Skype breaks if auto-update is unattended due to UAC dialog?


starbuck

Active member
Local time
12:32 AM
Posts
40
OS
Windows 11 Pro 23H2
This issue has been happening for several years now to me and on every single Windows 10/11 computer in our business. I don’t run any kind of special group policies or configurations. These are all just a group of basic/vanilla Windows 10 / 11 Pro installations with very basic software sets (all using MS Defender, no 3rd party AV or firewall, Office Suite, Thunderbird, Slack, Dropbox and that’s about it).

We all use skype, but the big problem I have is that when Skype does it’s silent auto updating, the next time the computer reboots or skype is restarted, Skype attempts to apply the update and the UAC dialog appears. If the user is not present and does not approve the UAC dialog, it will disappear automatically and from that point forward Skype will not launch or run. The only solution is to locate the Skype-Setup.exe file that was downloaded automatically to the User’s AppData folder and manually run it.

This happens a lot as most of my staff will come into work, start their computer and walk away to make a cup of coffee and have a morning chat. By the time they get back Skype is no longe working and they don’t even realize that they can’t receive Skype calls (no one has a desk phone so all inter-employee voice comms are done by Skype).

How do I fix this problem once and for all. Most of my staff simply cannot remember this workaround. Nor should they even have to do it. Every other app we run has no problem applying updates (e.g. Slack) or breaking during the update process.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro 23H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom Build
    CPU
    Intel Core i5-12600K
    Motherboard
    ASUS TUF GAMING Z690-PLUS WIFI D4
    Memory
    DDR4-3603 / PC4-28800 DDR4 SDRAM UDIMM
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA RTX 2060 Super XC Ultra Gaming (08G-P4-3163)
    Hard Drives
    Samsung SSD 980 EVO 1TB
    PSU
    Corsair 750W Gold
    Case
    Corsair
    Cooling
    Corsair
    Internet Speed
    Fibre 1gbps
A common Reddit hack is having a GPO policy or script run:
1. Terminate Skype
2. Remove "%AppData%\users\MyName\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Skype\Skype-Setup.exe"
3. Replace it with folder named "Skype-Setup.exe". Since a file can never overwrite a folder, Skype can't auto-update itself.

Now you can copy the real installer file and deploy it, on your own time.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 7
Interesting hack. I guess this is a good indicator that many people experience this issue. Why doesn’t Microsoft fix this in some other way? They must know it’s a problem? We’ve been using Skype for 10 years+ (before Microsoft bought it). Previously it never had this problem, but it emerged sometime in the last few years and has been constant source of annoyance. I left it alone because I figured the problem must be pervasive and MS would eventually fix it. Wonder why they have never even bothered?
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro 23H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom Build
    CPU
    Intel Core i5-12600K
    Motherboard
    ASUS TUF GAMING Z690-PLUS WIFI D4
    Memory
    DDR4-3603 / PC4-28800 DDR4 SDRAM UDIMM
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA RTX 2060 Super XC Ultra Gaming (08G-P4-3163)
    Hard Drives
    Samsung SSD 980 EVO 1TB
    PSU
    Corsair 750W Gold
    Case
    Corsair
    Cooling
    Corsair
    Internet Speed
    Fibre 1gbps
I think the real question, is why the hell does Skype need to update so often? I often re-download installers for software to check if anything's changed, and Skype updates at least every month.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 7

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