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Communications Microsoft Businesses Software Linux

Microsoft Releases 'Next Generation' Preview of Skype For Linux (skype.com) 92

BrianFagioli writes: Friday, Microsoft released a refreshed preview of Skype for Linux. There are both DEB and RPM packages available, making it easy to install on, say, Ubuntu, Debian, or Fedora. In fact, I successfully installed it on Pop!_OS earlier today. Believe it or not, the new interface is quite nice, making it something I could possibly enjoy using on my Linux machine.

"Great news for Skype for Linux users -- the next generation of Skype for Linux is launching!" says The Skype Team. "Starting today, you can download Skype Preview for Linux and start enjoying new features across all your devices -- including screen sharing and group chat. With Skype for Linux, you can take advantage of the screen sharing feature on your desktop screen. Now, you can share content with everyone on the call -- making it even easier to bring your calls to life and collaborate on projects."

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Microsoft Releases 'Next Generation' Preview of Skype For Linux

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 30, 2017 @11:44AM (#55283653)

    If I can't use it on my own private internet.. Then its dead to me, Just like microsoft.

  • No thanks!! (Score:5, Informative)

    by Aethedor ( 973725 ) on Saturday September 30, 2017 @11:49AM (#55283671) Homepage

    We recently bought a Windows 10 laptop for our oldest son. (for schoolstuff, games, etc). He wanted to use Skype, because that's what his friends use for talking while gaming. Skype... what a piece of **** software. After setting up a Microsoft account, Microsoft comes with some bullshit in order to get our phone number (blah blah account abuse blah blah we need to send SMS). Windows 10 and all other Microsoft is nothing but shitty spyware.

    For communication during games, me and some friends use Teamspeak. No bullshit, not spyware, no hustle, it just works. One of these days, I'll offer my son and their friends an account at my Teamspeak server as well. After 2 days, Microsoft already made me hate Skype.

    • by hey! ( 33014 )

      Tech product development can be a lot like the dating scene: the participants usually have different interests in the transaction. In a nutshell, users are looking for sex, product managers are looking for a relationship.

      This drives a lot of the dissatisfaction users have with products.

    • People use Discord as a (voice) chat for gamers nowadays.
      • by Anonymous Coward

        Discord has the same issues as Skype. Centralized everything, 100% controlled by the company, obligatory registrations and what not.

        Apparently people love putting all their eggs into some corporate basket "cause its 5% easier" and when the inevitable happens, then they bitch, piss and moan.

        TeamSpeak is a decentralized solution over which you have full control. Discord is another example of why the net is marching towards the Chinese model of "freedoms", no government intervention required whatsoever.

    • Microsoft comes with some bullshit in order to get our phone number (blah blah account abuse blah blah we need to send SMS)

      Sounds like you didn't set a recovery email. Skype / Microsoft haven't asked for my phone number, though if there's anyone competent at MS they have it from my last RMA which was initiated using the support page linked to my Microsoft account.

      It's a phone number. We used to put them in giant books with lists along with your home address. I can't say I really feel you're being oppressed here.

    • by nadaou ( 535365 )

      Try Jitsi meet. Fully FOSS, no client install needed, runs in the browser. Run your own relay server if you like.

      https://meet.jit.si/ [meet.jit.si]

      • Try Jitsi meet. Fully FOSS, no client install needed, runs in the browser. Run your own relay server if you like.

        Website that doesn't work AT ALL unless you enable javascript.

        (Sure you need to give them access to your browser to run the software. But just to find out about it?)

    • For communication during games, me and some friends use Teamspeak. No bullshit, not spyware, no hustle, it just works.

      If Teamspeak is proprietary software as Wikipedia's Teamspeak entry says it is [wikipedia.org], you're making claims beyond your knowledge. Part of your description uses terms which have no clearly agreed-upon definition, and you have no idea if Teamspeak is spyware now or will become so later. For all we know, Teamspeak "just works" to implement its developers' ends implemented via proprietary malware [gnu.org]. The

    • "... Microsoft comes with some bullshit in order to get our phone number (blah blah account abuse blah blah we need to send SMS)..."

      I am annoyed with this from many companies like Google, MS, AOL (AIM), etc.

  • by lalleglad ( 39849 ) on Saturday September 30, 2017 @11:57AM (#55283697)

    As with all closed source, you never really know what is going on underneath.
    I know that most people don't actually check open source software, but at least the possibility is there, which should keep people creating it more honest.

    As MS is not the friend of Open Source or Free Software, and never has been, I am always reluctant to use their software, especially on Linux, which they still really really don't like!

    • by ledow ( 319597 )

      It's recording your voice and video and sending to server which relays it to a third-party. That much is obvious, because that's what it's for.

      If you mean "what ELSE is it doing on my computer", that's what permissions are for. It's literally not a worry if you have any semblance of a secure setup whatsoever.

      If you mean "what ELSE are MS doing with the data except sending it to the person the other end", that's a question for Microsoft, data protection regulators, and server-operators.

      But NONE of those qu

      • Hi 'ledow'

        Thank you so much for your candid answer, as this was one type of response that I could have hoped for!

        In the networked world, I am always concerned about where my data and profiles go, but with companies like MS I am very concerned.
        My suspicious mind probably is based on the fact that I started with MS-DOS 3.1 and Windows 2.01 in the 1980'ies and I haven't seen anything good from that company since.

        Therefore, discussions on what it is and for what, and inputs like this one from you is very import

        • The problem is, the way our interconnected networks are designed ("the internet") basically guarantees that your data is being read or recorded by someone, somewhere, even if they aren't the intended recipient. Just take a gander at how many hops appear during a routine traceroute. Any one of them could be having fun with your data and there is nothing you can do about it basically. Sure, we created band-aids like TLS and HTTPS to try to remedy the (many) fundamental design flaws, but there is really only s

    • As will all software, you don't know for sure. 1. Unless you compile it yourself, how do you know that the source code published on the website is the same that as was used to compile the software? 2. Even if you compile it yourself, did you write and compile your own compiler? 3. And modern CPUs run into a billion plus of transistors per chip. E.g. core count aside, a modern Intel CPU represents more than one computer. There's the main computer plus a second set of transistors organized into a second co
      • P.S. and even if you trust the CPU, mobo chips, the compiler, and that the source as published is the source used to compile -- how do you know some programmer didn't pull a tricky dickie in all those hundreds of thousands or millions of lines of code ??
  • Does anyone remember back when Microsoft decided to unceremoniously remove A/V support [slashdot.org] from the linux version? Calls stopped working without any notice, and a fix took at least four months [slashdot.org].

    No thanks. I will never rely on Skype ever again. The good news is that in 2017, there are many alternatives [alternativeto.net] which work just as well, if not better. Pick one and help it grow.

    • Alternatives to anything is nice, but unless they're 100% compatible with the software your friends , co-workers and boss uses, it's pointless.
  • Lest you forget... (Score:5, Informative)

    by Gravis Zero ( 934156 ) on Saturday September 30, 2017 @12:19PM (#55283811)

    Microsoft spies on you and they sell your information to interested parties: New NSA Leaks Confirm That Microsoft Skype is a Wiretapping Hub [techrights.org]

  • by gaiageek ( 1070870 ) on Saturday September 30, 2017 @12:35PM (#55283867) Homepage
    Honest question. One of the appeals of Linux is that there are distros that run well on old systems with 2GB of RAM (or less), which I've usually paired with a 32-bit release. Now I guess I have to upgrade those systems to a 64-bit one if the person wants to run Skype. (Maybe this is a good argument to convince them to use something else...)
    • Perhaps it's due to Cannoical dropping support for 32 bit in the next version of Ubuntu

    • linux is moving away from 32bit.
    • 64 bit stuff was out over a decade ago. You've had that long to upgrade. Tell you what, next trash day I'll drive around and pick you up something 64 bit.

      • by tepples ( 727027 )

        64 bit stuff was out over a decade ago.

        A Dell Inspiron mini 1012 laptop sold in the first quarter of 2010, less than a decade ago, shipped with a 64-bit-capable Atom N450 processor. But it had 1 GB of RAM, upgradable to 2 GB. What advantage does 64-bit on a 1 or 2 GB machine have over 32-bit on the same machine? Does the larger register count compensate for data cache pressure from larger pointers and for swap pressure when it has to load the 32-bit libraries to run a Wine app?

    • 32-bit vs 64-bit is not likely to be noticeable unless the processor does not support x86-64. If the processor does support 64-bit memory addressing, then I would probably consider it misguided to install a 32-bit OS, particularly in light of these kind of compatibility issues.

  • Every time I try to go to blogs.skype.com I get redirected to a microsoft.com landing page?!
    Tried in firefox and chromium..
  • This new version is "Skype: Next Generation".

    The next version will be called "Skype: Deep Scan 9".

    The following version will be called "Skype: Voyage into your Data".

    The version after that will be called "Skype: We sell your Data to Enterprises".

    And the final version will be "Skype: You've Discovered our Plan but it's Too Late".

  • It's the correct number, but I've never seen the code arrive and the app just turns itself off.

    What utter bullshit.

  • by gavron ( 1300111 ) on Saturday September 30, 2017 @03:08PM (#55284601)

    I fired up the preview and it insisted it wanted my date of birth.

    I entered 1/1/2017.

    It told me I had to get my parents' permission, and they had to go sign up on account.microsoft.com for that.

    Exiting the preview and restarting makes no difference. Skype/Microsoft now "knows" the Skype account
    I've had for 17 years belongs to someone who is 10 months old tomorrow. Wow.

    I won't be using Skype anytime ever again, I guess, or maybe in 18 years?

    Thanks for sucking as usual, Microsoft. Nothing weird about having a broken software lock me out of something I've been using for ages.

    E

    • by rcase5 ( 3781471 )

      Skype/Microsoft now "knows" the Skype account I've had for 17 years belongs to someone who is 10 months old tomorrow. Wow.

      Thanks for sucking as usual, Microsoft. Nothing weird about having a broken software lock me out of something I've been using for ages.

      Yeah, that's pretty typical. Microsoft's stuff is usually pretty brain-dead until it comes back to bite them in the ass. Then they layer on fix after fix after fix, making it bloated and slow by the time they get it right, if they ever do at all, usually to salvage a feature idea that was probably a really bad idea in the first place. I've seen it over and over again, and then people wonder why I dislike Microsoft products so much.

      I won't be using Skype anytime ever again, I guess, or maybe in 18 years?

      13 years. The Child Online Protection Act (COPA) requires that any online ser

  • by blind biker ( 1066130 ) on Saturday September 30, 2017 @04:30PM (#55284933) Journal

    Ever since Microsoft bought Skype, the following two things keep happening:
    - every time you update Skype (or better say, are forced to update because otherwise you're not allowed to use Skype), you can't log into Skype with your existing password - you are forced to reset it. This is a fucking pain in the ass for no good reason, because you then have to update the password on every single device that has Skype installed, whether Skype was updated there or not.
    - you are forced to regularly use your Skype balance, otherwise it will be simply lost after a number of months (I don't remember how long, anymore). Last time I had some money on my Skype balance but decided on purpose to let it expire - and to NEVER get any Skype balance anymore, ever again in my life.
    I'm now using Viber, and I've moved most of my friends over to it. Sometimes I even use FB messenger video-calls. Anything to avoid Skype.

    Fuck you Microsoft. You turdify everything you touch.

  • I guess that, by now, you already know where you can stick it.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Why are you using it?

  • Looks a lot better than the earlier version.
    Takes a whopping 1 GB of RAM.
    I remember when it used to consume 30-40 MB.

    Reminds me of MS VS Code in that sense. Very functional, but consumes more RAM than it should for that functionality.

  • I am afraid it's a case of too little too late. Skype on Windows and Linux has been a complete and utter mess since Microsoft took over. At this point I've migrated all my contacts over to Discord. It does everything Skype does, but better.

  • That gorgeous new interface, like all of the halfway-recent versions of Skype, is hideously wasteful of screen space. Don't they understand people do other things on their computers at the same time Skype is running?

  • The "new" Skype client is an alternate interface to their new webclient. There are a number of alternative clients that use the same interface. I use Ghetto-Skype and found it to be stable and working pretty nice.

    https://github.com/stanfieldr/... [github.com]

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