I am using MSN Messenger with a Hotmail account. In Messenger, the unread mail count is stuck on 2. When I read those two emails I did it in Mozilla Firefox, so I'm guessing that Messenger cannot communicate with Firefox therefore the two emails are still 'unread'. I have made IE defaut browser and made the two emails unread (in IE in my actual inbox) and re-read them with no sucess.

Hi Jado,

I have the same problem: my MSN Messenger email counter is stuck on 1 when all my mail is read, and always shows 1 more than the actual amount when I do have new mail. I have no idea what caused this (don't think I ever read my mail in Firefox) but it's been like this for a very long time, even on previous versions of MSN Messenger.

If you or anyone else finds the solution, please let me know. Thanks!


What version of windows is this.... what version of messenger is this, and how many other people use msn messenger on that computer? Do you have trayserver running?

This is a program that attempts To Fix this problem, by applying a bunch of different techniques. To walk you through what it does, step by step (in case you don't trust it, and want to do it yourself) is this order:

1. Cleans Out The Windows Prefetch Folder 

2. Deletes The "UnreadMail" subkey from the registry

3. Scans The Hard-Drive For trayserver.exe, and alerts you if it finds it.
    trayserver.exe will stop msn messenger from showing instant e-mail
    notifications (next to the time at the system tray)

If this doesn't fix the problem, you may have to uninstall msn messenger completely, and then remove all it's registry entries. Then you can reinstall it, and it should have cleared up the problem. Let me know how it turns out.

I tried your fix steps (manually), but without luck unfortunately. I cleared out the prefetch folder and removed the UnreadMail subkey from the registry. It contained subkeys for both Hotmail and my other mail-address (which I read through outlook express). Come to think of it, I also show my Hotmail mailbox in Outlook Express. Could this be causing the problem? In Outlook Express, the unread mail count for Hotmail is correct.
I also tried manually setting the MessageCount registry key to the correct value, but it just kept putting it back whenever I changed the amount of unread mails in Hotmail.
And I'm not running trayserver. I do get instant email notifications, the count is just wrong.

By the way, I'm running Windows XP Home Edition (SP2) with the latest version of MSN Messenger (7.5).

I see, my code isn't good enough for you ;) (j/k)

Outlook could be causing a problem, OR if there is multiple identies that are being conflicted with msn messenger.... Perhaps there is another identity that still has 1 unread e-mail in it? You could also consider uninstalling msn messenger, then go into the registry and remove all remnants of MSN messenger. Then reboot and reinstall, and that might fix it. You also might consider looking into cleaning out the application data (if messenger put 1 in your application data folder). Also, check and see if this problem happens with Windows Messenger..... if it does NOT happen with windows messenger, then we know it's not a problem with hotmail.

My problem was fixed. I just left it for a few days and the mail cound went to to zero.

That sounds to me, more like a problem with the msn messenger server, as opposed to your client side software.

It's junk mail caught in outlook - emptied mine then viewed it in hotmail and the counter reset to normal :)