A temporary email address is handy in situations where you don’t want to share your primary email address because of the risk of spam. Now there are quite a few services on the web, Mailinator and 10MinuteMail for example, that offer temporary email addresses for free but with certain limitations.

For example, these services provide receive-only inboxes so you can’t send email to someone using your temporary address. Second, these addresses auto-expire after a certain time and then you may have to generate a new one. Finally, we don’t have much of a clue about the companies that run these services and their privacy policies.

If you have been looking for a more reliable temporary email service but without any limitations, it’s time to log in to your Hotmail account.

Microsoft has added a new feature in Windows Live Hotmail that will let you create aliases for your main email address and the good part is that all these aliases can be managed though the same Inbox. Google Apps also supports email aliases but not Gmail.

I really like the way they have implemented aliases in Hotmail (see the video above). All incoming email for an alias gets stored in a separate folder, outside your main Inbox, and if you are getting too much spam for an alias, simply delete it from your account.

You may associate up to five different aliases with your Hotmail account.

Technically, this is quite similar to creating a new Gmail account that auto-forwards to your main Inbox and then you set up a filter for routing those messages. However, for people who aren’t that technically inclined, Hotmail’s approach is a winner.