I finally decided to give in to Skype's nagging and upgrade my version to the latest. I think I had been running 5.5 before. It didn't work and now I am unable to install or use Skype at all.
When I tried to upgrade, I received an error which I am copying here from the Windows 7 Event Viewer:
Product: Skype™ 5.10 -- Error 1303. The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory: C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Skype. The installation cannot continue. Log on as administrator or contact your system administrator.
Things I have done or tried to the best of my knowledge and ability are:
I am logged in as the Administrator.
My installation of Windows 7 (Home Premium 64bit) has only one account, mine.
I have full access permissions to the directory in question.
My computer is virus free as determined via "AVG Free" as well as "TrendMicro HouseCall".
All available windows updates have been applied.
I have rebooted.
Skype has been uninstalled.
I deleted C:\ProgramData\Skype
I removed temp files from C:\Users\<LoginName>\AppData\Roaming\skype
I have attempted to install Skype via the generic "SkypeSetup.exe" from http://www.skype.com/
I have attempted to install from stand alone 'full' versions of Skype from OldVersion.com 126.96.36.199_SkypeSetup.exe as well as 188.8.131.52_SkypeSetupFull_6_.exe
So far I am stumped and feeling frusterated.
You still have problems with Permission properties on the Programs folder. System and Administrators group is missing.
Open this folder on your computer:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Skype\Phone\
You should see there the Skype application file (Skype.exe). Double click on this file. What happens then?
C:\Program Files (x86)\Skype\Phone\ does not exist on my computer because Skype is not installed.
I was able to resolve my issue by installing Skype 184.108.40.206 at the reccomendation of a friend. It, too, produced an error just like 5.5 and 5.10 did but instead of canceling the entire install process it merely informed me of the error and completed as normal. I would uninstall it to test if 5.10 works now (I suspect it would install) but I'd rather not take the chance of everything screwing up again.
Your observation about folder permissions seems to be correct. Curiously, I did not modify the permissions on C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\ myself but they now include full permissions for "Administrators" as well (but not "SYSTEM"). I wonder if perhaps Skype 5.3 did it some how and what caused them to be removed in the first place.
Same problem here.
The skype program folder is locked and cannot be deleted by admin or any user level. The installed failed and I cannot re-install.
I'm using Window 7.
I think it might be a bit of shame for Microsoft, that they didn't prompt user with administrator login popup, when loging from non-administrator account on WindowsXP. Many other IT companies having far less resources and budgets patched theirs software with this feature.
On Skype, we are getting more and more upgrades related to advertisement, but not sth people need first!