Leopard Is Currently A Skype Breaker

So all has been just fine and dandy. I’ve been running Leopard and enjoying it for all it’s worth. But yesterday, after tightening up Leopard’s firewall, it dawned on me. I didn’t do any Skype-ing since I tightened things up. So I started Skype. All was fine. Then I logged out. So I wanted to check to see if someone was signed on and:

One bounce of the icon in the dock, t…t…t… No “two bounces”. It simply stopped bouncing after the first bounce. …and Skype never started. After I reinstalled it, it worked just fine. I thought, “That’s odd”, but then I was getting a bit pooped so I went to bed. So I exchange e-mails while I’m at work with Mike the Pirate and he mentions Skype’s breaking Leopard because of the Skype bundle changing itself after it’s been originally signed digitally; a feature in Leopard’s firewall I happen to like quite a bit, btw. Well, as soon as I get home, I hit the Skype Forums. Low and behold I came across this sobering piece by a user named/called Glenn Rempe (hat-tip to Glenn, of course). The news was pretty much as Mike said in fewer words, but the point was disturbingly the same. Here’s the condensed version for those of you synopsis-appreciating types:

OS X 10.5 now digitally signs all applications. The first time you run the app OS X will confirm that you want to run the app downloaded from the internet and will apply a digital signature to the app.

If the digital signature of the app changes (by even one byte) the app will no longer run as it no longer matches the signature originally approved. OS X will prevent it from running. If Skype is making ANY change inside the /Applications/Skype.app bundle when it runs it would cause this issue.

Yep. And clarifying things a bit more, Glenn adds this bit of info from the Ars Technica review:

See the following link for more information:


Specifically the text in the “code signing” paragraph:

“Code signing also means an end to the practice of applications modifying themselves (e.g., saving custom theme files inside the application bundle itself rather than in ~/Library/Application Support/MyApp or another user-specific location). This practice has always been discouraged by Apple, and now there’s another reason avoid it.”

As it stands, Skype simply will not work with Leopard’s firewall unless I reinstall it. No getting around it. The Skype developers, I’m sure, are hard at work on the problem, however, I’m stuck having to reinstall every time I want to use it. It’s a good thing the install process for Macs are so simple. Otherwise, it would be a REAL pain.

Let’s hope those developers get find a solution soon.

Time for me to got to bed.



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