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Blog Posted in avatar   Robert Hill's Blog

Skype for Linux 4.1

By Robert Hill
Posted Nov 21, 2012 in Technology
Three days ago, Skype released a new update to Skype for Linux, to version 4.1, and there has been a good few changes and fixes made in this release. For those of you that have not come across Skype before, it is a client that allows you to talk to people all over the world via VoIP (Voice-Over-Internet Protocol). You can send instant messages, and voice and video calls, which is great if you want to catch up with you cousins in Australia, or possibly your mother and father in India, without spending a penny. There are a few other added features you can have if you pay (all this is done as a pay as you go payments, where you top your account up), this includes calling out to normal phones lines, a phone line for normal phones to ring you and a messages service.
The biggest and most noticeable changes are the integration of Windows Live Messenger, Hotmail and This means that you are also now able to use the credentials from any of these services to connect to Skype, you can also migrate these credentials to your Skype which will then merge the contacts from these services to your Skype and enabling you to talk to your contacts on the Client. Having done this, there has been some changes to the UI (User Interface) that has made it much slicker, especially the login screen for the client.
Moving on, for those more specialized users, Skype have now added the ability to run a second Skype client on your computer for another account, whether that is for a professional account of maybe a full business account. This can easily be done by executing Skype from the command-line, but adding on "-secondary" to the command. Also the guys at Skype have fully implemented the "/golive" command, which makes your life a lot easier with hosting conferences, although this doesn't affect everyone, for those that it does, I am sure they will be extremely pleased.
There has also been some fixes done since the last issue which I am sure will please a lot of people. Firstly, there was a slight issue when switching to HD (High-Definition) and the video would freeze. If someone had any special character's in their name, it would not be displayed properly in the contact list. In a voice call greeting, it would appear that Skype had muted the microphone. There are a few other fixes and they can easily be found on the Skype website.
Certainly the releases for Skype for Linux are really coming along now, and when I found out that Microsoft took over Skype last year, I thought that was it for Skype, especially the Linux client, but they have done quite a good job all in all.

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