Wow that takes me back. I've stopped using my hotmail actively for already about 2-3 years. I have my thunderbird on my desktop occassionally download & filter through all the spam for archival purposes. It just annoys me how locked down it is. With gmail (not a plug, just the best web-based email I've used so far) you get free POP & IMAP access & there are no restrictions with forwarding (i.e. if you switch somewhere else).
Hotmail was amazing back in the day - MS has just managed to strangle every single web-based strategy they had.