I downloaded and installed Skype, but by clicking the icon it just does not start.

What should I do?

  • 2
    Hello and welcome to Ask Ubuntu. Take a look in the FAQ , try also to give additional information. what version of Ubuntu are you using? – Alvar Feb 25 '12 at 19:02

It's always good to open a terminal and issue the command from there. Failure will at the least reports some output.

Open a terminal and issue the command:


  • 1
    skype didn't start from Ubuntu Software -> Launch, but it perfectly started from terminal – renadeen Mar 10 '18 at 11:21
  • what is the command to open skype from the terminal? – Karim Samir Apr 28 '18 at 11:21
  • I installed Skype from an rpm with yum on CentOS 7.2 and it wouldn't start. The skypeforlinux command shows no terminal output. – Qwertie Nov 2 '18 at 0:01

Just to be sure. You downloaded and installed Skype through Ubuntu's Software Center.

I recommend doing it this way. But in all cases, Skype has a particular issue that if you start it 2 or more times it gets stuck if you did not close it properly.

Do the following in a terminal:

sudo killall skype or sudo killall -9 skype. That should force skype to close even if you do not see it. It kills the Skype process.

After which I also recommend putting the Skype icon in the Launcher. This way, if you double click on it, it will not open twice. It will just open normally and the second click will make it get focus.


I've had the same problem. Followed the answer here https://askubuntu.com/a/322347/115308, and it is working now.


Make sure that you install 32-bit / 64-bit Skype on respective hardware. Installing from the Ubuntu Software Center automatically decides what version is appropriate.


When starting Skype, a native 32 bit binary, in a 64 bit environment you might run into the following error and Skype refuses to start:

skype: error while loading shared libraries: libGL.so.1: cannot open shared object file: No such file or directory

So far I only had this problem on 64 bit. The following solution solved it:

# ln -s /usr/lib/mesa-diverted/i386-linux-gnu/libGL.so.1 /usr/lib/i386-linux-gnu/

Source : https://wiki.debian.org/skype#Problems_starting_Skype


The fact that the problem was posted in such a general form makes it applicable to recent developments.

In Kubuntu 18.04 downloading and installing the deb file I can only start it once, log in, without any way of accessing contacts etc. Closing and restarting it appeared in tray but would not start. Running skype in terminal it says uninstalled, recommends to use

sudo snap install skype

Doing that (after uninstalling skypeforlinux) it asks me to use

sudo snap install skype --classic

which successfully installs a working Skype.

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