Remove skype ads and fix ieframe.dll error

After skype started to throw the following exception when run, it was obvious ads were the cause of the problem. This is just absurd – introduce a program crashing ad functonality – shame on you, Microsoft!

The error message indicates, that ieframe.dll is being used, so it was obvious that Internet Explorer is being called, from within Skype. So, to block skype from displaying anything inside an IE iframe it is necessary to block internet access from IE itself.
If you use IE browser on a daily basis, this method is not suitable for you.

So, to stop IE from working (and displaying Skype ads):

  • Go to Control Panel -> internet Options -> Connections -> LAN Settings
  • Untick “Automatically detect settings” box, tick “Use a proxy server for your LAN” and add a fake IP, like
  • To (temporarily) allow access for IE – untick the “Use a proxy server for your LAN” box.

    NB! Google Chrome and newer Opera browsers use the same Internet Connection settings as IE. To make them work, just add –proxy-server command line switch to its chortcut:

    Example (works as well on Opera 15+ ):

    Enjoy your ad free Skype! (until Microsoft changes the way ads are displayed)

    Last Ad Free Skype version

    If you want to use latest Skype version just add following line to hosts file (C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc):


    Today I received a Skype update that started to show advertisements in chat windows.
    This was unacceptable for me, so I decided to downgrade Skype to latest ad-free version, which seems to be

    You can download old Skype version without ads from here:


    To prevent Skype from updating automatically go to:

    Tools -> Options… -> Advanced -> Automatic updates and click “Turn off automatic updates’.

    Xperia Arc S distorted sound – earpiece replacement

    After a year of active usage of my SE Xperia Arc S, I have faced a problem when sound, coming from a small front speaker became distorted. All voices had a buzzing effect as well.
    Fortunately you can easily find an earpiece replacement for 2-3$ on ebay.
    I have even bought a set with tools, to disassemble my phone. (Search for “Replacement Ear Earpiece Speaker+Tool for Sony Ericsson X12 Xperia Arc S” )

    The replacement procedure in pretty simple, you just have to be careful and have a bit of patience. No soldering is required for the replacement.

    Here is a procedure to replace the front speaker:

    1. Detach the back cover, remove Battery, SIM and memory cards.

    2. Unscrew 4 torx (star) shaped and 2 cross shaped bolts. Open HDMi cover.

    SE Arc S back

    3. Separate the covering panel. This can be easily done using your nail, or special tool starting from one of the phone corners.
    Move the tool in clockwise direction and make a small gap between the screen and silver panel on the side of the phone.
    Then increase the gap gradually until the panel comes off. Be gentle doing this as the side frame is pretty thin .

    SE Arc S back
    SE Arc S back

    4. With the panel removed, locate the camera and gently bend it to the left, it should come off very easily.

    SE Arc S back

    5. On the right of the camera hides the earpiece we are going to replace. Move the small contact plate to the left, and pull it up gently. This will uncover the front speaker.

    SE Arc S back

    6. Extract the ear piece by using a flat screwdriver or an plastic tool, included in the earpiece set. It has a sticky coating on the other side. Remember the position of the speaker.

    SE Arc S back

    7. Put new earpiece in, press it down the socket, so it is firmly in place. Place the small covering plate back, make sure it is locked on the left side as it was before.
    Position the camera back on it’s place, you may hear it clicks when locked.

    8. Put the covering silver panel back on the base on the phone, as before – push it firmly down, so there is no gap left, do it gradually – moving clockwise around the borders.

    9. Insert memory, SIM and Battery back. Turn on the phone and test the earpiece. Congratulations!