Belgacom loves Skype in Belgium?

Will my Skype still work?
Belgacom is the former monopolist State owned telephone company in Belgium, and they still have a big part of the market, especially of ADSL internet connections. And although the logos of Skype and Belgacom have almost the same color, I don't think they love each other.

I got a very disturbing e-mail this morning. I translate it from Dutch:

"Dear customer,

To provide your internet connection with the most optimal protection against viruses, hackers, etc. Belgacom takes continuously a lot of protective actions. Therefore, from Monday November 30 on, we implement a major protection intervention on our network: TCP-ports 80, 23 and 443 will be closed for all external traffic towards your network (incoming sessions …)

If you use your internet connection simply to surf or to mail, then you will not notice anything and you don’t need to continue to read.

Only some very specific applications (like web servers) will not work anymore."

And then they give instruction how to unblock the ports!
(The red marked text above is their "marking").

So, will my Skype still work? Technical people know that Skype uses the ports 80 and 443. I am curious, and am awaiting Monday 30 to see what happens. I’ll give feedback for sure.

And of course, there is a workaround, but …

[Feedback November 30: it still works!]


50 million or half a billion?

Read the Skype blog here!

Fantastic! As usual they claim they have huge amounts of users, in this case they say: (Skype) already connects over half a billion people around the globe through voice and video conversations that span oceans and time zones.

Why do they exaggerate? Why do they forget to say that it is “usernames” they should say, not users!

  • I have registered 26 usernames, and I use usually only one. Am I “26 users”?
  • My father died last year (unafortunately). Is he still a user? Perhaps he is still alive?
  • My brother lost his password and made a new account. Is he two (2) users?
  • Some spammers register new usernames every day. Are it always different users?
  • And a friend tried Skype, but doesn't use it anymore. But he is still a user, according to Skype!
No, no, no, Skype probably has only some 50 million regular users, not half a billion. How do you otherwise explain that there are ONLY 20 million users online at the same moment at some moments of a day?

When will Skype stop with those lies?


20 million users online

Late, yes I know, I am late to report it (I was abroad and didn’t use internet).
I was warned by Dick Schiferli from Pamela that Skype reached 20 million concurrent users online for the first time last Monday, and he published it on his PamNews.com blog. This is the 6th time this year that Skype adds a million. Concerning this metric, this is a fantastic year for Skype.And while I mentioned Pamela … some readers are perhaps wondering what Pamela is? Well, it is really “THE Swiss Knife” for Skype: answering machine, video and voice recording, birthday announcements, mood editor, automatic chat answers (when you are away for instance), etc. Really fantastic: see www.pamela.biz.

And you want to fax with Skype? Impossible you think? Click on the next icon :-)


Skype Tip No Worm

I got a strange warning message this morning after starting my computer:According to the Skype Forum, this isn't a worm or other intrusion but a Skype feature related to Firefox or Explorer, see Skypenames.exe: what is that?.
It could explain why my Firefox experienced some serious slowdowns the last weeks. But anyway, nothing to be really worried about. But, why is it called a "useful tip" while i disabled all my "notifications" in my Skype Options?

What I am worried about (for Skype): how many people will get scared and will uninstall Skype?