Rolling back the Skype versions

Skype.pngWith the version count sitting at 3.8 for Windows, Internet telephony giant Skype isn't shy about rolling out the updates. That's great when they work, but my recent experiences trying to upgrade to 3.8 have been painful: no sound at all for a week, then -- just as technical support were starting to take me seriously -- basic sound returned, but with 10 seconds silence every minute or so. Not good enough.

The best solution in this case would seem to be rolling back to an earlier working package, but Skype doesn't make that easy: its installation routine comprehensively ditches the previous version, and only the latest release is ever available at its site. Thank goodness for Filehippo, which maintains a comprehensive archive of Skype releases. I wouldn't want to guarantee they'll all work with the current infrastructure, but if an upgrade starts playing nasty and stuff was working fine before, this is the first place to check in (after taking a deep breath, of course).


    Congratulations, you hit the nail squarely on the head. Skype has essentially no "technical support" whatsoever, so their users are left to their own resourcefulness. Sometimes going back to previous versions helps solve a problem - but be careful, because many of those older versions have well-known and easily exploitable security problems.

    Perhaps the best solution, both for the user to get a VoIP/IM program that actually works, and to send Skype a signal that users will not accept being treated with contempt the way Skype does. Three excellent alternatives are ooVoo (, SightSpeed (, and Gizmo5 (, and all three have very good technical support.

    Of course, the 'network effect' plays a role here -- everyone already uses Skype, so it's hard to get everyone to change. (Same story for eBay, naturally.) The other downside is that people look for the security holes harder. If any of these became more popular than Skype, I bet more flaws would emerge.
    Of the three alternatives you mention, the only one I've tried was Gizmo, which I couldn't get to work for conference calls at all -- seemed fine for basic telephony.

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