You may receive an Internet advertisement in a Messenger service window. The advertisement contains text that is similar to the
This issue may occur if you receive a net
message from someone who is using the Messenger service in Windows.
The Messenger service is a Windows service that transmits net
messages and messages that are sent through the Alerter service
between client computers and servers. For example, network administrators use Messenger service to send administrative alerts to network users.
Windows and other software programs can also use the Messenger service.
For example, Windows may use it to inform you when a print job is completed or
when you lose power to your computer and switch to an uninterruptible power
supply (UPS). Your antivirus program may use the Messenger service to send you
notifications. The Messenger service is not related to your Web browser, e-mail
program, Windows Messenger, or MSN Messenger. This issue may occur if the
following conditions exist:
- The Messenger service is started.
- The Remote Procedure Call service is started.
- Inbound NetBIOS (NetBIOS over TCP/IP) and UDP broadcast
traffic is turned on for your Internet connection.
To resolve this issue, install or turn on a firewall that
blocks inbound NetBIOS and UDP broadcast traffic. The method that you use to
resolve this issue depends on your operating system and how you connect to the
Internet. The following sections provide examples of several different
configurations and possible methods of resolution.
You connect to the Internet directly
If you use a single computer that is connected to the Internet
directly (by using a cable modem, a DSL modem, or a dial-up modem, for
example), install a firewall and block inbound NetBIOS and UDPbroadcast traffic
on your computer.
You are running Windows XP
If you are running Windows XP and connect to the Internet directly
(by using a cable modem, a DSL modem, or a dial-up modem, for example), install
Windows XP Service Pack 1 (SP1) and turn on Internet Connection Firewall (ICF).
By default, the installation of Windows XP SP1 permits Internet Connection Firewall (ICF) to block all incoming traffic (unicast, multicast, and broadcast). By default, if you have installed Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2), Windows Firewall (WF) is turned on.
For additional information about this change in ICF blocking behavior in Windows XP SP1, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
ICF now blocks insolicited inbound unicast, multicast, and broadcast traffic
For additional information
about how to obtain Windows XP SP1, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
How to obtain the latest Windows XP service pack
For additional information about how to turn on ICF, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
How to turn on or turn off the Internet firewall in Windows XP
You are running Windows 2000
If you are running Windows 2000 and connect to the Internet directly (by using a cable modem, a DSL modem, or a dial-up modem, for example), obtain and install a third-party firewall product that blocks inbound NetBIOS and UDP broadcast traffic.
You connect to the Internet through a small network that you manage
If your network uses connection sharing to provide Internet access
to multiple computers, install or enable the firewall only on the shared
You are running Windows XP with Internet Connection Sharing
If you use Internet Connection Sharing in Windows XP to
provide Internet access to multiple computers, install Windows XP SP1 on the
Internet Connection Sharing host computer and turn on ICF only on the Internet Connection Sharing host computer.
You are running Windows with a hardware Internet Connection Sharing device
If you use a router or other hardware device to provide Internet
access to multiple computers, configure the connection sharing device to block
inbound NetBIOS and UDP broadcast traffic. Contact the manufacturer of your
third-party connection sharing device for more information.
You connect to the Internet though a network that you do not manage
If you connect to the Internet by using a corporate network, or if
your Internet service provider (ISP) uses a firewall, ask the network
administrator to configure the firewall to block inbound NetBIOS and UDP
traffic. Contact your network administrator or ISP for more information.
To work around this issue, turn off the Messenger service.
To do this, follow these steps:
- Click Start, and then click
Control Panel (or point to Settings, and then
click Control Panel).
- Double-click Administrative Tools.
- Double-click Services.
- Double-click Messenger.
- In the Startup type list, click
- Click Stop, and then click
If the Messenger service is stopped, messages from the Alerter
service (notifications from your antivirus software, for example) are not
transmitted. If the Messenger service is turned off, any services that
explicitly depend on the Messenger service do not start, and an error message
is logged in the system event log. Therefore, Microsoft recommends that
you install a firewall and configure it to block NetBIOS and RPC traffic
instead of turning off the Messenger service.
The Messenger service uses UDP ports 135, 137, and 138; TCP
ports 135, 139, and 445; and an ephemeral (that is, short-lived) port number
greater than 1024.
Firewalls help prevent net
messages and help protect your computer from other
malicious attacks over the Internet. These attacks can be designed to perform
the following tasks:
- Access your private information
- Distribute software illegally by appropriating space on
your hard disk