Are you having LiveId/downloading issues?

There have been multiple posts by people that all claim something similar:  “…I am properly signed in and have a LiveId (formerly known as Passport) but all of the download links are unavailable to me…”.  So far, my response to this problem has been “…clear your cookies, close your browser and try again…” – However,  this was intended to be a “…once in a long, long time…” fix – not a “…you must do this every time…” fix.


There are several people (John, Bobby, Eric, et al) who are reporting that they have to clear their cookies every time in order to initiate a download – which is not ideal.  I have been able to reproduce a LiveId/download bug in my development environment that is very close to this, but I’m unable to reproduce the reported issue in our production environment.  So I’m asking for your help.


What I need: If you are able to reproduce this problem consistently, I would like one of two things:

1.       Document your step-by-step process that reproduces the issue and post them as a response to this blog

2.       Log into the blog, and click on the email link on my profile page and provide your contact information so I can contact you privately for your step-by-step process


Since I can’t reproduce the issue, I’m beginning to wonder if there is a particular sequence of steps that must be done to cause the bug to activate, or a browser setting or something else altogether.


Thanks again for your help!



Comments (21)

  1. joao says:

    yes, i can't download or view keys BEING signed in and... yes, they are the cookies.

    what i do now is I created a BAT file named MSDN.bat which erases my cookies directory...

    when I want to go to MSDN I CLOSE all browsers and then run my MSDN.bat file... I sign in and then ALL IS FINE.

    but it doesn't ALWAYS occur. I suppose it happens when you guys are providing a new download, that appears to damage the frigging cookie...


    [Chris responds: Thanks for the feedback - but your post doesn't provide the steps needed to recreate the issue in the first place.  I can tell you that our adding new files does not damage the cookie in any way.  If you like, provide me your contact info and I'd be happy to contact you to try and troubleshoot the issue.]

  2. Michael Tissington says:

    Open browser and enter as url

    msdn shows me a logged in with my correct name

    Click on the Downloads link on the right cycles about 6 times before aborting.

    Yes, its that simple!

    If after going to I click on the top right link to sign out and then click the downloads link I correctly get prompted to sign in and it is successful.

    [Chris responds: Michael, would you mind contacting me privately (sign in, go to my profile and there is an email link).  I'd like to get you connected with our authentication team to capture some browser traces to better track the issue.]

  3. TadMcClellan says:

    I have the same problem as Michael Tissington

  4. Len Vitello says:

    I am having the same problem as Michael Tissington as well. Same steps, same problem

    [Chris responds: Please sign into the blog and contact me via mail privately with your contact details.  I'll have you collect some browser trace logs and I will forward them to our authentication team for analysis.]

  5. Toby says:

    I have roughly the same problem as Michael Tissington, the difference being that MSDN doesn't ever seem to acknowledge that I'm logged in. recognizes me as logged in but MSDN never does. It also seems to work under Firefox 3.1 but not IE7. I can't download items under firefox but it at least acknolwedges that I'm  logged in and lets me get to files.

    [Chris responds: Please sign into the blog and contact me via mail privately with your contact details.  I'll have you collect some browser trace logs and I will forward them to our authentication team for analysis.]

  6. Eric Beaudry says:

    Same here, cleared the cookies and now I'm able to enter. This is a reccuring problem and everytime it happens I have to clear my cookies.

    Not that great IMHO

    [Chris responds: Please sign into the blog and contact me via mail privately with your contact details.  I'll have you collect some browser trace logs and I will forward them to our authentication team for analysis.]

  7. Kunal says:

    For Partners this has been a nightmare, I've removed people from Primary, Secondary and Third technical contact, and they are still able to download, however the new three people assigned the role, who should be able to download, get an expired message when they attached. Calling customer service lead to extremely rude CSRs. They said "TRY IN 5 Days". Gee. Thanks.

    [Chris responds: This doesn't sound like a MSDN/TechNet/Expression download page issue – but more like an issue regarding authentication data flowing from the World Wide Licensing systems.  If you are having trouble downloading from our pages, please sign into the blog and mail me privately.  I'll contact you for further details.]

  8. SalD'Amico says:

    I am having the exact same problem and have been for a while but thought it was just my work machine.

    I have the same problem from multiple machines.

    I type in

    I click on any of the choices on the right side - manage subscription/look at keys...

    It cycles trying to go to the page then I get an error page telling me there is an issue with the site.

    I've tried logging out and back in with no luck.

    [Chris responds: Please sign into the blog and contact me via mail privately with your contact details.  I'll have you collect some browser trace logs and I will forward them to our authentication team for analysis.]

  9. Dave Walker says:

    I goto to

    I click on "Subscriptions" on the top menu, then I click on "downloads and product keys" in the box at the right.

    Then I have to log in.  and I do.

    Then I click on Subscriber downloads and product keys at the top of the page.

    My browser locks up.  and sometimes, but not always, I eventually get an error dialog message that says "We aplogiize for this inconvenience.  Internet Explorer must close."


    [Chris responds: Please sign into the blog and contact me via mail privately with your contact details.  I'll have you collect some browser trace logs and I will forward them to our authentication team for analysis.]


  10. Owen says:

    I cannot log in at all. Loops several time, then quits saying there's either an error or this site doesn't work with live-id....?

  11. Mike Poe says:

    Here's the steps I take:

    1.  Go to (tried all these steps in IE6, IE7, and Firefox

    2.  Click sign-in (in upper right corner)

    3.  Enter password for LiveID in the window that pops up, and slick Sign In

    4.  Click "Downloads and Product Keys - VST Suite (VL) in upper right (My MSDN Subscription)

    5.  Now, at 11:12PM PDT, my browser seems to be hanging after step 4...  Read on for what happened earlier today, as best as I can remember it...

    6.  Click "Operating Systems", then click "Windows XP" in the left hand menu

    7.  Find the Windows XP with Service Pack3, Retail for x86, and click the download icon on the far right.

    8.  Get an error saying something like the "the resource is unavailable" or "not found" or something like this.

    9.  Tried this a few times with the same result, tried a different OS (Win2008 Server), same error

    10.  Thought my subscription expired, since I got it a year and 3 days ago.

    11.  Contacted my internal MSDN person, and they sent me my subscription ID, but it was the same as my previous one.  Questioned her about it and she said my current ID still shows as active.

    12.  Tried re-adding the subscription, logging in/out a couple times, different browsers/machines/locations, but no different luck.


  12. P.R. says:

    I've tried everything (or so it seems)... Here's what I've done so far:

    1. signed out by using the link on page

    2. cleared all my cookies

    3. cleared all other temporary files too

    4. closed all my browsers

    5. signed out from Live Messenger

    6. exited from Live Messenger

    7. checked from task manager that not one Iexplore, Ieuser or Messenger process is alive

    8. opened up internet explorer by start -> run -> iexplore

    9. the page loaded ok, so i click on "Click here to access your benefits"

    10. the browser starts to load something, but never finishes the loading (once i even waited for 30 minutes, still nothing)

    11. repeated all of the above steps and tried with firefox explorer

    12. when clicking on "Click here to access your benefits" link, firefox will give this error message: "Redirect Loop: Redirection limit for this URL exceeded.  Unable to load the requested page.  This may be caused by cookies that are blocked. If accepting the site's cookies does not resolve the problem, it is probably a server configuration issue and not your computer."

    Here are some variations of the above steps that I have tried:

    13. i tried repeating all of the above steps with Internet Explorer again, after adding * and * to my Trusted Sites but that did not help either

    14. i've tried the above steps with leaving Live Messenger running, but that doesn't help either

    15. i've tried the above steps after uninstalling Live Sign-In Assistant but that didn't help either (i have still left Live Messenger installed, but will try to get rid of it soon to try logging in once again)

    16. i've tried the above steps with also adding a step "7-b" which is to reboot the computer before opening Internet Explorer again

    17. i've also tried to not click on "Click here to access your benefits" but trying to sign in first by using "Sign in" at the upper-right-hand corner of the window (this will open a new popup and I am able to login succesfully, but the subscription management will still go into an infinite redirection loop)

    18. i've also upgraded from IE7 to IE8 but that didn't help at all

    Here are some issues that *might* be related, but they *should not be* related in my opinion:

    - I frequently use different Live accounts with Messenger (but for MSDN subscriptions, i only have one account that I use and the other accounts shouldn't bother it)

    - I frequently change my browser's language preference (but this shouldn't be linked in any way to my Live account)

    - I'm trying to access my MSDN subscription when VPN'ing to my company network, and I've tried using MSDN subscriptions from both my laptop with VPN turned "on" and "off", and even tried accessing MSDN subscriptions from a company server after first establishing a remote desktop connection to it --- no difference in behaviour, the redirect loop happens every time regardless if i'm in VPN or not, and regardless of the computer I'm using (i've also got two laptops here, tried with both)

    Next steps that I'm gonna try is to uninstall Live Messenger -> clear my ie cache -> reboot -> cross my fingers ...

  13. Fredrik von Schmalensée says:

    I've got the same issue as the above...

    Can't reach the downloads... Really need to get to there asap...


    Wouldn't it be better to post the solution here..? (Or fix this issue - it's been around for quite some time now...)


  14. Klaus Enevoldsen says:

    I have a similar problem, the company that I'm working for has changed their subscription, so I have to associate the subscription with my Live ID, in IE6, IE7 and IE8 beta it just hangs, but Firefox and Safari comes with a message like this:

    Safari can’t open the page.

    Too many redirects occurred trying to open “”. This might occur if you open a page that is redirected to open another page which then is redirected to open the original page.

    Is it the same problem?


  15. Ralph says:

    I'm not sure if it's related, but I can't download anything anymore either. The download links are OK, and the downloads are also added to the 'Microsoft File Transfer Manager', but I always get the message "The response from the web site is missing required information. This may be caused by client-side proxy restrictions". I have this problem at different ISP's, multiple machines and also at multiple version of windows (Vista and XP).

    [Chris responds: Yesterday (10/20/2008) there were issues downloading files.  The system was corrected and everything should be good to go again.  If you continue to have issues today, please sign into the blog and privately mail me.  I'd like to get your contact info so we can investigate the root cause of your failure.]

  16. Steve Gibson says:

    Hey when is Windows Home Server coming to MSDN? I mean it would be great to develop for - it screams to be developed for and dang I pay enough for MSDN....

    [Chris responds: I can confirm (based on the information that I have today) that Windows Home Server is coming to MSDN “soon”.  However, it won’t be in the October timeframe as Beho responded – but shortly thereafter (and, yes, I’ve been asked not to promise specific dates so “shortly thereafter” will have to do for now… J).]



  17. Ralph says:

    I solved my problem about the 'The response from the web site is missing'-message 🙂 At the file transfer manager, if I uncheck the option 'HTTPS' at Options | Connections, it works quite ok (still get the message once in a while though), with HTTPS checked I always  get the message and it won't download anything.

    [Chris responds: Yesterday (2008/10/20) the download system experienced an issue which caused downloads to fail for a period of about 3-4 hours.  If you have to do this every time, please log into the blog and email me with your contact info.  You should not have to do this and I'd like to get the issue identified and resolved.]

  18. Beho says:

    Steve: I read somewhere a little while back that WHS would be available some time in October. It looks like they have about a week left!

  19. P.R. says:

    Yeay! MSDN subscriptions seems to be working today! No redirect loop today 🙂

    [Chris responds: We released our October monthly release today.  This release should fix two of the four known issues that cause an infinite redirect with Windows Live. We are working on fixes for the two other known issues and will release those as quickly as possible.  I am still interested in hearing from anyone who can reproduce an infinite redirect – especially after today’s release.  Please sign in and contact me privately via my profile page and I’ll work with you to track down the issues.]

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