Before Skype was bought out by Microsoft, its interface remained relatively free of frills and had no advertising pushes that the modern client (as well as many of Microsoft’s other free applications) have. This is also one of the reasons many users opt to stay behind or revert to an older version, disabling Skype’s automatic updates to do so.
If you are still using an old version of Skype and are having compatibility issues and constant pestering for updates, this guide is for you.
If you are using the newer version of Skype and want to get rid of those annoying advertisements and make the interface cleaner to navigate … well, you’re in the right place too.
Fixing the contacts view
First, let’s fix the default contacts view.
Here is what we are going to change:
For this, all you need to do is click “View” on your taskbar and select “Compact Sidebar View.” Simple, easy, and saves a lot of screen real estate giving you more information on top of it.
From “Options,” proceed to “IM and SMS,” then to “IM Appearance.” There you will find a checkbox for “Compact Chat View” – select that and click “Save.”
Compact Chat View acts similarly to Compact Sidebar View, shrinking avatars and compressing all the text closer together. As a result, you’re able to see more of your conversations without the bubble graphics taking up quite as much, giving you around three more lines of text in a typical usage scenario.
It’s not old Skype by any means, but it will let you see more on your screen. Depending on the amount of chat bubbles, you can see up to eight more lines compared to the default view.
Now to deal with the advertisements: you’ll notice in my screenshots that there’s no egregious advertisement bar taking up a vertical tenth of the length of my screen, and that’s because I’ve disabled Skype’s advertisements and the advertisement placeholder that remains there after you remove them.
For the advertisements themselves, open your Start menu and type in “Internet Options” and hit Enter. After this, you’ll want to click the “Security” tab, select “Restricted Sites,” and click the Sites button that opens the list of websites you have blocked.
g.msn.com to your list of Restricted sites, then Close.
Advertisements will no longer appear in your Skype client, but a placeholder will remain at the top of your chat windows until you disable it.
To disable the placeholder, you’ll need to open “Windows Explorer” and paste the following into your address bar:
After that, you’ll have to click the folder with your Skype ID, right click “config.xml” and open it in Notepad.
Now, hit “Ctrl + F” and paste
AdvertPlaceholder into your search box.
Change the line
<AdvertPlaceholder>0</AdvertPlaceholder>, restart Skype and then you’ll be finished.
In the end, you’ll have a tighter, more compact interface without any advertisements taking up your screen or compromising your user experience.