Perhaps the most exciting and forward thinking features of Windows Live are the underused and poorly understood web activities. These allow you to publish updates from other services, such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, to Windows Live. The net effect is that these updates appear seamlessly on the home pages of your Windows Live friends to let them know what you’ve been up to all over the Interwebs.
That’s great if your friends use Windows Live, but what if they don’t? Perish the thought, I know, but it does happen. For instance, how are all your friends on Facebook going to know what you’ve been up to over here in the more enlightened corner of the social web? You need a kind of “reverse” web activity to effectively push your stream of Windows Live updates out to other services. Luckily Windows Live provides just such a tool.
Your Windows Live Profile page houses a feed that includes your 20 most recent Windows Live updates. Because it’s a standard RSS feed, it can be consumed by any website that understands RSS, including Facebook. Here’s how to pull your Windows Live activities into Facebook:
Navigate to http://profile.live.com, and click the RSS icon. The feed is displayed.
Copy the feed’s URL.
Mosey on over to Facebook, and navigate to your Profile page.
Click Options, and then click Settings.
Under Available Sites, click Blog/RSS, and paste the URL from your Windows Live feed.
Click Import. Within a few minutes, Facebook will begin pulling in your recent Windows Live updates.
Pretty much anything you do on Windows Live can be included in your profile’s activity stream, including your:
- Messenger status updates
- Spaces blog posts
- Public SkyDrive photos, links, and other documents
- Favorite music, books, and movies
- Profile notes
- Comments on others’ blog posts, profiles, and shared items
FYI, you can also tailor which types of updates you push into your activity stream here.
Before you go all ga ga, there are a couple of caveats to keep in mind. All updates are imported as Facebook notes, which can be kind of awkward at times. The updates include thumbnail images as appropriate, but only around the first 128 characters of the content (similar to what appears on your Windows Live profile page). The Facebook note does include a link back to the original post on Windows Live, so your friends can follow it to read more if they’re interested. One last thing to consider is that depending on your privacy settings, your friends may be able to add comments directly on your Facebook notes, so you may find yourself replying to conversations in two places instead of one.