Overview of how to download and use Skype for internet calling and conferencing.
Download & Install
To download and install Skype:
- Open a web browser and navigate to www.skype.com.
- Click Download Skype. The installation file will be downloaded.
- Click the installation file to open it. By default, the file will be saved to the Downloads folder. The installation file will be a .dmg on Mac or .exe on Windows.
- Follow the installation process.
- Window: click through the installation process.
- Mac: in the new window, click-and-drag the Skype icon to the Applications folder.
Create an Account
To create a Skype Account:
- Launch Skype.
- Click Create Account.
- Click “Use your email instead.” This is the recommended account option. Be aware that a personal email account must be used to create an account; PLU emails will not be accepted.
- Fill out the account information and click through the process.
- A code will be sent to the email address used to create the account. Retrieve the code from the email and enter it when prompted.
- Set up options when prompted, or click Skip to complete later. Options include:
- Theme: the color scheme for Skype.
- Profile picture: click Upload Photo to add a picture stored on the computer.
- Audio settings: set the microphone input and speaker outputs from the drop-downs, which are set to built-in hardware by default.
- Camera connection: set the camera to be used for video calls from the drop-down, which is set to the built-in camera by default.
Skype may ask permission for access to Contacts and other information. This access is optional.
The email used to create the account will be considered your Skype Name.
Add a Contact
When a conversation is initiated between two Skype users, each user will be added as a contact automatically.
To add a contact:
- Click the Contacts button to the top of the panel to the left. A new window will appear.
- In the search bar, type the contact’s Skype Name or email. Results will appear below the search bar.
- Select the desired contact from the search results. The contact window will close and a chat will automatically open.
- Type a message to the bottom of the chat window. and click the Send button. The recipient will receive a connection invitation.
If the desired contact can’t be found, make sure the Skype Name/email is entered correctly. If problems persist, the contact may need to adjust their discoverability settings.
To make a Skype account searchable:
- Click the account profile to the top-left corner. A new window will appear.
- Click “Account and profile.”
- Click “Your profile.” A new tab with profile options will open in a web browser.
- Locate Profile Settings, and ensure the box for “Appear in search results and suggestions” is checked.
Call a Contact
Call options include Video and Audio calls.
To call a contact:
- Select the Contact from the list in the panel to the left. If the contact does not have a profile picture set, only their initials will display. The chat history with the contact will be displayed in the window to the right.
- Click a call option to the top-right corner.
Skype will attempt to call the Contact, whom will receive an invitation to the call. When accepted, the contact will be added to the call. If the contact is unavailable or offline, the call will fail.
Receiving a Call
When receiving a call, a pop-up will appear to the top of the Skype window.
If Skype is on but not in an active window, the call will appear in a separate, small window.
To respond a call, click one of the call options to the right. From left to right, Call options include:
To adjust microphone or webcam settings, such as to set mic volume levels, click the More Options button, which looks like a plus icon, and select Audio & Video Settings from the pop-up.
Skype has a built-in Screen Share, which allows users to display their computer screen or program application window with the attendees of the call. The shared screen will replace the webcam feed of the user sharing their screen. Be aware that all attendees will see everything on the screen, so make sure to hide any sensitive information.
To screen share:
- Create/join a call.
- Click the More Options button, which looks like a plus icon, to the bottom of the Skype window. Select Share Screen from the pop-up.
- Select the desired screen to share. In the example, two screen choices are displayed as the user was using dual monitors.
- Click Share Screen to confirm.
To stop screen sharing, click the More Options button and select Stop Sharing from the pop-up.
Web conferencing Tips
- Position the webcam so that all participants can be seen well.
- Use a Snowball microphone for groups. Center the Snowball between participants.
- Optimize lighting and avoid backlighting when possible.
- Set up a computer, webcam, and microphone before a session.
- Turn off screen-saver and power-saving modes on a computer.