Getting Started with Skype on Linux

I bought a new webcam few days ago (Tevion MD85872) and had in mind to use it for video conferencing with my family and friends, and this – yes – with Linux. I’ve tried a few messengers, which were told to be able to work with Linux regarding video transmissions. This is the

  • MSN messenger and
  • Yahoo! messanger

ICQ doesn’t support video on Linux, and all other application available, doesn’t talk to the messengers my friends and family is using.
Long story short, I didn’t manage to make MSN or Yahoo! work.
A friend of mine said, I should use Skype, and I’ve tried it also. And surprise surprise, this is the only video conferencing software, which was running almost out of the box. I’m Ubuntu 8.10 x86_64 (Intrepid Ibex) right now, and got my repositories from here. Just update your /etc/apt/sources.list and trust them.

## Medibuntu - Ubuntu 8.10 "intrepid ibex"
## Please report any bug on
deb intrepid free non-free
#deb-src intrepid free non-free

Perform now a

apt-get update && apt-get install skype

Look here for your Linux Distro:

Here I had my first problem. I was looking in the Internet for the site where I can register, but even the homepage didn’t offer a “Register now” or stuff on their page. Finally I’ve just started the application itself without having a working account yet. And there it was, the “Don’t have a Skype Name yet?”. No verification email was necessary, and I could start using Skype already. The video was working right out of the box. Only my own preview window wasn’t visible, although it was checked (selected) in the ‘Main Menu’ in the most lower left corner.
I solved this problem by accident. I’ve just went into fullscreen and back, then unchecked the preview feature again, and went into fullscreen again. Coming back, the preview video window was visible in the lower left corner of the video screen.