back to article Chat messages in Skype for Windows are bang out of order – so here's how to 'fix' it for now

If you're using Skype on a Windows desktop and your messages are appearing out of order, there's a solution: downgrade to an earlier version. You're not alone in seeing some newer chat messages appear above older ones, which makes following conversations a little tricky: people have been complaining about it over the Christmas …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Skype sponsored content

    Another reason to stick with an old version is the recent bloat of sponsored video emoticons.

    When only a recent Hollywood movie clip can truly express how you're feeling.

    1. Tim 11

      Re: Skype sponsored content

      agree - I think skype usability peaked around version 5 (in the golden days of windows 7 and server 2008, before everything MS did was shit)

      1. Mark 85 Silver badge

        Re: Skype sponsored content

        Before? There was a time when it wasn't shit? I must have missed it.

      2. BongoJoe

        Re: Skype sponsored content

        I am happy on version 6.2 and I don't get adverts, wasted screen and furthermore my messages appear as, well, messages and not bubbly clouds as per the bloody Beano and later versions of Shyte.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ah well...

    "That's what I thought, Mrs Cake!"

    "But isn't that just some people forgetting to switch off their precognition?"

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Alternatively if you're using skype for professional usage and feel like your current system is working too well you can switch to 'Not Skype for business'. Your 'Not Skype' conversations won't appear in "Not Skype" unless the moon is shining in the right direction. It's OK though because they'll instead appear 20 times in Outlook which also isn't Skype.

    1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      As an added bonus, have both Skype installed (because you've used it for your home-office phone for years) and Not Skype for Business (because your IT department decided it's the greatest thing since sliced bread). Then your Outlook contacts will no longer appear in Skype, because why would you want them available in all your VoIP clients?

      Even the old Registry "set my PIM default" hack doesn't fix this one. Not Skype for Business (which manages to be even worse than current Skype, for pretty much any function) simply prevents Skype from seeing the Outlook contacts.

      Of course, if Outlook stored its data using some structured-text file format, perhaps using one of the various established formats like vCard, this wouldn't be a problem. And then it would be possible to work around Outlook's astoundingly slow and broken search functionality, too, using things like grep. But no, that would have been sensible.

  4. bazza Silver badge

    How?

    What on earth have they done in their source code? To take existing code, which presumably does nothing more than deliver messages in the order they were sent, and change it so that instead it stores them up and displays them out of order sounds like extra work.

    Surely at some point someone should have thought, "Why is there more code than there used to be?".

    1. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

      Re: How?

      Tradition. At least in Redmond: fail at developing something that is both useful and working. Buy a software (usually by buying the whole company) that has succeeded in developing said bit of software. Market bought software as MSwhatever. Then mess it up.

    2. Doctor_Wibble

      Re: How?

      > What on earth have they done in their source code?

      My first guess was the messages are sorted by date and someone buggered about with the date display/localisation to make it 'human readable' instead of a sane reverse (i.e. yyyymmddhhss) format and assuming it would be automagically sorted the same way as before.

      Just doing that one tweak in an attempt at prettiness without checking why it had always been done a particular way?

      Probably answered in that skype forum thread somewhere though I doubt I'll finish reading that in time to correct any horrendous blunders I typed here.

      edit: other guess is message ID numbers being sorted on the wrong digit. etc...

      1. Doctor_Wibble
        FAIL

        Re: How?

        > i.e. yyyymmddhhss

        Bollocks, I forgot the minutes! Again! So the last meeting never happened...

        To coin a phrase, "I put on my Fail Badge and Dunce's Hat".

    3. desht

      Re: How?

      My theory is that they let someone loose on the code who discovered multi threading yesterday and thinks it's the coolest thing ever (and that synchronisation is something that other people need to deal with).

    4. Tim 11

      Re: How?

      The problem isn't quite as simple as that.

      In Skype there is no central server through which all messages pass, so no authoritative source of "system time". Individual users' devices may vary in their current time setting by several minutes. Also the order in which messages are received is not necessarily the order in which they were sent because the network is slow and unreliable.

      However, I'm not defending the fact that it used to get it "right" (or at least better than it does now) so there has undoubtedly been a regression of functionality.

  5. Your alien overlord - fear me

    "This update is currently undergoing verification and quality tests before we can share it with you" unlike previous versions where we let you do the quality tests for us. At no cost to us. Cheers suckers.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Chat with microsoft software shit

    Gave up on skype when it started to refuse my microsoft logon and password

    Even when i was logged on to mr Suckie email and then tried to skype was refused for invalid password

    for Wuck sake i was allready logged in

    uninstalled the crap and don't intend to try INSTALLING IT EVER AGAIN

    NEVER HAD THE PROBLEMS WITH MSN BUT I GUESS THEY COULD NOT MAKE A BUCK FROM msm

    BRING BACK MSM MESSENGER FOR WUCK SAKE

  7. W Donelson

    In the long tradition of Microsoft, each release of Skype is worse

    All but one of my clients has given up on it.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: In the long tradition of Microsoft, each release of Skype is worse

      Same. I used to heavily enjoy MSN Messenger, and looking back part of that enjoyment came from the non-intrusive approach. Yes,there were advertisements and sometimes they were a wee bit annoying but nothing too intrusive as with Skype.

      But the main problem for me was Skype itself. The moment I went to my Skype profile I saw half the page filled with advertisements. No, not 'spam' but Skype spam: "How to go premium" and "Why you should go Premium" (or something alike; I don't quite try to remember). I can understand that a free service wants me to pay, but I do not appreciate this kind of advertisement in something as serious as my settings page.

      Because what's next? "Go Premium and then you can use these settings! ===>"? I went 'Premium' alright: purged Skype from my computer and in the rare event I do need it I'll simply use the web client on Outlook.com.

  8. s. pam
    Pirate

    Mac version is a 3-D cluster...

    The last 3 Mac updates are utter butt roll leftovers of non-working code. It's gotten so bad we've had to keep a spare DMG around our home to clean up when a new turd arrives.

    How could someone so fuck up a working product..??

  9. James Loughner
    Linux

    Linux

    The Linux version still works ok, But you do have to install some 32 bit libraries since Skype is still 32 bit only. And they have not released a new version for a long time. Thank goodness

    1. Teiwaz Silver badge

      Re: Linux

      Their new Beta web client will install in Linux in Firefox, but only does messages, not audio or video.

      Doesn't tell you before it asks to be installed that it's next to useless though. Not much of a beta if it plays it safe (I'd not mind a few bugs),

      The native 32 bit client has a bad habit of forgetting your login if you close it, like it resents being snubbed...

      Still trying to wean relatives who use it to something else...for my sanity more than anything else, they're happy with it on ipads etc.It's just a pain in the ass to me...

  10. ZenCoder

    Alternatively you can also just not use skype.

    There is this radical idea call "testing" ... I read about it in software engineering classes when I was getting my degrees. The deal is before you release your software you test it on various platforms and OS'es and what not and only when it works properly do you release it.

    Because if the latest isn't your greatest it means that you really don't care about me as a customer. You are not even PRETENDING to care about me as a customer.

    I'm not going to be your alpha tester or beta tester, I'll just conclude SKYPE equals crap and future releases will be crap and I should look elsewhere.

    1. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: Alternatively you can also just not use skype.

      Since this is brought to you by the same folks doing Windows 10 maybe it's time the industry did some serious looking elsewhere?

  11. kryptylomese

    Microsoft cannot write good software and yet people still defend them?

    I am done with their shit!

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Skype - the new Flash??

    Rarely use Skpye, but have it installed on an Android tablet and iPhone.

    However, I notice that Skype keeps wanting to download updates almost every time I switch the devices on, more often then Flash.*

    * Only have Flash installed on work's PC - and not by choice either.

  13. Camilla Smythe

    Shirley...

    They are making it compatible with modern usenet/e-mail practices. ISTR there used to be a raging argument about Top or Bottom Posting that the 'lazy arse' fraternity won by not scrolling down to the bottom of a message 'cause they did not know how to or when they attempted to they forgot what they were going to say when they got there then it all fell over when usenet/e-mail was renamed Google Groups/Google Mail and China Drop Shop took over. Looks like Microsoft are adopting the new paradigm for Skype.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    If you're using Skype on a Windows desktop and your messages are appearing out of order, there's a solution: stop.

    1. Teiwaz Silver badge

      Stop Using Skype

      Unfortunately sometimes it's the Facebook/wahtsapp/viber (whatever is currently popular 'social tool').

      If you have customers/clients or friends/relatives who insist on using it, you often have little choice. They act as a lock-in above and beyond merely being locked into using whatever half-assed program you're locked into using to use the half-assed 'service'.

      Which all came about because the phone operators thought they had a lock-in on calls so thought they could gouge you to their hearts content and didn't need to plan for the very obvious evolution of video calls (or enough in cross operator compatibility) and could go on gouging without need to invest in innovation.

      1. Jeffrey Nonken

        Re: Stop Using Skype

        I only use it because my sister uses it to set up video chats between me and our aging father. But the bloody thing tries SO HARD to be my bestest buddy, hiding itself when I tell it to shut down, pushing ads in my face, and letting strangers call while I'm trying to play online videogames. Commercial calls that just keep ringing forever.

        Lovely spam, wonderful spam!

        1. LDS Silver badge

          Re: Stop Using Skype

          Have you ever tried to allow calls/messages from "contacts only"? It's in the privacy settings...

  15. markl66

    no excuse

    How can there be any excuse for such a bug, it is one of the most basic requirements for a messaging system and it used to work. Someone has re-factored the code no doubt but without proper regression testing. How this company still exists is unbelievable

  16. CAPS LOCK Silver badge

    Alternatives that work please...

    ... so not Firefox Hello...

    1. Jess

      Re: Alternatives that work please...

      https://www.getonsip.com/webrtc/ (requires a modern browser for their web client)

      Does audio to regular sip clients (on other providers too).

      Allows the use of your account from sip softphones and hardware (the instructions for the paid for Bria also work for the free X-lite).

      Provides a url so that you can be called without the other end having to sign up. (This will also work to a softphone etc, but audio only)

  17. phil dude
    Linux

    jitsi

    FOSS, free, secure, and very good.

    https://jitsi.org/

    Everything that Skype isn't.

    P.

  18. Mike Shepherd
    Meh

    This update is currently undergoing verification and quality tests...

    ...when we figure out what those things are.

  19. Spaceman Spiff

    I have always thought Microsoft (since the early 1980's) was bass-ackward in their approach to tech. Gotta wonder what they will screw up next. Most entertaining! I also love those bogus phone calls from "Microsoft Tech Support Services" that inform me that our computers are infected with viruses and they will help us clean them up. We have exactly ZERO Windows computers in our home. My wife is an iUser only, and I Linux! :-) I especially love to keep these pinheads on the phone for as long as possible, stringing them along. Very entertaining, for sure!

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