How To Run Two Skype Accounts At Once

 Posted by on September 15, 2012  Tips
Sep 152012
 

It is easy to run two Skype accounts at once on the same computer. This is useful if two people use the same Windows logon account or if you need different Skype accounts for work and home use – and want both to be active at the same time i.e. ready to receive or make calls.

Having two Skype accounts means that you can keep your business/personal contacts separate and have a more professional username for work use – handy if your personal username is JennyLovesKittens or something ;-)

To run 2 Skype accounts at once you need to start a new instance of Skype – opening Skype with the usual shortcut twice won’t work, it will just display the current Skype window.

1. Navigate to the Skype program file – Skype.exe which is usually found in one of the following location (assuming Windows is installed in C: drive)

XP and Vista/W7 32bit  –  C:\Program Files\Skype\Phone\
Vista/W7 64bit  –  C:\Program Files (x86)\Skype\Phone\

[Note: if you have file extensions hidden the program file will just be called Skype – the file Type will be ‘Application’.]

2. Right click on the Skype.exe program file and select ‘Send To’ then ‘Desktop (create shortcut)’ as shown below:

skype 2users1

Creating a new desktop shortcut for Skype

This will place a new shortcut to Skype on your desktop – it will be called Skype.exe or Skype (if you had file extensions hidden).

[Note: if you already had a shortcut to Skype on your desktop, the new one may have a number after its name e.g. Skype (2) - to distinguish it from the original.]

3. Right click on this new Skype desktop shortcut and choose ‘Properties’ to open the Properties window.

4. In the Target field, add a single space then add /secondary

The new Target field should now be:

“C:\Program Files\Skype\Phone\Skype.exe” /secondary

 Or

“C:\Program Files (x86)\Skype\Phone\Skype.exe” /secondary

Press OK to finish – you have now changed the shortcut to run a second instance of Skype.

skype 2users2

Changing the Target for Skype

Using Two Skype Accounts At Once

Open your original version of Skype in the usual way.

Now double click your new desktop shortcut to open a second instance of Skype – enter your second set of username/password details to log in.

You should now have two Skype accounts running simultaneously – obviously if you are in a call on one account you may wish to change the Skype Online Status of your other account to ‘away’ or ‘busy’ to prevent new calls interrupting you.

Mac Users

The above /secondary command is only for Windows.

I haven’t tested it myself but Skype forums suggest that the following method should work to run two Skype accounts at once on Mac:

1. Open Skype in the usual way

2. Open Terminal

3. In the Terminal window type:

sudo /Applications/Skype.app/Contents/MacOS/Skype

[Note the single space between sudo and /Applications]

4. Enter your user account (logon) password when asked

A second instance of Skype should open after a few seconds. You should be able to now close the Terminal window – if you find that Skype closes too, in future you will have to keep Terminal open (minimize it) as long as you need to run two Skype accounts at once.

This isn’t as neat a solution as for Windows and, unfortunately, as Microsoft now own Skype I wouldn’t expect that further development for Macs is top of their agenda…

Conclusion

Running two Skype accounts at once is easy to set up in Windows but more laborious on a Mac.

It can save a lot of time compared to having to log out of Skype and log back in as a different user – and because both Skype accounts are active they can both ‘listen’ for incoming calls at the same time.

  3 Responses to “How To Run Two Skype Accounts At Once”

  1. great sharing, thanks

  2. I have a Skype /secondary shortcut in my Start menu. Every once & so often, it just disappears, As if the latest Windows update just removes it. It seems it is not part of MS policy to encourage you to have more than one Skype account on the same IP (that would mess up all the IP-related mined data, wouldn’t it?).

    • @Newrone – odd, perhaps each Skype update overwrites your Start menu shortcut with a new standard Skype one… I’ve only used it as a secondary desktop shortcut – maybe put it on desktop so it doesn’t get overwritten/deleted in future or rename it to ‘Second Skype’ or something?