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on June 9, 2017 | hide | past | favorite



As others are saying, the new Electron-based app is so bad on so many levels. Recently it has been failing to deliver incoming messages. They don't even appear, it just causes confusion to anyone trying to have a text conversation. Plus the lack of features that versions for other platforms have.

At this point it's just better to use web.skype.com on a browser tab. I find that more reliable than the Electron client.

And I'm just talking about the Linux version here. It's like if Skype had different bugs on each platform. Windows version also has its own glitches too.

* The classic, full version of Skype for Windows sometimes flips the order of a few messages, so that if you send two messages, the first one appears below the second one.

* The new UWP app seems to disconnect every time the window gets minimized. When the window is restored, for a few seconds I see all my contacts offline while it's trying to reconnect.


I couldn't agree more.

We've been using Skype for internal communication for a very long time. Back then it was the only option that worked on all the OSes we need (Linux, Windows, Mac), had all the features, and it just worked.

But the Electron app is just damn terrible. The message layout is super inefficient - it can display maybe half the messages compared to the native client. If you click somewhere, it un-expectecly moves you somewhere else. And it just stopped delivering new messages some time ago (I've tried to downgrade to 5.2, but that made no difference).

Interestingly enough, the web skype delivers messages just fine (it still sucks for all the other reasons).

And it also does not drain the battery that much. The devs apparently had the bright idea to render the messages window as canvas, and refresh it at 60hz no matter what. Because of emoticons. The web skype does that too, but if the tab is inactive Firefox suspends that.

The only thing that mostly works for me is the Android client. I wonder how they'll break that one.

In any case, we have lost all hope Skype will get better again. Also, there are other options nowadays.


For a while, I really enjoyed hangouts.. but the past 2 years, google has systematically removed or obscured features, and it's just a bit of a mess now. These days, for skype, I typically just use the web version, as it's "good enough" for my needs, but none of them are really great anymore.

I've worked in one office that had Skype (for business) properly integrated, and it was very nice. But, like so many other things, they couldn't just fix bugs, and make sure to keep it working on new OS versions.


What reliable alternatives would you suggest?


I would recommend Wire ( https://wire.com/en/ ). All mobile and desktop OS and web too. In my experience it's reliable and private and the company behind it is extremely open and supportive of its users.

I am not affiliated, I just like it.


This will sound crazy but with the Discord or Twitch App are rock solid, but they are gamer focus and also they are electron apps (I have mostly positive experience with electron apps myself, VS Code and RStudio).

I do like mumble and ran my own server for years, but client wise it is not as easy.


I use Discord for all sorts of things, not just games. What features do you find it's missing that would be useful?


The main complaints that I have seen are with video calling and screen-sharing.

These should be added soon™, though.


Ah, fair enough. That's what I've been using Hangouts for, and I don't think it'll change, but more competition is always welcome.


I was introduced to the Twitch app through some gaming friends and I was surprised at how solid it is. It's actually really good.


Did you try riot.im ?


That UI. I rather just use my IRC with Weechat on Freenode


You can choose from a whole catalog of alternative clients.


That very much depends on what are your requirements. If you need all the stuff skype supported originally - chat, voice, video, screen sharing etc. then I don't have a solution I'm afraid, particularly if you need support for various operating systems.

What we need for the internal communication (within the company) is a simple IM, integrated with ticketing system (a bunch of generic rooms, per-ticket rooms, linking from tickets, ...). We're pretty much set on using Mattermost for that, which has the advantage of being self-hosted.

For voice (typically group calls with other engineers) we'll probably stick with Skype for now (I the Android app on my phone for that). For meetings with customers we usually use a regular service with dial-in anyway.

We don't do video, and I don't think I've needed screen sharing in the last few years.


For voice I can highly recommend Mumble, it's trivially self-hosted too and feels well integrated on all platforms.

For video though your options are definitely more limited, keep an eye on Riot, I'm not sure that it's ready yet, but when it is it will present an extremely good option. If you only need mobile, Signal does it today and is probably one of the most stable and secure products around, can't vouch for the video quality though personally.


>If you need all the stuff skype supported originally - chat, voice, video, screen sharing etc. then I don't have a solution I'm afraid, particularly if you need support for various operating systems.

Google Hangouts.


My experience with Hangouts is that the screen resolution is incredibly low for a very long time, and it's super-laggy on big updates (switching virtual desktops, etc.). While appear.in is still somewhat laggy, and occasionally requires one or more participants to quit and re-join, its screen sharing is much better.


I've actually used hangouts at the previous company (so roughly 2012-2015 or so), and it worked fine I guess. I don't remember what were the reasons not to use it instead of Skype, but I'm sure there were some.

But I guess we don't really need the video calls that much (After all, who'd want to see video of engineers working mostly from home, right?) and the ability to self-host and integrate Mattermost with the issue tracker etc. is quite neat.


I have used and like Zoom, but it's not free.


I really like https://appear.in/

Web-based, supports notification, Slack integration, custom urls.


WebRTC is its main drawback, some browsers e.g. Safari don't seem to support it completely.


They announced support for WebRTC in Safari at WWDC this week


If you just want to talk, SIP via Asterisk (server) is OK. Most phones have built in support and there are apps (Jitsi) that works on most OS's. You can also connect it to land-line for calling those without Internet access.



Ekiga


I've had conference calls with Microsoft using Skype on Windows 10 on a Surface Book, and 3 Microsoft employees still haven't been able to get Skype to work.


I use Skype for Business and not only is it very poorly coded/architected, but the design paradigms actually make communication harder.


Actually I like it better than any alternative we have use so far (NIH InHouse solutions, NetMeeting, Sametime, WebEx).


When I worked there even people at Cisco hated WebEx.our team used hangouts instead.


For a while, I really loved hangouts... but Google has kind of dropped the ball, pulling out some of the integrated features (SMS, and Google Voice integration), and/or obfuscating those features. It used to be far easier to actually use for most of your communications. I also really preferred the integrated comms, so that I could keep hangouts and sms messages from a single contact together.


Totally agree.


That's probably Skype for Business, aka Lync though. Weren't they actually separate code bases?


If they are, it's still incredibly terrible. An enormous list of common glitches could be written about it, that just never get patched

For one, it tends to split group convos into random tabs at random intervals, black hole messages, crash randomly and silently and you don't notice until someone says you're offline(the window will still open! it's just hung), etc etc.


Clearly they must be using Lync or Skype to coordinate fixing them too -- just can't find the right tab to resume the conversations.


Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. I missed a call today because I messaged my coworker and nobody answered. He told me he messaged and called me but I didn't receive anything. It worked yesterday.

That's a kind of a showstopper so I switched back to 4.3 hoping they'll fix it before the end of the month. I have a Windows VM with Skype installed but I'd rather start using something else with my customers.

Another annoying feature of the new Skype is that it has that modern/videogame look and feel which could be appropriate for casual chatting but not for business. Version 4.3 can be tweaked to look much like these HN pages: text with little space in between. Much more appropriate when copy pasting information and when scrolling back to read past calls.

And no history past 30 days.

And no search in history anyway.

And that useless unresizable black call window that eats up of half of the screen, thanks MS!


That they can mess up even text chat is unbelievable. These are problems in networking that have been solved for decades. An undergraduate should be capable of writing a text chat program with 100% accuracy. This is pathetic.


> An undergraduate should be capable of writing a text chat program with 100% accuracy

That maybe true, but I assure you that program will not scale to millions of messages. The reason so many companies "get it wrong" isnt because their developers are less skilled than graduates. Syncing M:N state at scale is hard.


Really? The Internet scaled effortlessly across the entire world because it was designed correctly. I'm not saying it's easy, but these problems have been solved.


I see you've never used slack ;)


Even Skype for Business on Windows is a hot mess.

Seriously, I love some of the things MS makes, but Skype has become one of those products that seems to survive on inertia instead of quality. Fortunately Google is also firmly intent on self-destructing on the subject of Chat as well, so it's crap all around.

Did the entire software industry get together and have a conference where they all agreed to screw up text messaging?


SfB 2016 is a lot better and is still a steaming pile.

The regular Skype client is completely unusable to me on Windows 7. It works ok on MacOS.


Due to instability and memory/race condition issues with the new sykpe app, I've been using Pidgin and the skypeweb plugin: https://github.com/EionRobb/skype4pidgin/tree/master/skypewe...

This works well for me since most of my skype traffic is chats, but I have to load the new skype app for calls.


Nitpick, I assume by "race condition" you mean "used lots of CPU". This is a common colloquial conflation, but race conditions [1] (which are not generally identifiable without aid of a debugger and the application's source code) and high CPU usage are unrelated concepts.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Race_condition


What are you going on about here? I have never once heard someone confuse "race condition" with "high CPU usage."



That's not a nitpick. These are entirely different things and calling high CPU usage a "race condition" is really confusing and misleading.

Do people actually do that? Where did that come from?


> Where did that come from?

Maybe because it makes your machine's fans sound like a race car?

Honestly this is the first I've heard of this usage as well.


And also, please can we refer to computers as hard drives. Especially desktops.


You're right. I didn't throw a debugger at it. It seems to randomly ramp up CPU load and stay high until I kill the process.


Do look up what a race condition is.


It's a subset of race conditions to be sure, but I think it's reasonable to look at a thread that gets stuck in a do-nothing loop while the app continues to run and guess it's probably the fault of buggy multithreading and bad luck on the timings.


> which are not generally identifiable without aid of a debugger and the application's source code

Random behavior is usually an indication that there may very likely be a race condition without needing the source code.


I've never heard of those two things being conflated.


> sometimes flips the order of a few messages, so that if you send two messages, the first one appears below the second one.

Turns out eventual consistency doesn't work well with chat apps.


The eventual consistency part of skype doesn't really cause problems. But how it screws up simple timestamping is quite another question.


The timestamp probably isn't to the MS, and/or there may be some drift on whichever server recorded the incoming message... it should be set to ms on the client, and only in the case of > 2s drift be adjusted on the server.


Your comment made me laugh, but this issue is very sad. How can a chat app that constantly flips messages in transit could pass any QI, for whatever low bar we set?


What I don't understand is what is so complicated. Chat apps aren't exactly rocket science (pretty much the opposite) and have been around since the 90s. Only the live video is more complicated but that doesn't seem to be the main problem with the linux app.


Maybe rather than being about difficulty, it has to do with patents? No idea, just a hunch.


You could start by defining "linux" app.

Linux is not really a thing. It's a mess of numerous operating systems. Ubuntu, Debian, CentOS, redhat, slackware, all themselves available in different incompatible editions.

I pity developers who have to support desktop applications on linux.


Not exactly. The only things you need to handle are :

- An old enough glibc (glibc is backward compatible)

- static link as much as you can (I know this is against the unix way, but the only way to workaround most of the compatiblity issues). This is pretty much what macOS apps do by shipping .framework within .app.

Beside this, QT and GTK will pretty much always be available.


Way back in mid-2k (maybe late), Skype was about to release the core of the code for linux as a lib that could be linked to from 3rd-party chat apps. They nixed that at the last minute (after getting a lot of partner's hopes up) and instead we ended up with a shitty app for Linux instead an ok lib for Linux. I only heard about the lib as I was working for a company that was running the Skype hardware stores at the time.


They only need to do a part of the work. The other part is the repo maintainors job. These many distros also boil down to a few fundamental distros.


Leave it to Microsoft to fail this badly on something so fundamental. Microsoft need to stop innovating and focus maintaining and improve what works.

I just want to send and receive messages to my existing contacts.


In big companies doing the "mundane" things like solid incremental engineering is an irrational career strategy. Most product managers / careerists want to write the whiz bang new development rather than deal with the pain that is backwards compatibility, efficiency, multi platform support.


I miss the 80s when it was something that nerds did because of passion. Everyone wants to be a rock star developer now.

Seems like we are headed to a dark age of software.


> * The classic, full version of Skype for Windows sometimes flips the order of a few messages, so that if you send two messages, the first one appears below the second one.

This is most likely due to one computer's time being out of sync then re-syncing


I've used Skype on linux and found that their web version was bad, I have to refresh the page frequently to keep up to date. And the biggest disadvantage that I found was I can't make video call with other people, though I get clear audio. I found out when I was video calling for an interview who was using Windows 10, and the interviewer got mad because I can't provide a proper video call (Skype was the only option).


Thank you so much for pointing me to web.skype.com. I didn't know this existed and it solves so many problems for me.


That's still true with web.skype.com being down for 3 days ealier this year for me (wouldn't render in chrome.)


I had an interview this morning which was via Skype, which I don't use. Gave my MacBook Pro r2013 to the missus, so all I had was the Android app on my Nexus 6p and the new app for Linux on my XPS 13.

I did some tests beforehand and the Linux app doesn't even connect to the Skype Test account. So I used the Android app and the voice quality was so bad I had to riff on some things. We reconnected 2/3 times and it was uniformly awful. Never had these problems on my 80/20 fibre connection with Hangouts.

Skype is awful, the Linux app is crap, it needs to die in a fire.

EDIT: I even enabled upnpd on my gateway router in case that was the problem - nope, still fubar.


I will never understand the idea in Microsoft that having UPnP running or being willing to open all kinds of jacked up ports is an acceptable user experience. UPnP is nice to have but it's difficult to find a router that has it, and even so, I've used Google Hangouts and Facetime over my network with zero issues, what makes Skype so star spangled awesome that it needs forwarded ports?


Huh, I've never seen a router (this includes ISP provided DOCSIS/DSL/FTTH units) without UPnP support. It seems very well supported?


I have upnp turned off because security. Whatever relies on upnp without fallback should burn in hell.


I've recently switched to UniFi gear and the UniFi Controller does not provide a GUI option to enable UPnP. There's a thread[0] on the forums that asks for it, but it's only implemented in the beta version of the controller.

The UniFi Security Gateway supports UPnP just fine, but you have to enable it through the commandline (and have it blown away every time the controller reprovisions it) or add it to config.properties.json so that the controller will include it when provisioning.

Since neither option is easily discoverable, the USG essentially doesn't support it. You really have to know where to look to find it.

[0] https://community.ubnt.com/t5/UniFi-Routing-Switching-Featur...


At the time I found my Buffalo N300, it was pretty few and far between (at least for consumer grade hardware, probably more widely found on enterprise).


Every router I've bought in the last decade has had UPnP, and I don't look for it. Citation needed on the "difficult to find"


The last router I bought (a UniFi Security Gateway) can do UPnP, but the (non-beta) UniFi Controller doesn't expose that option. You can enable it through the commandline on the router though.

I'd certainly call the option "difficult to find". ;)


"Difficult to find the setting on your non-consumer router" is different from "difficult to find a router that has it".


I've owned eight or so over the years, 2 of them had it, one of which was the most recent one I bought explicitly for it. YMMV


For clarity the router I used was my own Linux based one, so it wasn't off the shelf. I'd have happily port forwarded it, but the android version didn't need it so why the Linux one?


I've not used Skype so I can't say, but anyone who's used an XBox console online knows about the port forwarding nightmares you have to go through to make the things work correctly. UPnP was the only way to make 2 consoles work at the same time.


  However, the app lacks advanced features 
  like screen sharing and API access. 
  It also excludes advanced video and audio 
  controls that you can access on 
  Windows or Mac OS platforms.
Also the beta version does not work reliably or does not work at all. Repeated failures to connect, no messages whatsoever. The older version just works. Maybe if they put to good use that big data infrastructure and analyze the logs that will become apparent. My use case is Ubuntu systems connecting to various remote OSs.


I have been using the new Skype For Linux app since their first alpha release and never experienced any of those problems. It lacks features but was never unstable for me.


Same here, until the recent weeks. Suddenly it started having issues where messages don't show up until I restart the client, while they show up fine on my mobile.

It's certainly a business move to make Linux experience worse, I doubt MS can't put some dedicated engineers and have a proper app.


Considering the Android app was just updated and it looks terrible, I don't think there's a conspiracy theory against Linux.


I can see screens shared by others but I can't share my one. But I was using Teamviewer with my customers because it had a much better video quality.


Baity title? I isn't really retiring the app completely, it's only retiring a version and substituting it with the latest one...


I think the point is that it is retiring the full featured v4.3 and replacing it with the Beta version that is missing features - the big one for me was that I couldn't share my screen.


Yeah. The link in the FTA takes me to Skype download page and trying to install the deb file says that the version is 5.3.0.1. The notice on that page only says :

> All Skype for Linux clients version 4.3 and older will be retired on July 1, 2017. To keep chatting, please install the latest version of Skype for Linux

Seems like 4.3 and older will get retired, but Skype will continue to work on Linux with later versions like 5.3.0.1


If you are willing to call it "working", that is. I take it from the other commenters that "working" might be an overstatement.


Skype as we know it is dead anyway. Just look at the trailers at the bottom of this blog post:

https://blogs.skype.com/news/2017/06/01/introducing-the-next...

Just four years ago, everyone I knew was running Skype on their computers with various group chats (agencies, remote teams..). Now it's a very confused Slack clone.

I'd say it needs to die in a fire, but I still like having SkypeOut around for the occasional communication edge case. I wouldn't be surprised to see Microsoft drop that feature, though.


I was wondering what to use for video calls with my father. He has a mobile core 2 duo machine (one of Dell's micro desktop PCs).

Skype stopped working as stated in the title. I went with Facebook Messenger on Firefox, but video from his camera is very jerky. It looks like it hangs for a 1s every 1.5s. For me it's an indication of a performance problem - video is converted to a WebRTC friendly format and it's slow. I have to measure or check how it works with Chrome.

So I searched a bit for alternatives and now it seems that everything is to some extent Electron based. So I don't have high hopes. Ones that are interesting don't have fully functional Android client, like Tox.

Electron makes me sad. That means I should probably put some work where my mouth is and do a couple of proper desktop apps for messaging (using existing protocols) or help some Tox client getting there.

Or maybe do some work to make Electron more bearable?


I want a dedicated hand-held that does video, and can lock the screen while maintaining video input and output.

I have a 16 month old kid; she has grandparents who are in various stages of decline, from "knees and back hurt a little" to "fairly advanced Alzheimers", and with various levels of computer expertise at the best of times.

I want to send each of them a tablet that someone configures once to be on wifi, and then just lets them receive calls from me, or the kid. I would also like this thing to be something sturdy enough I could just give to the kid so she can run around with it, and drool on it, without disconnecting the call until I unlock the device. (Grandparents aren't at the drooling stage yet, but at least one is likely to leave it outside in the rain.)

Does such a critter exist?


I'd also love such a thing: a plain and simple handheld thingy with two buttons "call", "answer" and that's it.

No worrying about updates, contact lists, launching apps, etc.

Maybe a tablet with Android and some add-on to avoid updates, lock screens, and crapware?


No, it does not, unless you stay in the Apple world, and use facetime.


> and can lock the screen while maintaining video input and output.

Although not quite what you're looking for, I wrote a program for macOS and Windows [0] that locks keyboard and mouse input, specifically so I could have my kids in front of my computer for video calls without worrying about them hitting keys and messing things up.

0: https://www.imralsoftware.com/kamlock


How do you unlock it when you're done?


With a keyboard combination.


This is still vaporware but it sounds interesting https://www.joinloop.com


The new Echo Show with drop in mode might work?


Thing you may want to try:

https://talky.io/ - needs Chrome or Chromium, fails to work under Firefox

https://about.riot.im/ - a Matrix client that looks fine

http://linphone.org/ - this is SIP based, so only if that is working on their network

However, I'm pretty much having the same problems, so I'd welcome suggestions myself.


Also https://appear.in — works fine in Linux browsers (Chromium and Firefox are both OK, use them myself regularly).

Just create a room, share the link and you're all set.


We use it daily for team meetings at work. Appear.in always works and is the easiest way to set up a video meeting.


heartily seconded, although:

> video is converted to a WebRTC friendly format and it's slow

appear.in uses webrtc so if that's the problem over here it won't solve that.


I'm one of the founders of Pluot. We make video calling softwar and hardware and we use our own stuff every day on linux. Our goal is to combine ease of use with high quality. We test on low-powered machines, and care a lot about working on as many setups as possible, though there are a lot of variables and we don't optimize for very low CPU situations.

You can go to https://pluot.co/new any time to create video call links and share them.

We'd love to hear feedback.


Alternative.to lists many Skype replacements available for Linux. (http://alternativeto.net/software/skype/?platform=linux) It doesn't list which ones are Electron-based, but I have to assume something there works well. I'm eager to try Slack, but I current work in a VERY Microsoft-dominated company, and the horrendous Skype FOR BUSINESS! is the only thing tolerated. (They even turned off the chat history! You know, to make it even MORE horrible.)


Do your dad a favor and buy him a tablet. I'd recommend an iPad for longevity and security reasons.

The previous team I was on was internal corp IT. Everyone was begging to ditch GotoMeeting and move to Skype.

But Skype was awful as well.

So we tested Zoom/Bluejeans/Hangouts and others (went with Zoom, fwiw).

We quit bothering with desktop/browser apps for video, and generally stuck to phone for audio only.

The Android and iOS experience with all of them was much less flakey.


Get Camfrog. For simple 1v1 video chat and chat rooms, nothing beats it, period, and it's free for pretty much every use excepting A. visiting multiple chat rooms at the same time and B. Seeing more than one person at a time in said chat rooms (pond chats are different.) One of the rare programs I actually pay for instead of cracking the crap out of it.


Maybe buy a couple of used iPad 2s for $100 a pop and use them exclusively for FaceTime. It seems to work far better than anything else for video chats, even on 5-year-old hardware. The power of native apps is real.


I've been using Skype since 2007 or so. While I haven't found a more convenient alternative, the application quality has always been extremely low. This includes failing to sync notifications / received between mobile and desktop, zombie notifications that keep reappearing (even after being dismissed multiple times) and the list goes on. Why they can't get their shit together is a mystery to me.


What are your problems with Google Hangout, GoToMeeting and Zoom? I've found all three to be significantly less of a headache than skype.


One of my primary uses for Skype has been phone-calls to family (international landlines) and it has at least been reliable in that regard. Most recently Hangouts no longer works on Firefox (due to Mozilla switching plugin API's), I haven't experience with the other two, which would you recommend if moving from Skype?


I see. I've used them primarily for work, I'm not sure of a service that would cover your bases. I'm sorry that you're stuck with Skype for now!


I do a lot of interviews using Skype screen sharing, and even though I'm on OSX a lot of people I pair with use Linux. Shortsighted move to deprecate before feature-parity in my opinion; will move away from Skype as soon as possible.


May I recommend https://appear.in, which has taken our office by storm, replacing an awkward mix of webex, zoom, hangouts and skype.


If you need an alternative, the company I have been at for the last year uses Zoom, and it's been fantastic. I started using it for mentoring recently.


You mean for codementor? I've been asked people to use Hangouts since I had some trouble with zoom, but it might be my lack of experience with zoom/bad instructions.


I do find the Zoom has some weird defaults, like automatically taking over the full screen. They also hide the settings in the app, and it's not possible to get there from the call screen. But overall I've been pleased with Zoom.


Why do you think it's "fantastic" compared to the alternatives?


Yes, I also tried Zoom and is very good. It is very popular for mentoring and language classes.


While I am generally a fan of open-source anyway, few things scream the need for good open-source solutions more than chat programs. I can’t even count on one hand the number of promising clients that have been utterly destroyed by companies over the years.

Enough already. One of the huge values of open code, in addition to being able to contribute and fix bugs, is that you can go back 6 months and fork from the point before $STUPID_FEATURE was added that broke everything. For Skype in particular, they have systematically destroyed this product on multiple platforms in many ways over a period of years.


There are tons of open source chat programs. Perfectly good ones, with video etc. As is so often the case, it's a social problem, not a technical one - the network effects dominate.


No one is talking of chat logs. My Skype logs with my brother are incredibly important and go back several years as we live on separate continents but pretty close nonetheless. This would be horrible -- if I hadn't switched to Windows 10 thanks to Windows Subsystem for Linux. If you do the same, here's how I set up, hopefully helpful to converts like me: https://github.com/chx/chx.github.io/wiki/How-I-set-up-my-Wi...


The old Skype for Linux app stores its logs as a simple sqlite database from which you can export them fairly straightforwardly, see e.g. https://pastebin.com/bWXCQK83 for a simple script which brings them into Pidgin's log format.


But do you really need them? I also swear by keeping all my chat logs, and would get very upset if I lost my WhatsApp / iMessage conversations, however on the other hand I cannot recall a single instance where I needed to find something that was older than a week.


As claudius mentions, it's a simple SQLite database and yes I do search it, every 2-3 months we need some nugget from years and years ago.


I wouldn't mind the Electron "Skype for Linux", if it wasn't a pile of crap. If you're going to retire an app for a replacement, make sure the replacement is on parity or better with the original native client. Microsoft has been doing very well in the Linux space since their new CEO, but this is dumb move.


At least there is web.skype.com, which works with audio + video in some cases, not all... Come on MS, since Ballmer and Gates are gone, you have shown your true potential for innovation and OSS. Just open the protocol, the community will do the rest.


> true potential for innovation and OSS Nope. It has nothing to do with innovation. It just a way to generate some hype. Speaking strictly, MS technologies degraded significantly since Ballmer and Gates departure.


Maybe it's a good thing.

It might give some needed push to Mumble and Tox, or even apps like Wire and Telegram. But they are too many and I don't think these smaller communication ecosystems can even talk to each other seamlessly (haven't used them as any inter-platform scenario).

I didn't mention Signal because it doesn't have a desktop app (that Chrome app not counted).

Links: https://wiki.mumble.info/wiki/Main_Page, https://tox.chat, https://about.riot.im, https://matrix.org, https://telegram.org


Well, apparently I won't be able to call landlines anymore with it (e.g: my family abroad). This was the last piece of Microsoft software I was using, but you know what? fuck it...

   ~ sudo dpkg --remove skype
   Removing skype ...
I am removing it from my phone too.

Microsoft <3 Linux, yeah right.


>> apparently I won't be able to call landlines anymore with it

That's not so apparent... over here[1] one can read about "Calling updates: Calls to mobiles and landlines with Skype credit" in the Linux Beta version 5 release on March 1st.

[1] https://blogs.skype.com/news/2017/03/01/the-skype-for-linux-...


Microsoft is trying their best to kill Skype. And they will succeed if they keep walling it off like this. Windows isn't the center of the world anymore, they should be focusing on building a platform instead of a product.


Well, I am a little sad that I have to abandon my skype account, which I had for many years, now. But on the other hand, I am happy that Microsoft supports my efforts to move to XMPP. Two weeks ago I set my Skype to away and added a comment on how to reach me via XMPP.

I know in its current state XMPP isn't for everybody (outdated clients, low market share), but for friends and family, it works great for me (own ejabberd server, conversations as the dominant client, pidgin for the desktop).

RIP Skype


We use Skype for conferences between my lab and the ones we work closely with.

I try to get them to change to Tox (https://tox.chat/) but it's not easy sincerely, since only very few of us use Linux exclusively and understand the problems with trying to work with Skype (basically we use the web version but can't use video in the conferences) on other OS other than Windows.


It is a pity as the new app (that replaces this) doesn't support some important features and the ones it supports, are pretty basic (e.g no settings/testing for camera and mic).

Microsoft also does not provide a solution for Skype for Business as well which is a serious drawback imo.

Though in some cases I am quick to blame MS, in this case many of their rivals are in a similar state unfortunately.


I stopped using Skype completely because of how painful the update process is on Windows 7 and the addition of ads to the chat windows.


I've never seen another chat app mix contacts from two unrelated accounts or remove contacts for no reason. When you fucked up that bad, dropping the software is a great idea. From what I have observed, these bugs are not limited to Linux either. But then again, it's not like Microsoft is known for quality software. It's shitty, buggy, insecure software I wouldn't touch with a 10 ft pole like the rest of their offerings. Good riddance. Maybe someone will step up in this field. I'm looking at Signal but their video chat still doesn't work (ok, it worked for like a second before dropping off but that doesn't count).


This is a real shame. I had used Skype for Linux as part of a research project creating a Tor Bridge that used QR codes in a video stream to send the Tor data. It had a pretty decent RPC that there were Python libraries for. As far as I know, there aren't any other Skype clients with an RPC as powerful.


Can anyone suggest a Linux video calling app that auto answers calls. That is from a headless server. I use mine as a baby monitor and Skype has a great feature where you can allow it to auto answer from know callers (only myself). It seems to already be broken with newest Android app.


Is being a video call app a requirement? It sounds like you'd probably be better suited with a webcam/streaming tool that supports authentication.


Since updating to the beta, I have found that the electron client does not receive messages if outlook is open at the same time.

Even after closing outlook this problem tends to remain.. Really annoying. I wish they made it OSS so we can fix hese things faster


I'm happy about this. Finally a good excuse to get rid of it rather than having to go "but Wire has better privacy and is open source", which is of course my real reason for moving away.


Cant's say there's anything left of Skype Linux to miss. First thing MS did after taking over was to start making the Linux client progressively worse. Good riddance!


This is great news. Now when somebody asks to Skype with me, I can tell them "Sorry, I'm on Linux".


Seems like skype is mostly dead anyway. I remember a few years ago many of the network news agencies exclusively relied on skype (I assume this was an advertising deal with MS because of how much I heard the brand mentioned), but now I see more mentions (adverts) of facetime and never hear about skype.


I'm skeptical of the idea that FaceTime mentions in the news are advertisements, as opposed to just really good branding by Apple and a name that people easily remember.


What is the good alternative to Skype? Slack? but it also based on the Electron.


It seems hard to find a new messaging app that isn't based on Electron.

Mumble is still around, Matrix/Riot seems to be coming along nicely and I think they have voice calls now.

For my group of friends, we just gave in and use Discord now, despite being Electron it does fit our needs pretty well.


Been using riot.im for voice calls and it has been working quite well. Haven't tested video call yet.


Telegram has native client for all major platforms.


This whole naming of Skype app for linux is confusing. This announcement is just that they are retiring their older version of the app and they are asking users to switch to the newer beta version which is missing some features. Ultimately there's still going to be an official app for Linux.


What do they gain by retiring a working app in favour of an unreleased "upgrade"? Is there some problem with the old version that needs immediate upgrade and can't be (security) patched?


final depreciation of p2p and new cloud based calling




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