Home How to Make Skype Portable via USB

How to Make Skype Portable via USB

By Guest Blogger Mark O’Neill

One of the most commonly requested features by Skype forum users is the ability
to use the telephony tool from a USB flash drive. As yet, Skype has
not got around to making an official portable version and even the John Haller
website, which has made portable versions of everything from
doesn’t seem to be in any hurry to make a portable version of Skype either.

The reluctance is inexplicable, because a portable version of Skype could
take off in a big way due to the enormous popularity of USB flash drives. For a start,
businesspeople on trips could plug their portable Skype into computers which
don’t already have the Skype application downloaded, in order to make contact
with the office or clients. Tourists could also plug their USB
drives into internet cafe computers and run portable Skype to call home or keep
in touch with friends all over the world. Being portable, any
identifying information that Skype produces would be written onto the USB stick
and not on the host computer, which is ideal for people who are not inclined to
log into their Skype accounts on a computer they don’t know or trust, for fear
of leaving behind sensitive information.

However, it IS technically possible to make an unofficial portable version of
Skype yourself and here’s how you do it.

First of all, make a folder for your portable application. For the
purposes of this discussion, let’s call it “Skype Portable”. Next, go into the installed Skype folder on your computer (download the
program first if you haven’t already got it). Find the file
“skype.exe” and copy it (right-click on the file and choose
“copy”). Then place the copied file inside your Skype Portable
folder by right-clicking inside the folder and choose “insert”.

Next, inside the Skype Portable folder, make another new folder and name it
“data”. Inside the data folder, open a new file with Microsoft
Notepad.    Name the file “skype.bat” and inside this notepad
file, place the following line: skype.exe /datapath:”Data” /removable
Save and close.

Move the entire Skype Portable file over to your USB flash drive. Congratulations, you now have a working portable version of
Skype which can be run from a USB drive. A bit rough and ready,
but it does the job.

Considering how easy this process is, it’s mystifying why Skype is dragging
their heels bringing out an official portable version of their
software. It’s true that there is a portable version
pre-installed on the SanDisk U3 Cruzer Smart Drive, but what is really needed is
an all-purpose portable version which can be used on all USB drives, not just
the U3. The U3’s exclusivity is a lot like Microsoft forcing you to
use their software by having it pre-installed at the factory – and that doesn’t
bode well for user choice and freedom.

Mark O’Neill is a freelance
writer, editor and blogger. He can be contacted on Skype via the username

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