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 http://ideas.live.com.
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?