Using more than 1 Windows Live ID at a time…

Hotmail users, rejoice!

A comment that I get quite often is that it’s “not possible to user more than one Live ID at a time”; that is to say that you can’t be logged into Live@edu at the same time as being logged into Windows Live Hotmail. That’s half true. Let me explain…

WL-ID_v_rgbLive@edu can provide the great range of services that users get because it uses with Windows Live ID service as a means of authentication. Every single user gets a Live ID and this gives them access to all of the Windows Live services as well as Exchange Online.

Because Windows Live Hotmail users also have Live IDs they cannot be logged into Windows Live services at the same time as another account – whether that’s another Hotmail account, a Live@edu account or any other account associated with a Live ID; however, there are ways around this!

Option 1: Private browsing

Many web browsers today, including Windows Internet Explorer 9, allow for some kind of private browsing mode, here’s how it looks in Windows 7:

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Internet Explorer



By right-clicking on the taskbar icon you can open up a private browsing window that will allow you to log in to your ‘other’ Live ID at the same time as your Live@edu account.

Option 2: Desktop client

Another option would be to connect a desktop client to your mail accounts. Microsoft Outlook 2010, or Windows Live Mail both provide great ways to manage your email from your desktop without ever needing to login through a browser. By utilising the power of a desktop client you no longer clash with multiple Live IDs in the same browser session – but obviously, this requires you install some software on your PC.

Outlook_256x WLMail_256x256

Option 3: Connected Accounts

Third in the list would be the amazing “connected accounts” feature of Live@edu. Connected accounts allows you to hook up your favourite personal email accounts to your Live@edu mailbox allowing you to check, send and receive mail all from one place, whether that’s the browser or your desktop mail client.

Used in conjunction with an inbox rule, it’s possible to connect your Hotmail, Gmail or other favourite mail account and deliver mail into a separate folder allowing you to view your institution mail and personal mail on the same screen, at the same time – no need to log out of one account to access another, or open a private browsing session.


Accessible through the options in the Outlook Web App you can follow the wizard for connecting up your accounts, you can see above that two accounts have been connected.


The three options above aren’t exhaustive, but they are probably the most common workarounds for the multiple Live ID limitation. By giving users several options they can pick a workaround that best fits with their usage scenarios.

Have you found a different way to manage multiple Live IDs? Let us know in the comments!

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