Add voicemail and a recording function to your Skype calls

Using Skype is great alternative to making traditional calls but it doesn’t have voicemail or recording facilities. Use a free program to get both

call record

Launch a web browser and visit the PrettyMay website by clicking here. When the page appears, click the Try button above the Basic Version column.

If the File Download Security Warning dialogue box appears, click Save and choose a location for the downloaded file.

Firefox users should select Save File to save the download to Firefox’s default download folder. Once the download finishes, double-click the PrettyMay-bas-setup.exe file and follow the prompts to install the program.

When complete, click Finish followed by No (to decline the offer to view special promotions).

Now double-click the PrettyMay Call Recorder icon on the Windows Desktop to launch the program.

Call Recorder will either launch or restart Skype, depending on whether it is already running. Sign into your Skype account and look for the yellow bar at the top of the Skype window.

This shows that Call Recorder wants access to Skype. Now click the Allow access button.

Before making or accepting an incoming call, ensure Call Recorder is running by looking for its icon in the Taskbar or Notification Area (if it’s not there, launch the program from the Start menu).

Now either make a call or accept an incoming one. Once connected, Call Recorder will display a prompt to record the chat. Click Yes to start recording and hold the conversation as normal (Call Recorder will record both sides of it).

The recording ends automatically when you hang up

or else, it can be paused or stopped manually without affecting the call by using the controls at the top of the Call Recorder window.

Call Recorder Basic will capture a maximum 15-minute recording, which should be sufficient for most conversations.

However, there is an easy workaround to this limitation: keep an eye on the length of the call in the Call Recorder window and, when it approaches 15 minutes, press the Stop button and immediately press Record to start a fresh recording.

The other person will be reminded that the call is being recorded, and it can proceed without interruption for another 15 minutes. Repeat as many times as necessary.

Recordings are displayed in the main Call Recorder window, with information about the caller, time and date of recording and the length of the recording displayed.

Select one and click the green Play button to listen to it; press the red Stop button to finish. Click the Memo button to attach an identifying note to the selected recording – this is displayed next to the playback controls.

Each recording is stored as an MP3 file, and can be accessed separately by right-clicking the recording in Call Recorder and choosing the ‘Open recording folder’ option.

The file can then be copied elsewhere or played in another program.

To change Call Recorder’s settings, click the small menu button near the top right of the program window and select Tools followed by Options, then choose Call Record.

From here you can get Call Recorder to automatically record calls instead of displaying a prompt or selectively disable call recording for incoming or outgoing calls.

To let the other person know the call is being recorded, tick ‘Send Message when you start call recording’ and type in a suitable text message.

If you don’t want your voice and your caller’s voice recorded as separate stereo channels, click to remove the tick from ‘Save in separate track’.

Call Recorder also functions as a voicemail recorder for Skype, as long as the computer is left switched on, connected to the internet and both programs are running.

Voicemail is enabled by default and set to automatically answer after 10 seconds


The caller will hear an audio message and receive a text notification. Each caller’s message will be automatically saved and is accessible from Call Recorder’s Voice Message tab.

From here it can be played, edited and accessed in the same way as recorded calls (see Step 4). Once played, unwanted messages can be removed by clicking the Delete button.

To configure the way voicemail works, open the Options dialogue box again (see Step 5) and choose Voice Messages.

To disable it, remove the tick from the Enable Voice Message box and click OK. Alternatively, you can tweak it using the other options.

Tick ‘Mute microphone while contact leaving the message’, for example, to disable the microphone and avoid potential embarrassment.

You can also limit the maximum length of the voicemail message, disable voicemail when your Skype status is online (remove the tick from ‘Enable answer as Online status’) or extend the number of seconds before Call Recorder answers the call.

Click the little green Play button next to the Greeting Voice file heading to hear the default audio voicemail message that is relayed to the caller.

This can be changed: click the red Record button, choose a suitable folder on the hard disk (such as Documents or Music) and type in a filename for the greeting.

Click Save followed by OK to record your own voicemail message using the mic.

Click the red Stop button when done and play the recording. If it’s OK, click Apply. Otherwise repeat the process to try again.

Call Recorder can also notify you when a voicemail message is received

either by text message (SMS) or email. Open the Options dialogue box and select SMS Notify to be notified by text.

You can choose to be notified immediately of new voicemail messages or set a specific time to avoid being disturbed at certain hours.

Tap in your mobile phone number, replacing the leading 0 with +44 (so 07999 123456 becomes +447999 123456, for example), then click Send Test to ensure it works – the message should arrive almost immediately.

Leave the four options ticked (to be told who left the voicemail and when it was recorded) and click Apply.

To get notifications by email, first click the Mail forwarding button. Now tick ‘Enable mail forwarding’. By default, Call Recorder will send an alert in the message body.

To have the actual voicemail message sent as an attachment, select the ‘Auto send mail with audio file attached when have new voicemail’ radio button.

Fill in the next three boxes with your email address and a suitable subject and message body.

Now click the Configuration button and fill in the details you require (see the box below for more help here) – tick ‘Server requires authorization’ before entering your username and password.

Click OK followed by ‘Send a test email’ to verify the settings are correct and working. Click OK to finish.

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