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Show them who's boss with a proxy

    If you're having trouble using MSN Messenger (or any other program that allows http proxy configuration for that matter), then it's time to use a public HTTP proxy. Situations where you can't use Messenger are most commonly in the commercial or educational Internet locations. This is due to the fact they don't want you to use internet 'chatting' software or anything else, so they set-up their firewall to block all ports except for port 80 and 8080. These ports are used by Internet page browsing software (Internet Explorer, Mozilla etc). This can understandably be a pain when you reach the height of boredom and messenger point blank refuses to sign in. It comes as no surprise that messenger cant sign in if the port it is trying to use (1863) is not open\blocked. The simple and most effective way to get around this problem is to set messenger up to use a HTTP Proxy (a remote computer on the Internet that uses port 80 or 8080 and allows users to connect to and request web pages and other connections (such as messenger).

    The fist thing to do is download MSN Messenger if you haven't already got it. You can tell if you have it by clicking Start > Run and typing msmsgs or msnmsgr and hitting OK. If a nasty message appears, go to www.microsoft.com and download MSN Messenger. You can also tell just by looking in the system tray (located at the bottom right of your screen) if messenger is running already. See the image below for an example:

    The icon circled in red is the Messenger system tray icon

    Once you have installed and found Messenger, you need to make sure you are on the main window of messenger. If you can see the Tools menu, then it is already open, otherwise double click the messenger system tray icon (above) to open the main window. From there, click Tools and then Options.

    Make sure the options window matches the screen shot above. On older versions of messenger, the Realm box does not appear. This does not matter. You do not need to enter any information into any boxes apart from Server and Port. Click the OK button and restart messenger, or log off then back on, or restart your computer (Sometimes simply signing in then out will not work). If you want to use a different server than the one in the screen shot, then look at the table below. It lists some public HTTP Proxy servers that you can use with messenger. Ensure that the Port is 80 or 8080 depending on what server you use from the list. You can click the Whois link next to the proxy server to find who the IP address is allocated by. By using an HTTP Proxy Server, you also have the advantage of anonymous IP. (Don't worry, my mother doesn't understand either). You will lose the ability to perform some tasks such as File Transfer within Messenger when using an HTTP Proxy.

Public HTTP Proxy List
Server Port Country WhoIs 
ip66-105-112-20.z112-105-66.customer.algx.net 80 United States Whois
24.52.22.15 8080 United States Whois
63.214.252.57 80 United States Whois
168.209.246.151 80 South Africa Whois
195.173.88.7 80 Great Britain (UK) Whois
213.38.202.34 8080 Great Britain (UK) Whois
62.81.33.25 80 Spain Whois
217.156.79.193 80 Romania Whois
dup-200-66-191-1.prodigy.net.mx 80 Mexico Whois
212.68.72.82 8080 Germany Whois
193.188.97.152 80 Bahrain Whois
210.12.77.130 80 China Whois
212.240.95.195 8080 Great Britain (UK) Whois
cbl-jbishop3.hs.earthlink.net 80 United States Whois

    More Servers

 
©Matthew Hall 2003


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