Running applications from a USB stick is handy for those of us who like to carry their software with them at all times and work on different machines. PortableSkype is a mobile version of the popular VOIP tool which when combined with call recording software Pamela and audio editor Audacity Portable allows potential podcasters to record and edit Skype conversations wherever and whenever they want.
To get started, download the PortableSkype zip file to your USB stick, extract the contents by right-clicking and selecting Extract All, then follow the on-screen instructions. Download the latest version of Skype and copy the Skype.exe file which you should find here on your hard disk C:\Program Files\Skype\Phone\Skype.exe. Copy this file to the Skype folder on your USB device
Launch the application by double clicking the PortableSkype.exe file on your USB device and fill in your existing details or sign up as a new user.
To record calls, download Pamela to your USB stick and follow the installation instructions. When you come to the Choose Install Location window, click the Browse button, go to My Computer, select your USB drive and click OK. Continue with the installation wizard. On the Systems Option page, uncheck Automatically start up on Windows Startup and Create Desktop icon.
On your USB stick, go to the Pamela folder, launch the Pamela.exe file and give Skype authorization to use Pamela.
This will pop up bottom right of your screen.
You will see this notification message on the main Skype window.
This dialogue box will then appear and you select Allow this program to use Skype.
Likewise in Skype select the same microphone and sound card.
In Pamela, click on the General tab and tick the Enable call recording box. Click on the Setup Call Recording folder and select the PortableSkype folder on your USB stick. Click OK, Apply and OK. That way all the recordings you make will stay on your USB drive.
When you are ready to record, select the person you wish to speak to (in this case Esther Mercier) and click the green call icon. You will see the message below. Click Yes. (With the free version of Pamela, you will then be able to record for the next 15 minutes).
When you press the red button to hang up, you will see this dialogue box. To listen to the recording, select it and press the green play button.
Right click the recording and select Open call recording folder.
This will then appear.
If you want to edit the mp3 file, install Audacity Portable on to your USB stick using the same method as with Pamela and drop it on to the main interface.
A final point. In the free version of Pamela both speakers are recorded as one track whereas if you upgrade to Professional, they will be in separate channels which makes it much easier to edit afterwards, but that's the price you pay. Secondly, make sure you always close Skype, Pamela or Audacity before removing your USB stick. An easy mistake to make.
Here is the recording we made tonight which despite putting it through The Levelator, Esther's voice is quite quiet. More experimentation needed, I think!