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March 14, 2006

Free Windows Live Family Safety Settings announced

Posted by David Hunter at 10:15 AM ET.

Press release:

Microsoft Corp. today announced plans to offer a new safety service, called Windows Live™ Family Safety Settings, as part of the company’s ongoing efforts to help protect families online through user education, industry cooperation and technology innovation. Family Safety Settings is being designed to go a step further than traditional parental controls and will help consumers better guard themselves and their families against online content and communications they might find inappropriate.

The service will help enhance customer safety by making family protection tools free, widely available and flexible through the Web-based Microsoft® Windows Live service, complementing related technologies from Microsoft, such as family settings to be available in Windows Vista™ that will help families customize their experience with both PC- and Web-based protection. Family Safety Settings will include content filtering for the Web, contact list management tools for communication services, and online activity reports. Service features will begin rolling out in phases worldwide throughout 2006 and will become available to customers using Windows® XP Service Pack 2 and Windows Vista.

Family Safety Settings is currently in limited, private beta testing in the United States. Web content filtering and reporting capabilities are expected to be available to Windows Live customers in select U.S. and international markets in early summer with added contact management functionality rolling out later this year. Those wanting more information should visit, or sign up for the Windows Live Family Safety Settings waiting list by e-mailing

There’s also a press Q&A here. This is mostly as rumored with the addition of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) providing age-based guidelines. As I observed previously, say goodbye to the existing players in this niche. The real question is whether there will be a need to say hello to any antitrust watchdogs.

Filed under Antitrust, General Business, Governmental Relations, Legal, Microsoft, OS - Client, Windows Live, Windows Live OneCare Family Safety, Windows Vista

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3 Responses to “Free Windows Live Family Safety Settings announced”

  1. Ballmer spills to Fortune -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] There was no word on whether he used Windows Live Family Safety Settings to enforce the Google edict, but his comment did rouse some amusement amongst commentators. [...]

  2. Microsoft starts beta of Windows Live OneCare Family Safety -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] (Via Neowin) MsgAddict reports that Microsoft is get ready for a restricted beta of ts beta of Windows Live OneCare Family Safety: Microsoft has begun to send out Windows Live OneCare Family Safety Beta invitations to members of the Windows Live Butterfly team, who will help to evaluate and test the new application. If the name is unfamiliar it looks like Microsoft has rebranded Windows Live Family Safety Settings, their parental control freebie. Filed under Beta and CTP, Windows Live, Windows Live Family Safety Settings, Microsoft   [Permalink] [TrackBack] [...]

  3. Microsoft launches trial version of Windows Live OneCare Family Safety -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] The rumored restricted beta of Windows Live OneCare Family Safety turned out to be a public trial offer of the parental control software for Windows XP: You might have heard back in March that we were doing some limited beta testing on parts of a new, free family safety service called Windows Live Family Safety Settings. The features we tested earlier this year represented just a portion of the full service we’re making available today, and we’re excited to announce the release of our new Windows Live OneCare Family Safety public beta available in the US through Hit the link for more details, but for now the trial is USA only. And as surmised, a little rebranding has gone on since the original announcement which isn’t all that bad in this case since this is PC software like Windows Live OneCare and not Web-based like most of the rest of the Windows Live family. Also like OneCare, I would expect that this would eventually be a fee-based service, although there is no mention of that and the above clip has the magic word, “free.” Is it too soon to wave goodbye to the little software companies trying to make a buck in this market or do we wait until Vista comes out with similar functionality built-in? Filed under OS – Client, Windows Vista, Beta and CTP, Windows Live, Windows Live OneCare Family Safety, Microsoft   [Permalink] [TrackBack] [...]

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