’s a problem.

    System requirements

    Operating system: Mac OS X version 10.3.9 or later

    What? Not interested in servicing people who 1. Can’t afford/don’t want to spend money updating their OSs? or 2. Don’t believe in applying every little update (i.e. X.x.9) because of the inevitable new bugs that get introduced?

    I’ll keep using Fire for my <10.3.9 OS X and a different on on my Mac OS 8 machines for those very few PC people I chat with on MSN b/c they can’t cope with installing YIM or AIM. Out of choice.

    I think your system requirements are very short sighted. There are many people in this world who get access to the internet and it’s services by using old or handmedown computers. Thank goodness for opensource alternatives.

  6. Nick says:

    I’d love to see iSight (A/V) support…

  7. RMansfield says:

    Is there any way to add a Messenger for Mac status to a personal website? I have icons for iChat and Yahoo messenger which show viewers whether I am online or not. I’d like to add one for Messenger for Mac if it’s possible. Any help would be appreciated.

  8. readymade says:

    Very cool. Messenger used to be the best IM client on the Mac for non-Latin Mac-Windows communication (until Google came up their Jabber servers to iChat). I still use it occasionally, though AV will definitely make me use it more.

    Does this version integrate to Address Book? Most of my contacts didn’t bother to spell their full names, and I would really like to see the mugshots I have assigned.

  9. It’s not a lack of interest.  If it were just interest, I can’t imagine what our OS conversation would look like.  Imagine 5 or 10 or 15 absolute Mac geeks hanging out in a room arguing relative merits of each version of the OS.  I’d probably spend the whole time hiding under the table.  

    On one hand, we’d have some people saying that we should support only the absolute bleeding edge ’cause all the cool stuff happens on the bleeding edge and why should we ever pay attention to those slackers who aren’t downloading versions of the OS that aren’t actually out yet?!!!.  Then we’d have someone else saying that of course we should support absolutely everything because OS a.b.c was my favourite and I never really did like OS a.d.e, so let’s get both of those and everything in between and probably a couple of versions before the earliest of those so that we’ve got everyone covered.

    I can’t imagine what kind of circles that conversation would go around in if the decision were only one of interest.  Although I’d probably learn a lot more about the ins and outs of the various versions of the OS than I could ever hope to know.  (Actually, what really scares me is that I’m quite certain that I would actually become someone who has a strong opinion about whether OS a.b.c is better than a.b.c+1.  I know my own levels of geekery.)  There’s a part of me that’s laughing at this mental image of my various teams arguing over the relative merits of each release of the OS, but there’s a part of me that’s quivering in fear that it could happen and I’m tempting fate by discussing it at all.  

    Aside from interest, what are the driving forces behind this kind of decision?  Resources.  We have a small team working on Messenger, so we have to spend our resources wisely.  Each version of the OS that we say we support is a version of the OS that we have to test.  We can’t just say that we think it’ll work on OS 10.x.y and OS 10.x.y-1 because we tested it on x.y and x.y-1 isn’t really all that different so we don’t need to be worried about it.  

  10. Generally a great release! The first MSN client (other than memory crazy Mercury) to have Personal Message support!

    There’s only a few small things that I think would be a nice addition to bring Messenger 6.x up to speed with the client on Windows. Let me exclude A/V from these features, since there are still plenty of other applications that are devoted to this (like Skype) that most people prefer to use.

    1) Showing Display pics in the contact list. Not really necessary, but would be a nice feature to have. This also entails being able to view personal messages on a second line, below the actual name.

    2) The ‘view profile’ option when you right click on a contact should probably specify that it’s their ‘space’, so perhaps rename it to ‘View Live Space’.

    3) Mouse over info! It’s very nice to be able to mouse over someone’s name in the contact list and see info about them (particularly their personal message). This is similar to clicking on the image or status icon in the Windows version.

    That’s about it for features! While it seems to be easy on RAM, it’s not so easy on CPU cycles – especially when closing chat windows… something I’ve always been puzzled with. Perhaps efficiency (at least while closing chat windows!) could be improved a bit!

    Thanks for the great release MS Mac team!


  11. Territan says:

    People are always complaining about software (not just Messenger) not being feature-complete with their wildest fantasies. And it’s hard to tell what features will become popular without first seeing implementations of them.

    Have you considered devising a plug-in system for Messenger?

    Oh PLEASE don’t laugh…

    An extensible system (and plug-ins seem like the easiest way to do that) would allow you to develop new features for the existing application without requiring a full build. You could code the basic application, and then write in those features you’re not sure people want as fully functional afterthoughts. It would also allow third-party developers to add in functionality that you didn’t think of or didn’t want to risk developing for.

    And who knows? It could lead to bigger things. Macromedia couldn’t have gotten Netscape or Microsoft to rewrite their browsers to show Flash; a plug-in was their route to the stars. (Of course Macromedia is now a burp stuck in Adobe’s gullet, so maybe there’s a lesson to be learned there too.)

  12. Virgilio says:

    PROXY support doesn’t work, is it normal??

  13. Phil Bowell says:

    This is just a quick question.  Generally I like the new client, apart from the lack of tabbed chatting one other thing I have noticed that would be a great help is support for Applescript.  This would improve the clients integration with OS X alot.  I use Quicksilver and would dearly like to use Applescript with MSN to make it easier to chat etc.  Also integration with Address book would be nice as well.  I also wonder if you have considered giving us the option to customise the layout of our contact lists?  It woould be much better if the Personal Messages appeared under the nickname and if groups with noone on line disappeared from view only to return when someone logs on!

  14. rizzo320 says:


    I read your comments, and they don’t seem to make much sense.  I’m not the biggest fan of the requirements either, but a minimum of 10.3.9 is needed for most Universal Binary based applications to work.  Most also work on older versions of 10.3, but there may be instability.

    If you look at the other existing PPC only products from Microsoft, most of them support some version of 10.2.x as it’s earliest operating system.  That’s a better compatibility record then most Apple products.

  15. Dhun Phutthakosai says:

    hi im am currently using mac os x 10.2.3 and msn does not work can someon please send me the msn messenger download link to this email address thanks heaps

  16. Dhun Phutthakosai says:

    thanks heaps.

  17. Dara says:

    that msn is relly bad.. it wont let me chat to my contacts and wen they do it shuts off by itself.. relly crap… buts its prob the way i set it up.. any1 want to help me.. cuss im kind of confused

  18. Hellyeah says:

    logging into Microsoft Messenger 6.0.x is really slowwwww….

Skip to main content