Skype alternative

Dear friends,

Last two days I am trying to find alternative to skype. I started to hate it… I do not like even the idea to use it.
It is soooo closed…

So I decided to find solution for my family, friends to chat, call (audio, video) using opensource product on linux.

I have tried the following:
(using same clients and gtalk accounts on both test machines)

  1. kopete 1.0.80
    Firstly, I like it because it is native in opensuse KDE system.
    Secondly, it has optional jungle support for gtalk, which is ok for me.
    The only problem, I cannot turn on jingle support, because there should be server , but the right server is
    Only with server I can connect to my gtalk.
    UPDATE: I was managed to do it right, but my friends do not have jingle settings (libjingle installed). What should we do?
    Will we be able to talk when we activate it? Has anybody talked like this?

  2. pidgin 2.7.10 (libpurple 2.7.10)
    Video calling, audio calling doesn’t work at all.
    We using same version of pidgin on two computers, there is mention that it is calling but no progress after, nothing…
    Even camera turns on (no image though) but after doesn’t turn off (camera light). Weird)))

  3. psi 0.14 patched
    Psimedia installed, doesn’t call at all. Says that the client reject me or busy.

  4. empathy 2.32.2
    No options for video and audio hardware, nothing to change at all)
    Call from menu doesn’t work, nothing happens after I press “call”.
    Call from chat window impossible because buttons are grey, are not active.
    Update: now error “could not sync the state of the new nicesrc with its parent”

  5. gajim
    Even after writing down stun server call buttons for video and audio call were inactive, unable to make call.

  6. ekiga
    Works ok, sometimes problems with intiating video, but still something.
    I am not very happy because it is not XMPP. =)

  7. twinkle works like a charm. The only one client using which I haven’t had any problems at all. The only thing to tailor is audio codec (also encryption if you like).

Dear users, gurus of OpenSuse distributive, can you please help me to find a solution, to find real alternative to this closed ****?

I hope to make a call one day and to be sure that I haven’t used any closed program for it! =)

So I assume that nobody cares at all about skype =)

I have tried ekiga and it works ok for video and audio calls.

Now I would like to ask if somebody knows about one-program-solution, I mean, I can use ekiga for calling, but there is no encryption for text or voice calls. So still have to use: twinkle, kopete, ekiga - three programs, not one or two)

P.S. I hope, someday will come and GNU witch will do everything…

On 06/25/2011 10:06 AM, veisong wrote:
> So I assume that nobody cares at all about skype =)

faulty logic springs from bad assumptions…

> I have tried ekiga and it works ok for video and audio calls.
> Now I would like to ask if somebody knows about one-program-solution

try MS-Skype, even with all its warts it works so far, and for years
here…and i can still call FREE to my MS-Skype using friends and
family all over the earth…

and i just LOVE using MS-Skype in a way that puts zero money into Mr.
Bill’s pockets…

now, when Redmond gets around to making sure MS-Skype won’t run on
non-MS operating systems, then i’ll switch to using a telephone (i can
live without the video, i did for a LOT of years) or hope you have found
the non-MS-Skype one-program-solution :wink:

25 June: Sunrise 4:38 AM, Sunset 10:12 PM


Why dont u lke to use skype on openosuse?

I dont like idea of skype being sold to microsoft but like denverd mentioned using skype doesnt put any $ to microsoft pocket. So many people use skype so it makes difficult to find alternative for it which works so well. I use android as well as opensuse and in both of them use skype cos every of my friends, family uses skype and dont bother anything else…
cant realy find any opensource alternative which can call to skype, if u find something post it here :slight_smile:

That’s simply not true for two reasons:

  • Mr. Bill - as you call him - has retired for years … and I guess he doesn’t care anymore about Ballmer’s mess… After polluting brains for many years, he’s now busy saving lives around the world.
  • Skype makes money by routing other calls through your computer. That’s also the reason why they don’t allow you to disable the voicemail (which is paid service by the way) when you are offline but only when you are connected, so they can use your bandwith. Endusers might never had run etherape or just look away and enjoy Skype. But that’s true for everything: when you don’t care, you just don’t care.

Google Voice is the alternative and will kill Skype sooner or later. The Peer2Peer VoIP technology in Skype sucks since the beginning. Google was considering buying Skype before Ebay time, but they had better advisors. I’m happy that MS did, as they perfectly belong together.

Just my 2 cents.

Once a Zyxel router I used reported some of the skype activities as UDP attacks. After checking the details of one such report it turned out that I had a p2p connection with some guy from a nearby university (by checking the public IP of the peer host).

Best regards,

On 06/27/2011 04:36 AM, please try again wrote:
> That’s simply not true for two reasons:

good points…

but, are you saying that if Skype helps the MS bottom line then stock
owners won’t have more money? (and, don’t you know Mr. Bill is a
gigantic stock holder)

and, i’m aware of the ‘shared’ nature of using Skype, which i launch it,
use it, and shut it down…i know many use it as another chat
client…not me, i use it as an alternative to VERY expensive commercial
phone rates in this country…i can talk to friends in other countries
FAR FAR less expensively than picking up a land line…then, i shut it down.

on the other hand i do need to look at google talk…when i find a
roundtoit… :wink:

[will it import my huge skype phonebook?]


Yes I know, but he might still not care. … Maybe he found a religion or a wisdom or some kind of moral over the years. Anyway mentioning Bill Gates while referring to Microsoft doesn’t sound as correct as it used to be - although he will probably remain a legendary character.

I know, and you know that I know. I’m aware of the amount of money you can save by using Skype for local and international calls. I can also provide a very simple example. On the day, as I decided to cancel my landline, I ran to the Apple authorized reseller at the corner and bought an iMac. Why? Just for fun - which is always a good reason - and because I wanted to use a phone device with Skype and not look as ridiculous as a travel agency employee wearing a headset. It worked very well, cost almost nothing and within a year and a half or so, it entirely covered the cost of the iMac (which I’m now using with openSUSE since I don’t call anyone anymore). But the cost of the landline and the call rates - FAR FAR FAR FAR too expensive here - were not the true reason why I switched to Skype. I was just tired of being called every day from 8 AM to 9 PM, invited to help children all over the world, donate for any kind of medical research about diseases I could not even understand or pronounce the name, asked about my opinion about almost everything, ask from my bank if I was happy with their services and asked from other banks if I wouldn’t be happier with their services, asked if I needed a car insurance while I don’t have a car, asked if I wanted to have my wooden house repainted while I live in a beton apartment, asked about my voting intention while I’m not a citizen … and finally asked if I would like to make donations to the orphans and widows of the local police. At this point, yes, the phone harassment went to far (not to mention that the no call list helped nothing … on the contrary!) and I switched to Skype in order to have control over incoming calls. It wasn’t that easy because most of those call center bastards were “out of area” or used unidentifiable numbers. But it was a bit better with Skype.

Now … what brought me suddenly to change my mind? Actually, if you dare to write that you LOVE Skype … I could probably write that I HATE Skype, as exaggerated it might sound from both of us. First off it should be mentioned that Skype policies and offers are different from one country to another and that it has to conform with the legislation and regulations of the different countries. So users around the world have made different experiences with Skype and might have different reasons to complain - or not - about its services. In my particular case - and according to many discussions and complains, which I suspect have been removed in the meantime from Skype user forums , I wasn’t the only one - the voice mail feature which was NOT optional and NOT free, as it came with Skype IN, which was NECESSARY to use Skype OUT in order to make local calls for free or international calls - at extremely low rates as everybody knows already - could simply not be disabled. It was not a bug. Every participant to this discussion on Skype forum quickly came to the conclusion that it was intentional. So you were forced to stay connected - and Skype could use your connection to route other calls - or you could make a call forwarding - which cost you money. It didn’t just affect individuals wishing not to receive voice mails but also companies unable to get their calls in time, which finally turned their back on Skype. IMHO, It’s a matter of a couple years until Skype becomes irrelevant. You will find more and more former Skype users sharing other or similar experiences.

And of course, we don’t care about how Skype treats his employees … but just in case it matters to some of you, here’s a pertinent article with accurate links about what went on recently: Skype’s evil ways, cont. | Felix Salmon… but of course, we don’t care … as long as we can call at low rates world wide, whether we have interesting stories to tell or not.

On 06/27/2011 11:06 PM, please try again wrote:
> but of course, we
> don’t care … as long as we can call at low rates world wide, whether
> we have interesting stories to tell or not.

AH! now i remember (but had forgotten your “Skype story”)…so, i’m
about ready to get ready to dump Skype and move to a more consumer
friendly alternative (while i can still use Skype free)…


Microsoft patent may ruin Skype, may make VoIP spy and pry easy for gov’t

A Microsoft patent mentions both law enforcement and government having a need to sometimes “monitor communications,” but is aimed at VoIP “recording agents” for “silently recording communications,” and possibly indicates future Skype surveillance.

On 06/28/2011 01:06 PM, V12Jaguar wrote:
> (

it is far too late to worry about governments/police knowing everything
you do…“legally”…

it is far easier to just not break the law…and, then not worry about
them watching/listening…

if you don’t like the laws where you live, move!


On Tue, 28 Jun 2011 17:57:09 +0530, DenverD
<> wrote:

> it is far too late to worry about governments/police knowing everything
> you do…“legally”…
> it is far easier to just not break the law…and, then not worry about
> them watching/listening…
> if you don’t like the laws where you live, move!

…and if that’s not an option, for whatever reasons, don’t talk about it


On 06/28/2011 03:52 PM, phanisvara wrote:
> …and if that’s not an option, for whatever reasons, don’t talk about
> it online.

or offline… (on the phone, in the mail, etc)
or in the pub…
or with any clothed person…
or . . .


Not breaking the law is an unnecessary and insufficient condition. What matters is being able to prove that you didn’t break it. Not the same.

Sype is not free (freedom meaning) =) That is enough for


That is why I am trying to find other solution and I have already found it.
It is SIP. I am using twinkle for ZRTP and Ekiga for video and audio calling.
I also does not care if there are people who only use skype… It’s a pity, but have to talk from now on using: jabber, SIP or email.
I do not even want to enter google game. I understand they are big company and that is why I do not like them, their service policy…

You still think that… =))))) I think no) You also understand now that skype is the thing which you should be afraid of or better say should be aware of, because you are not in control over it, as well as in SIP provider, but using free (freedom meaning!) client under GPL… At least I will be more sure in it, what it does and why, and if I need ZRTP, here it is, in twinkle, for example.

If anybody need to call to real phone numbers there are always hundreds of SIP providers. For example, in Russia the best are and

When I exited skype, oh… Because it was like social network for me (facebook), 100-ds of unimportant contact=waste of time. I like to talk with my friends and relatives, but when, for example, business contacts start to “waste” your time. For me it was always better to write good email rather than 10-15 posts in skype.


So answer for now is EKIGA.
There are:

  • messages,
  • SIP-SIP communication
  • can call to real phone number
  • people can call to my mobile (even if I am offline), because there is always routing settings in your SIP provides account.

Ekiga has been an alternative to Skype since the beginning. I’m not sure it’s not even older than Skype. I tried it couple years ago on Unix - as it was in the BSD port collection. It’s truly open source. I’m glad it works for you (it didn’t for me but that was years ago …)

As for Google, I agree: they’re all gangsters. What Skype does is simply not acceptable. Google might do the same … but I cannot prove it yet. The technology is different though. Skype’s Peer2Peer just sucks.

Skype might be widely used now but IMHO since Microsoft bought it, it’s just a matter of a couple years until it dies (and that’s why I considered it to be a good news ) Everything some people touch turns to gold - like Bill Gates in his early days and Steve Job. But everything Ballmer touches turn to ****. With Skype it won’t be difficult because that’s what it already is. lol!

I’m a Skype user (mostly only for video chatting with immediate family). I have not YET been able to get the Skype alternatives to provide anywhere near the Skype user friendliness nor performance. In fact, after spending a couple of hours checking different packages, I simply gave up trying for now. IMHO the alternatives are simply too user unfriendly to use or too performance/feature limited. WAY TOO user friendly or WAY TOO performance/feature limited.

IMHO Skype is simply dominant here.

I do HOPE there is progress there for alternatives.

Reference some of the less than favourable views about Skype and their policies, here is some more ammunition (?) to support those views:

Notice that last time I tried to install Skype on Unix (I guess it was on FreeBSD but I’m not sure), it didn’t work (it actually used the Linux emulator) and I read that they weren’t going to support it anymore and were looking for an alternative - as I mentioned already, ekiga was there since the beginning. A growing number of people at different levels and for different reasons don’t want Skype anymore. Skype’s website for customers (I’m not talking about the program) wasn’t designed to be user friendly at all. This is one of the worst websites I’ve seen. Customer service lies without shame and without imagination.

Try a full HTML/Flash alternative to skype : Bistri: one-click video chat

A very good Skype alternative is RHUB`s web conferencing servers. It works on Linux, Unix, Windows, MAC etc and provides free audio conferencing, HD Video conferencing, chat etc.