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Archive for April, 2009

Problem installing Skype on Vista?

Getting error messages while installing Skype on Vista? A quick search on google shows there are many challenges to installing Skype on a Vista machine.

I tried installing Skype sometime ago on my 64-bit Vista OS machine, and it refused to install properly.  I since learnt that Skype works only with 32-bit Vista OS machines, and thus was able to install it on my 32-bit system without any problem.  This was in November 2008.  It was rather frustrating for me, as the download page promised that the installation would work for 64-bit Vista, but it didn’t.

Recently, a tweep was having trouble installing Skype on Vista. The error message encountered was “can’t create installation file…” I immediately responded thinking it was the 64-bit os problem again, and this time I was wrong.  It turns out Skype has released several new versions since last November, 5 to be exact.  The latest version at this time being

As he had tried downloading and installing the latest version of Skype onto 2 vista machines to no avail, I suggested that he tried installing an older version instead.  I suspect  that Skype’s updates may have broken something which has somehow rendered the later version uninstallable on Vista.  I’m using (released in Nov 2008) and it works fine for me.

He tried my suggestion, downloaded and installed the older version successfully.  So the Skype+Vista combi works for him now. 🙂  I’m very pleased  for him, and thought I’d put this note down as a reference for anyone else out there who may be experiencing the same challenge.

If you have a similar problem, have tried other solutions in vain and would like to try installing an older version, you can download them at this  This web site has old versions of applications which can come in handy sometimes. Yup, newer is not always better.

I’ve notified Skype of this issue, so this will hopefully be an interim solution for those of you having this problem.


Retrieving Emails from your Hotmail account using Email Clients and iPhone

Having searched in vain for this information since last year, I’ve decided to migrate to gmail. The frustration I faced was mainly with the fact that I can retrieve my emails from gmail using Windows mail and outlook, but I couldn’t do the same with hotmail. In December, I finally got an iPhone, and faced the same issues with access once again, with hotmail.

It seems this information is rather hard to find, and brings to mind Microsoft’s lack of attention towards usability. The help facility in hotmail is tucked away in a far corner (a tiny, round, blue icon; under the “sign out” link, next to the “Options” link). I thought it was the help facility for Settings! Silly me… and yes, I digress.

Setting up your email client

If you are looking for instructions to setting up your mail client to retrieve emails from your hotmail account, these listed in the hotmail help are for Outlook Express:

  1. In Outlook Express, click the Tools menu, and then click Accounts.
  2. Click Add, and then click Mail.
  3. Type your name, and then click Next.
  4. Type your full Windows Live Hotmail e-mail address, and then click Next.
  5. Enter the following information, and then click Next:
    • In the My incoming mail server is a box, click POP3.
    • In the Incoming mail (POP3, IMAP, or HTTP) server box, type
    • In the Outgoing mail (SMTP) server box, type
  6. Type the account name and the password for your Windows Live Hotmail account. Clear the Remember password check box unless you’re the only person with access to the computer. Make sure that the Log on using Secure Password Authentication (SPA) check box isn’t selected.
  7. Click Next, and then click Finish.
  8. In the Internet Accounts window, click the Mail tab, click the Windows Live Hotmail account that you added, and then click Properties.
  9. Click the Advanced tab, and under Server Port Numbers, enter the following information, and then click OK:
    • In the Incoming mail (POP3) box, type 995.
    • In the Outgoing mail (SMTP) box, type 25.
    • Under both Outgoing mail (SMTP) and Incoming mail (POP3), select the This server requires a secure connection (SSL) check box.
    • Click Close.

The above instructions will vary slightly if you are using another email client, but most of the parameters you need are there, so you should be able to get your hotmail emails in no time.

Finding the above instructions via hotmail

If for some reason the above doesn’t work, perhaps the other help information listed in hotmail can help you.  Here are the steps to finding the instructions you need:

  1. Look for a small blue round icon with “?” symbol. You will find it on the top right hand corner of the hotmail post-login screen, under the “sign out” link, next to the “Options” link.  Click on that icon and a popup window will appear.
  2. Select “Table of contents” in the left panel.
  3. Click on “Setup a Windows Live Hotmail Account”.
  4. If you are setting up for outlook express, follow the instructions by selecting “Add your e-mail account to Microsoft Outlook Express”
  5. If you need the pop3 and smtp settings for any other email client, select “POP3 settings”

Setup for iPhone users

The setup for iphone is very straightforward, and we wouldn’t expect anything less, would we? 😉

  1. Select Settings
  2. Choose Mail, Contacts, Calendar
  3. Under Accounts, choose “Add Account”
  4. Select “Other”
  5. Provide your name, email address and password; select “Save” when done.
  6. Your iPhone will verify the account information and once that is done, you can start retrieving your hotmail emails via your iPhone.

I had given up the notion of getting my hotmails on my iPhone and using an email client instead of using the browser, but thanks to my twitter friend @echo6ix who shared this information with me, there is still hope for hotmail in my books.

I hope you find this helpful.  Good luck and let me know how you get on. 🙂