Linux Notes - Skype Sound Issues

Skype - Sound

Skype is available for download for Linux but often has problems with the sound.  Go to Options>Sound Devices, if PulseAudio is the only sound device option then this is likely to be the cause of the problem.   It is because pulse is installed and it is either already running or it can also be autospawned by Skype or other applications. To resolve the issue it is necessary to switch back to using ALSA and prevent PulseAudio from auto-spawning.  To disable auto-spawn, edit or create the file ~/.pulse/client.conf in your home directory and add a line containing "autospawn = no" there.

Then to start and stop PulseAudio so that other applications are able to use it:

pulseaudio --start
pulseaudio --kill

With PulseAudio stopped you should find that there are a range of options for sound devices.  Choose the best option for your hardware and distribution (probably Default)  and Skype sound should function.

A GUI application written in Python to easily turn on and off  PulseAudio can be found at PulseAudioControl. To run this application ensure that it is placed in a location that can be found in the PATH variable and ensure that it has executable permissions.  The application is very simple and was written using the graphical rapid application development package Illumination which has been developed by Radical Breeze.  Details about this package can be found at  I run Ubuntu and have placed PulseAudioControl in the top panel to make it quick and easy to access. Please feel free to download PulseAudioControl from the links on this page.  You can also download and use the icon on this page by right clicking and choosing "Save Image".   PulseAudioControl is offered freely without warranty for use at your own discretion under the GPL2 licence.  (The application is currently at alpha version 0.0,  however,  it is very simple and  appears to be stable and without issues.)