Microsoft’s inattentive approach to Linux has continued unabated, with reports indicating that the signing key for its Debian Skype repository has expired.
Last week, we noticed the return of the dreaded 404 to enthusiasts eager to do the
apt-get fandango to grab some of Microsoft’s merchandise from
packages.microsoft.com, but things seem to be back to normal lately.
Unfortunately, for Skype, “normal” seems to be on the wrong side of Bork for some Linux users because an expired signature left customers wondering how to get the chat platform safely through
“This isn’t the first time Microsoft has forgotten to renew an apt key,” one user muttered, “I guess it won’t be the last time either.”
Ouch. Far be it from suggesting that we may be seeing an attempt by Microsoft to steer users towards Teams on Linux rather than that old Skype thing. Not satisfied with the removal of beloved features, the company did not bother to renew the GPG key.
The key is important because it is used by the package manager to separate legitimate code from what might be a little uncertain.
@MicrosoftHelps Dear Microsoft. Are you planning to continue with Skype for Linux? The GPG key for the apt repository expired on 2021-06-21
– Frank Disseldorp (@ c64frank) June 22, 2021
A good question, Frank, and one that The register put to Microsoft. It’ll be interesting to see who wins: the company’s reborn fervor for all things penguin versus the occasional disinterest it has shown on Skype now that Teams is truly the flavor of the month.
At the time of writing, the issue had not yet disrupted the Skype UserVoice forum (cryptocurrency requests and complaints about the UI update still dominate).
“Contacting Microsoft to tell them is obviously unnecessary,” said Register now reader Tom, who steered us to the question. He was right. Frank’s complaint was answered: “We really appreciate your interest in Skype. Basic [sic] to our knowledge, you wanted to know if Skype plans to continue with Skype for Linux. “
You can feel the dead hand of a bot at work. Although, hopefully not via Skype for Linux. ®