Windows Live Essentials is a free downloadable software pack available for users of Windows XP, Vista and 7. This software greatly enhances Windows with tools for instant messaging, sending and receiving email, photo editing and organizing, making home movies, backing up your personal files and more. Windows Live Essentials requires a Windows Live account to use all of its features. Windows Live Essentials 2011 is the version to download if you have Windows Vista or 7. There is also a version of Windows Live Essentials designed especially for Windows XP.
Windows Live Photo Gallery
Windows Live Photo Gallery is available for Windows XP, Vista and 7. This software has easy-to-use photo importing, organizing and editing tools. You can correct the exposure and color in your photos, both manually and automatically. You can also correct red eye in Windows Live Photo Gallery. Using Windows Live Photo Gallery, you can easily upload your photos to websites such as Flickr, Facebook, YouTube and SkyDrive. The latest version of Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 for Windows Vista and 7 also supports facial recognition, which can help you to organize your photographs quickly and easily.
Windows Live Movie Maker
Windows Live Movie Maker, which is available only for Windows Vista and 7, takes the features of Windows Movie Maker to a new level. In Windows Vista, you can install use both Movie Maker and Live Movie Maker at the same time. Windows Live Movie Maker has a simplified interface in which you can add your video clips and music directly to the workspace. The menus above the workspace let you quickly take a snapshot, add titles, captions, credits and effects. There is also an area in the toolbar to post your movie directly to Windows SkyDrive, Facebook, YouTube and Flickr.
Windows Live Messenger
You can install Windows Live Messenger in Windows XP, Vista or 7. Windows Live Messenger supports advanced features such as live video chat, game play, photo sharing and social networking updates from popular websites such as MySpace and Facebook. Windows Live Messenger 2011 supports video chat in HD if you have an HD webcam.
Windows Live Mesh
Windows Live Mesh is a program that will let you sync your files between computers or on Windows Live SkyDrive in Windows Vista or 7. With Windows Live Mesh, you get 5 gigabytes (GB) of free syncing storage space on the Windows Live SkyDrive website. File syncing is similar to backup, except that whenever you change a file on your computer, the updated version is automatically saved to the remote computer or website. With your Windows Live ID, you can access the files in your SkyDrive synced storage from any computer.
These are only a handful of the programs available with Windows Live Essentials. For more information, visit the Windows Live website.
For more information about Windows, read How to Troubleshoot Computer Startup Problems in Windows XP and Vista.
“Windows Live Essentials 2011,” Live.com
“Windows Live Essentials for Windows XP,” Live.com