Submitted by Jeff Buster on Fri, 01/27/2012 - 18:48.
There are many messages which may have significance which you want to transfer from your cell phone and save on your laptop - so you are not at the mercy of the cell phone company storing/losing them for you. 
I was asked to help figure out how to extract and archive to computer a voice mail  (from my acquaintances’  old friend who had left a message and had since died – my friend wanted to preserve that last voice)  on my friend’s phone.  
The operating system of the laptop I was working with is Windows 7 Professional and has the program Microsoft “Sound Record” – make sure you have opened sound record  and have it idling on your desk top – so when you finally get to the message you want to record, you can click “start recording”.  
You will need a cable to go from the cell phone audio output to the mic input on your computer.
I bought ($12 – too much) a short 12” male to male   cell phone audio out-put to laptop mic in-put cable  with an female to male adapter (knurled silver in image) for reducing the cable jack to the smaller diameter of the telephone female audio jack.  
Check with Radio Shack or Micro Center or other electronics store for the right connection for your particular cell phone – bring your cell phone – there is a lot of variety.
The problem which immediately turned up is that with the jack installed in the cell phone audio output -the phone audio is shut off - you can’t hear on the phone the audio cues which need to be followed to access the mail box and advance through the voice mails.   Plugging the jack into the cell phone audio port shuts off the telephone ear audio.
The cell phone audio was not coming out of the laptop speakers either.
I checked on the internet – but didn’t find exactly what I was looking for.  
I stumbled around a bit:   then I went  to Control panel. 
 Here is the solution:  click on “sound”, click on tab “recording”, click on “microphone”,  click on “properties”, click on “listen”, check the box “listen on this device”, click on “ok”.
You will now be able to use a headphone (with just the headphone jack – not the headphone mic jack) plugged into the computer headphone output jack. 
Now you can listen to the automated cues on the cell phone voice mail – the cues which will allow you to advance through the voice mails, delete emails, etc.
Once you advance in your voice mail to the voice mail you want to save on your laptop,  click “start recording” on “sound recording”.
After you believe you have archived the message onto your computer, and before you delete any important message off your cell phone, test play-back  the  recording from your laptop to be sure you have saved it audibly and completely. 
If your test replays what you want, then go ahead and delete the message off your cell phone.
If any reader has other suggestions, please write them up and email them to me by clicking on the name link at the top of this report - and as appropriate I will include them here.  Thanks. 

Good luck.  

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