Linux For Cynics One user's experiences with Linux


New Skype 4.0 for Linux

The Linux version of Skype loses its beta status with its first update in years.
Improvements include:

  • New Conversation and call views
  • Improved audio and video Quality
  • Additional Web Cam Support
  • improved chat synchronisation
  • New status icons and emoticons
  • “Tabbed” conversations

If you have the old version of skype, you need to remove it.

sudo apt-get remove skype
sudo apt-get autoremove

The new version of Skype is not available in Ubuntu's repositories yet, so you have to download it from the website: Skype for Linux.

If while trying to install you get an error like this:

pkg: error processing /home/aakkuan/Downloads/skype-ubuntu_4.0.0.7-1_amd64.deb (--install):
trying to overwrite '/etc/dbus-1/system.d/skype.conf', which is also in package skype-bin:i386
dpkg-deb (subprocess): data: internal gzip write error: Broken pipe
dpkg-deb: error: subprocess returned error exit status 2
dpkg-deb (subprocess): failed in write on buffer copy for failed to write to pipe in copy: Broken pipe

It means you haven't completely removed your old Skype install. Make sure to run

 sudo apt-get autoremove

, as mentioned above.

I'm happy and surprised that Microsoft didn't block development of Skype for Linux. I really thought it was going on life support. Now, I haven't had much of a chance to test Skype 4.0 so I don't have an opinion on these improvements yet. Hopefully if it falls short or is buggy, the Linux for Skype dev team will listen to the community and offer updates more frequently than they have in the past.


Microsoft Bans GPL From From Windows Market

Super GNU and Tux
Red Hat employee Jan Wildeboer called attention to a change in the Microsoft Application Provider Agreement in his personal blog. He notes that Microsoft has decreed ABSOLUTELY NO (GPLV3-OR-COMPAT-LICENSED) FREE SOFTWARE FOR WINDOWS PHONE AND XBOX APPS.

The license specifically mentioned is the GPL, which if allowed would put the onus on Microsoft, as the distributor, to fulfill the requirements of the license even tho it was chosen by a developer. Microsoft is covering their own back here, nothing more imho - they could be up for some serious issues if they cocked up GPL compliance, so they are just not going there.

The other way to look at this is that Microsoft is evil. Or something. Whether or not Microsoft perceives Free software as a threat, I see this as just another example of how sometimes FOSS is just not compatible with Microsoft's view of the computing world. The good news? No one gives a shit about Windows Phone. Besides, enough of this nonsense, and no one will care about Xbox "apps" either. To believe Microsoft can define the relevant landscape anymore is delusional, whether you're Microsoft's lawyers or a Red Hat employee.


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