Run Multiple Instances of Skype 4.0

I have different professorial groups that I stay in touch with online. The old method of running multiple Skype instances in Ubuntu worked great with older versions of Ubuntu using GNOME, but times changes and so do our desktops. In Ubuntu with Unity it is still possible to run multiple Skypes.


You'll need to install Skype 4.x if you havent done so yet. Just head over to and download the linux version and install. The newest version is already in the Ubuntu Software Center as well.

Now you need to create new copies of the installed Skype. Open up a terminal and run the following commands:

cp -r ~/.Skype ~/.Skype.first
cp -r ~/.Skype ~/.Skype.second

So now you have two installed instances of Skype. That was pretty dang easy, right? We now need to link up to those, so lets create a launcher for the two different Skypes.

This might be redundant, but lets make sure you have this installed first. Install gnome-panel package using this terminal command....

sudo apt-get install --no-install-recommends gnome-panel

Now make a folder off of your home directory to put the launchers in. I made one called "myapps", but you can name yours whatever you want. Open a terminal and type this:

mkdir myapps

Now run this command:

gnome-desktop-item-edit ~/myapps/ --create-new

A new launcher box will pop up. Name it what you want (Skype1) and pick an icon what you want (download use the one down below if you'd like). Now type in the command field the following command:

skype --dbpath=~/.Skype.first

And lets do this again for the second Skype launcher (name it Skype2 or whatever)...

gnome-desktop-item-edit ~/myapps/ --create-new

and also...

skype --dbpath=~/.Skype.second

So your launchers are both made and can be found in your new /home/myapps directory. Open up your file browser and go there and you should see the two new instances of Skype. Click the first one and after it opens, pin it or lock it to your Ubuntu Unity launcher. Do the same with the second and lock it to the launcher.

THATS IT. Whew! Now you can run multiple instances of Skype in the newest versions of Ubuntu!


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  1. chachacha11:20 AM

    i did it under linux mint. just add to panel from the menu 2 times skype icons. 1. go skype icon 1 you created on the panel and right mouse click to open that you may edit and paste skype --dbpath=~/.Skype.first
    2. go skype icon 2 you created on the panel and right mouse click to open that you may edit and paste skype --dbpath=~/.Skype.second

  2. Benfatto6:14 AM

    Worked like a charm on my 10.04 lucid lynx. Thanks a lot!

  3. Sam T9:49 AM

    your article is also copied here:

  4. NetSpeed4:41 PM


  5. Rodislav Moldovan12:02 AM


  6. thanks, friend!9:34 AM

    Oh man - this is just what I needed!


  7. Tahseen12:10 AM

    Loving it <3 Thank you so much!!!!!

  8. Yordan2:22 AM

    Thanks a lot. This was a great problem for me after upgrading to Skype 4

  9. kat cc2:58 PM

    I have some trouble doing this procedure, Never appears a new launcher window, somebody can help me please?