Live Messenger – How to stop and remove those annoying adverts!

Do you, like me, get annoyed with the adverts that come up on Live Messenger?  I mean come on! All I did was move the mouse over that area accidentally and suddenly I have a bigger version of the advert getting in the way of what I wanted to do!

SOLUTION
There are several solutions to remove or stop the ads from Live Messenger, some of which include downloading and installing new software (add ons for Messenger) but I’m just going to mention one.  It involves editing a file called hosts and adding one line into the file, saving and restarting the PC.

FILE LOCATION
First of all here is the location of the file you need to edit:

C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc\

(Your PC might be slightly different but I doubt it)

The name of the file is called ‘hosts’ and it doesn’t have a file extension (such as .txt for text files)

FILE PERMISSIONS
On Windows 7 and I think Windows Vista, you will first of all need to give the user you are logged on as the permission to have Full Control of that file.  The best way of doing that is to go to the start menu, find ‘Notepad’, then instead of clicking notepad in the normal way to run the program, do a RIGHT-click and then choose Run as Administrator.  You can then find the hosts file within the Notepad program and you will be running it as Administrator.

THEN SIMPLY
Open the file using Windows Notepad and add the following line to the file after all the other stuff in there (don’t delete anything else).

127.0.0.1        rad.msn.com

Save the file and Exit.  If at this point you get a Save as box come up, then you haven’t dealt with the permissions thing I mentioned above.

FINALLY
Restart the PC and sign in to Messenger and hey presto! No more annoying adverts!

EXPLANATION
If you need to know: What is happening is that we are telling Messenger to look for the adverts at the IP address of 127.0.0.1 which happens to be your PC!  Of course, it won’t be able to find the adverts at that IP address and therefore won’t display them! Simple!

DISCLAIMER
Don’t come running to me if you break something! It’s a simple change to an important file. If you delete, rename or do something else stupid – then that’s your fault ;-) Of course, just ask me and I will help you do this tweak :-)