Recently we tried to remove Windows Family Safety from a computer because it was nothing but a nuisance. While we understand the need for this type of program for some people, for others it is purely unnecessary.

We were very disappointed to not be able to find an easy way to uninstall this one program. Afterall one would think going to the Control Panel > Programs and Features in Windows Vista would do the trick. Naturally this begged the question, “how the heck did this thing get installed”.

We learned that Windows Family Safety can be found with Windows Live Onecare and also within Windows Live Essentials. Since we didn’t have Windows Live Onecare, we had to assume this snuck into our computer through Windows Live Essentials.

Looking up Windows Live Essentials at the Microsoft webwsite and you will see it contains Windows Live Messenger, Windows Live Mail, Windows Live Writer, Windows Live Photo Gallery, Windows Live Movie Maker Beta, Windows Live Family Safety, and Windows Live Toolbar. We found it!

Additional Windows Live Essentials programs include:
Microsoft Office Outlook® Connector, Office Live Add-in, Microsoft Silverlight

Removing Windows Live Essentials will remove all of these features. Therefore, if you like one or more of products and not others, you will need to turn off the service of the one you do not want.

As an example. If you wanted to turn off Windows Family Safety, you can do so by:

1. Go to Start Menu => Run

2. Type: services.msc

3. click ok

4. Find the service “Windows Live Family Safety” in the list.

5. Double click on that

6. Change start type to disabled

7. Click Stop if that is activated

8. Click OK

You may want to reboot your computer at this point.

Windows Family Safety is the most likely item amongst the Windows Live Essentials programs that someone would want to remove. Of course we are recommending for Microsoft to allow for individual program uninstallations instead of this “group huddle” of programs.

We hope this will help someone else out there when they are trying to uninstall Windows Family Safety.