For those over-protective parents out there, the final Windows Live Essentials application I’m taking a look at is Family Safety. Personally, it looks like more hassle than it’s worth, especially considering that Windows 7 and Windows Vista both have Parental Controls built in that work very well! If you use the Parental Control’s in Vista or 7, you can already stop the kids from using certain applications, going on the computer at certain times and applying a web filter.
If you’re running Windows XP, or just want to be extra sure, then setting up Family Safety is simple, if not a bit time consuming. Every person you want to restrict requires a Windows Live account, which needs to be set up if they haven’t already got one before you can use Family Safety.
Once everything is set up, you can view activity reports for anybody you’re currently monitoring, add children or add another parent. You can configure family safety to limit the searches that children can perform, restrict certain sites and even decide who they can talk to on Live Messenger (overkill?).
Maybe I just don’t understand because I’m not a parent, but if you already use parental controls to filter sites and manage usage times in Vista or 7, I don’t see why you’d want to set up Family Safety too, but I guess that’s a judgement call…