Skype is a proprietary voice over Internet application that allows you to call other Skype users or real telephone lines. If you happen to use Skype for business or some other important calls that you might want to record, you will need additional software.
There are several ways to record inbound and outbound audio in Linux, but Skype Call Recorder (SCR) is specifically designed for Skype. It is a free and open-source application with which you can record calls in MP3, Ogg Vorbis, or WAV format. It supports manual and automatic recording, which can be configured for specific callers.
- Go to the Skype Call Recorder website.
- Scroll to the download area on the main page. Packages are available for Ubuntu (x86 and x86_64), Debian, Asus Eee PC (running Xandros), RPM-based (x86 and x86_64), Arch Linux, a Gentoo ebuild and a source code tarball.
- Download and install the Skype Call Recorder package for your system. It should then appear in your application menu.
- Start Skype.
- Open your application launcher menu and start Skype Call Recorder. If you cannot find it, you can manually start it by running the command “skype-call-recorder“.
- Skype should pop up a window saying “A program “SkypeCallRecorder” is trying to connect to Skype”. Click “Yes“. If you want, you may also check “Remember this selection”.
- Right click on the new icon in your system tray area and click “Preferences“.
- Select whether you want it to automatically record every call, ask before recording, or not at all. From this tab you can also edit “per-caller recording”.
- Click the “File Names” tab and select the folder where you want SKR to save your files.
- Click the “File Format” tab and select the format you prefer. Ogg Vorbis is an open format and less lossy than MP3, but MP3 is more widely available for playback on portable devices. WAV will be uncompressed but will produce a large file if you have long calls. You can raise the MP3 bitrate to improve quality.
- When you are satisfied with your preferences, click “Close”.
Making a call
Assuming you have already used Skype, your audio mixer settings should be ready to record calls. If not, you need to make sure you have “mic” or microphone set to record and that “capture” is enabled. To test it, you can use a regular sound recorder to record your own voice.
- Start a Skype call the way you normally would. Click on a contact or enter a number.
- The call will ring as it normally does, but when the person on the other end answers, a window will appear asking you if you would like to continue recording. Select “Yes“, and your call will now be recorded until you hang up.
- After you end the call, check the folder you specified for your phone call file. You should be able to listen to it in whatever music player you prefer.
That is all it takes to record your Skype calls. Anytime you want to record calls, it will be configured and ready to go.
*Note: Please be advised that it is illegal in some countries to record calls without the consent of the other party. Even if it is not in your country, it is considered ethical by most people to inform the other person that you are recording them.
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