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Access to MSN Spaces in China

Many people have said that their MSN Space blog is inaccessible or experiences diffculties in connection, including Nina Wu, sister of detained blogger and Global Voices colleague Hao Wu, with many MSN bloggers confirming the problem (1,2).

According to this article, the inaccessiblity of MSN Space lies in Live.com. Mircosoft change its .NET Passport login process into Live.com, this required Chinese users to redirect to live.com to sign in their credentials and Live.com is probably blocked in China. So all the MSN related websites have been inaccessible during recent weeks.

This post also provides some other means to login and continue use MSN sites without running a proxy as listed below:

  • using https protocol: click here and login
  • using the original .NET Passport service: click here and using Messenger 7.0 version to access Hotmail and MSN Space

Tests show two things: first, after using above techniques to access them, MSN and Hotmail services are returning to normal; second, Live.com is only accessible with a proxy like that of Tor.

Several days before the block stopped for an interval but resumed just within few days. It's still unclear whether this problem is due to outage of servers of Microsoft's China Branch. With the recent visit by President Hu Jintao to Microsoft and Bill Gates the block seem quite unreasonable. No confirmation from Microsoft is available at present.

1 comment

  • Very helpful. The block of Live.com is a perplexing thing, considering how white collar Chinese seem to be flocking to MSN Spaces.

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