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Windows Messenger and .Net

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  • User profile image

    I am interested in making an application for my work which is basically a Remote Support Centre.

    The reason for writing this is that the functionality for Asking For Remote Assistance in XP is not enough to work in an environment where the user will not know the "experts", which experts are online and you want the users to only get Remote Assistance from an expert.  As an added catch, the users do not have Outlook or OE and they do not have Passport accounts.

    At the moment, what I have is basically a Call Management System which allows the user to submit a call asking for help giving details, and then the expert can then Offer Remote Assistance to the user on their system.

    What I would really like to do is to extend the functionality so that instead of only being able to communicate via Remote Assistance, the expert could also communicate via Windows Messenger to get more details before doing a Remote Assist.  My initial thought was this wasn't going to be possible without at least a passport account but I got thinking about this "Offer Remote Assistance" option.  In order to offer Remote Assistance, all you need is to be an allowed expert (set via Group Policy) and put in the name of computer/IP address and user ID to activate the Remote Assistance process.  Functionality which uses Windows Messenger and also brings up a chat window similar to Windows Messenger on both machines.

    So, my question is, is there a way to send a Windows Messenger message to a remote user on their workstation in C# or VB.NET to invoke a Windows Messenger chat session without using Passport?

    Also, any advice on this application or an alternative approach to what I am trying to achieve is welcome!  I haven't ruled out I am missing something blatantly obvious...


  • User profile image

    MSN doesnt require to have a passport account.

  • User profile image

    Many thanks for that link.  I'll investigate that...


  • User profile image

    You could use MS Office Live Communications Server and run your own authenticating and session initiation server, so that instead of authenticating with Passport your users would be authenticating with your own server. This only works with Windows Messenger and not MSN Messenger and also requires Active Directory so users need LCS activated AD accounts.

    There is also an LCS server API that you could probably use to populate a users contacts list with an official tech support contact for remote assistance.

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