Windows Live Messenger error 81000306

I may have a happy smile on my face getting a new Windows Vista enabled Dell Vostro 200 computer system, and would have expected the various software like Windows Live Messenger to be installed and working without a hitch; unfortunately no. Instead it gave me an “error 81000306: you cannot sign in to Windows Live Messenger”. So I thought “Ok, let’s look through the troubleshooting guide and see if it would get it working.” And went through the whole process.

Alas no, all the troubleshooting didn’t work. And I was scratching my head. What could be the stumbling block that the Messenger program won’t work? The usual problem as provided by Microsoft were, firewall not configure to allow the program to connect, to clearing DNS resolver cache, to undoing the proxy and etc.

Oh, c’mon! This was a brand new PC! Can’t be! Like an obedient schoolboy, I went through each of the provided solution, but nada. If it was my anti-virus, I tried disabling it. Still no. So I though perhaps the McAfee anti-virus itself was conflicting (which was highly unlikely as my other PC was using similar set up), so I tried uninstalling the anti-virus. Still no go.

I went through all the solution again, and again. Still no. This was getting frustrating. Finally I decided to nuke the brand new Dell Vostro by doing a reinstallation using its Symantec DSR recovery process. It would mean re-installing all the software that I have labourously installed since getting the new PC. But I had to try it. I didn’t want to log on to MSN using the browser version or use other third party Instant Messenger program like Trillian or Meebo. Though they could connect flawlessly, but many features such as emoticons and picture icons were not available. Better use back the original software that it was designed for.

After blasting my Dell Vostro back to its baby state, the first I thing I did was to install Windows Live Messenger. Keeping my figures crossed, I keyed in my ID and password. Still no go. Arrrgh…! That really made me pulled my hair and reminded me that I needed a haircut.

Frustrated, I tried Googling for a solution hoping some third party might have an answer somewhere. Guess what? After some digging around I finally found the solution in the Microsoft Live website itself. How ironic, that it was somehow not link as part of the solution for “error 81000306”. How could Microsoft made such a boo-boo?

As usual there was a list of solution provided similar to the usual help pages except this one about the “Auto Tuning Networking” feature. Keying in the commands, I could log in to Windows Live Messenger instantly. Voila! It worked! Heaving a sigh for finally solving it, while wondering why Microsoft Live never put it as a part of the usual troubleshooting solution. I guess we will never know. Anyway it was finally working and working very fine indeed.

Well, if anybody was having the same problem as I, here are the steps. This solution only applies to Windows Vista:

If you are using Windows Vista, disable the Auto Tuning Networking feature:

.a. Click Start, click All Programs, click Accessories, and then right-click Command Prompt and choose Run as administrator.
.b. Click Continue when Windows requests permission to continue.
.c. At the command prompt, type the following command, and then press ENTER:

  netsh interface tcp set global autotuninglevel=disabled

Note: This command disables the Window Auto Tuning feature.

.d. After you disable the Auto Tuning Networking feature, verify if you are able to sign into Messenger.

If you are still not able to sign into Messenger then please re-enable this feature using the information below and then go to the next step.

.a. Re-enable the Auto Tuning Networking feature by typing the following command at the command prompt, and then pressing ENTER:

  netsh interface tcp set global autotuninglevel=normal

Note: This command enables Window Auto Tuning again so that you can take advantage of the network throughput performance increase it provides.

Reference source:
http://messenger-support.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!8B3F39C76A8B853F!13932.entry

And if this still didn’t solve your Windows Live Messenger error 81000306 login problem. I don’t know what else could help you out…

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5 Responses to “Windows Live Messenger error 81000306”

  1. legend says:

    oh my goodness. i have an exactly same problem as u… and i followed ur steps…and it works! haha! thanks to your provided information. 😉

  2. notyoubutme says:

    Thanks, fixed my problem.

    And I think my connection is a tiny inkling of a bit faster than before, thanks!

  3. Rashid says:

    it works when i disable tuning, but doesn’t when i re enable it.
    should i be afraid????!!!!

  4. Jeanette says:

    Saved me more hours of sc ratching my head thanks Jan I have saved you in my favourites 🙂

  5. andyclap says:

    Uhh? why did that work.

    Thanks anyway, took me two days of trying other things unsuccessfully before I actually tried this: I presumed no way does level 7 need to care about level 4. Guess I wrongly presumed Microsoft’s engineering department knew what they were doing. Somebody somewhere found a hack that would improve performance by fixing packet sizes to match the data, somebody somewhere else improved app performance by fixing data to match the packet size. Bang!

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