FAQ

Technical Issues > Connection problems
  • Sometimes you may see the "Disk I/O error" message when attempting to sign in to Skype.
     
    To resolve this problem, make sure that you are using the latest version of Skype.



    However, if the same error happens again, choose your operating system from the list below and follow the steps:
     

    Windows 8 Desktop
     

    There are two possible fixes for the Disk I/O error. The first is to delete and re-create your user folder:
     
    1. Quit Skype. If you can see the Skype icon in the taskbar (at the bottom right of your screen), right-click it and select Quit.
    If you cannot see the Skype icon, use Task Manager to close Skype. Simply press Ctrl+Alt+Delete and click Start Task Manager. In the Applications tab, select Skype, then click End Task.

    2. In the Start screen, press the Windows key  on your keyboard or, if you’re using a touchscreen, swipe from the right edge of the screen and select Start. Windows 8 switches to the desktop.



    3. Open the File Explorer then copy and paste the following path to the address bar:
       %appdata%\Skype

    4. Look for the folder with the same name as your Skype Name and delete it.
       If you're signing in with your Microsoft account, the folder will start with live#3.
     
    This will delete your chat history. To save your chat history, open the above folder and copy the main.db file and the chatsync folder to another location. You will be able to transfer them back (described in step 6, below). Be aware that we cannot guarantee your entire chat history will be restored.
     
    5. Restart Skype and sign in with your Skype Name and password.

    6. The folder you deleted in step 4 will be recreated. If you saved your chat history files (described in step 4, above), transfer them back into the folder with the same name as your Skype Name.
     
    The second solution fixes a problem where you changed your environment variables (temporary files) to a location outside your profile, and are therefore missing some necessary permissions. These steps use the example of C:\Temp for the temporary folder, but it can be any location you set up for temporary files. To fix this error:
     
    1. Quit Skype.

    2. Browse to C:\ on your computer and right-click the Temp folder (C:\Temp).



    3. Click Properties.

    4. Click the Security tab.

    5. Click Edit.

    6. Click Add in the Permissions for Temp window that opens.

    7. Make sure the From this location field shows your PC name. If it does not, perform the following before going on to step 7:
     
    • Click Location.
    • Select your PC name from the Locations list.
    • Click OK.
     
    8. In the Object names to select box, enter ALL APPLICATION PACKAGES.

    9. Click Check Names; the ALL APPLICATION PACKAGES will be underlined.

    10. Click OK.

    11. ALL APPLICATION PACKAGES will be added to the list of accounts able to access the C:\Temp folder.

    12. Click the check boxes for Full control, Modify, Read & execute, List folder contents, and Read and Write to grant ALL APPLICATION PACKAGES full control.

    13. Click OK to close the Permissions for Temp window.

    14. Click OK to close the Temp properties window.

    15. Re-open and re-run Skype.

     
    Windows 7
     
     
    1. Quit Skype. If you can see the Skype icon in the taskbar (at the bottom right of your screen), right-click it and select Quit.
    If you cannot see the Skype icon, use Task Manager to close Skype. Simply press Ctrl+Alt+Delete and click Start Task Manager. In the Applications tab, select Skype, then click End Task.
     
    2. Click Start > Control Panel. From the menu bar, select Tools > Folder Options….
     
    3. Click the View tab.
     
    4. Under Advanced settings, select Show hidden files, folders and drives, then click OK.



    5. In Windows Explorer, navigate to: C:\Users\<your_windows_username>\AppData\Roaming\Skype (Where <your_windows_username> is your Windows user name).

    6. Look for the folder with the same name as your Skype name and delete it. If you're signing in with your Microsoft account, the folder will start with live#3.
     
    This will delete your chat history. To save your chat history, open the above folder and copy the main.db file and the chatsync folder to another location. You will be able to transfer them back (described in step 7 below). Be aware that we cannot guarantee your entire chat history will be restored.
     
    7. Restart Skype and sign in with your Skype name and password. If you forget your password, these instructions tell you what to do.
     
    8. The folder you deleted in step 6 will be re-created. If you saved your chat history files (described in step 6), transfer them back into the folder with the same name as your Skype name.


     
  • Your internet connection (or your friend's) are the main source of problems you might encounter with calls and video calls on Skype. Connection issues can take many forms: shaky or blocky video, low-quality audio, dropped calls, and silences or odd background noise.
     
     All calls are composed of two (or more, in the case of a group call) connections – yours and the person to whom you are talking – so it's possible the problem might not be on your end at all. However, there are a few things you can try to improve your connection and Skype experience.
     
    * Skype for Windows Desktop



    Using the Call Quality Monitor
     
    First, check the Call Quality Monitor while you're on a call to check your connection speed. It’s located at the bottom-right corner of your Skype call window (you might need to move your mouse to get it to show up).


     
    White ( ) – Good connection; you and your friend both have fast connections.
     Yellow ( ) – Medium connection; should still work for voice calls.
     Red ( ) – Poor connection; either you or your friend don't have sufficient bandwidth to ensure a good Skype call.


    Improving your connection
     

    There are a few things you can try to improve the quality of your connection:
     
    • If using WiFi, try moving to improve your signal strength or connect directly to your router using an Ethernet cable.

    • Close any programs that are using your connection: for example, file-sharing applications, download managers, streaming audio or video, etc. This will ensure that Skype can take advantage of the available bandwidth you have.

    • If all else fails, we suggest speaking to your internet service provider. They can test your connection.
     
    Firewalls can also affect your connection, so make sure that Skype isn't blocked in your firewall settings. Learn more about firewall settings in Windows XP, Windows 7 and Windows 8/8.1. Also, routers or any other non-direct connection can affect your connection speed (firewalls and routers might create a relayed connection). To see if your connection is being relayed:
     
    1. Make a Skype-to-Skype call.

    2. In the menu bar, click Call > Call Technical Info.

    3. A box with technical information related to the call will be displayed. If the call is relayed, the word
    next to SessionOut and SessionIn will be RELAY_UDP or RELAY_TCP.
     
    If you're on a relayed connection, there might not be much you can do to improve your connection speed; try making audio calls instead of video, or connecting directly to your router or modem with an ethernet cable.
     
    Your Internet Explorer settings can also cause a problem (even if you don't use Internet Explorer as your primary browser), but it's really easy to reset these settings. Simply follow the steps in this article.
     
    Remember, everything may be good at your end, but your friend may have an issue with their connection. Suggest that they take a look at this guide as well.
     
     
    * Skype for Mac

     

    Your internet connection might be too slow to support video calls. Try making just a voice call instead.
     
    Close other applications that may be using your connection (like streaming audio or video) to increase your internet bandwidth. Learn more about the bandwidth that Skype needs to use.
     
    If you're using WiFi, make sure you‘re in a location with full signal.
     
    Also, routers or any other non-direct connection can affect your connection speed (firewalls and routers might create a relayed connection). To see if your connection is being relayed:
     
    1. Make a Skype-to-Skype call.

    2. In the menu bar, click Call > Call Technical Info.

    3. A box with technical information related to the call will be displayed. If the call is relayed, the word next to SessionOut and SessionIn will be RELAY_UDP or RELAY_TCP.
     
    Remember, everything may be good at your end, but your friend may have an issue with their connection. Suggest that they take a look at this guide as well.
     
  • The bandwidth required by Skype depends on the type of calls you want to make. The table below provides the minimum download and upload speeds required, as well as the recommended speeds for best performance
     
    Call type Minimum download
    / upload speed
    Recommended download
    / upload speed
    Calling 30kbps / 30kbps 100kbps / 100kbps
    Video calling / Screen sharing 128kbps / 128kbps 300kbps / 300kbps
    Video calling
    (high-quality)
    400kbps / 400kbps 500kbps / 500kbps
    Video calling
    (HD)
    1.2Mbps / 1.2Mbps 1.5Mbps / 1.5Mbps
    Group video
    (3 people)
    512kbps / 128kbps 2Mbps / 512kbps
    Group video
    (5 people)
    2Mbps / 128kbps 4Mbps / 512kbps
    Group video
    (7+ people)
    4Mbps / 128kbps 8Mbps / 512kbps
     
    If you are signed in to Skype but not making any calls, Skype will use on average 0-4kbps. When you make a call, Skype will use on average between 24-128kbps. You can find out how much bandwidth a video call is using.
     
    To find out if your internet connection is fast enough to make a Skype call (using Skype for Windows Desktop):


    1. In the Contact list, select the contact you wish to call.

    2. In the conversation header, click the Check settings button.

    3. In the Connection tab, click Test Now.



    4. Skype will test the internet connection between you and your contact and display the results.



    Audio calls should be possible with most internet connections. Video calls use a lot more bandwidth, so if you are having issues with the quality of your video calls, we recommend:
     
    •Closing other applications that use the internet, especially those playing music or video.

    •Cancelling any file transfers in progress.
     
    If this does not resolve your problem, you may need to increase your bandwidth. Contact your Internet Service Provider if you need more information regarding your download and upload speeds.
     

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