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I've been trying to make a voice call to my girlfriend, but this has proven difficult. I'm home sick, and don't have the charger for my standard computer here. Also, my phone recently broke.

What I do have is my trusty old laptop running Debian, so I didn't worry as I thought I could just skype her. How wrong I was! It turns out that finding a voice call app that runs on my old i386 architecture is tricky.

On my standard computer I'd use Skype, but it turns out their app only supports 64 bit architecture. "Then you could run Skype in your browser" someone might say, but as I tried downloading Google Chrome it turns out they require 64 bits as well. I've tried to look at some other VoIP solutions such as Viber, but as far as I can tell they all have the same policy.

Any solution would have to be free and not to complicated to install. The girlfriend in question has a Mac, so any exclusively Linux specific software would be off the table.

Ideally, I would not like to sign up for a google account, or any other fishy surveillance deal.

Is this too much to ask for in this modern world?

Edit: I'm not necessarily looking for something to install, so if there's something I could run in my browser that could be interesting as well!

TLDR: I'm looking for some free VoIP software that will run on an i386 architecture computer running Debian, which lets me talk to a Mac user.

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  • Not really a software-to-install – but would browser-based solutions be possible? Not sure if i386 is a show-stopper here, but there are services like Jitsi Meet coming to mind. Your GF could use a "native client" (if available for her Mac) so she hears when you ring, while you use your browser and the corresponding website. If that's an option.
    – Izzy
    Nov 9 '20 at 22:55
  • It seems like it works! Thanks! If this would be an answer I'd mark it as a solution unless something even better appears within a few hours.
    – EdvinW
    Nov 10 '20 at 7:16
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As you just confirmed, a browser-based solution would be possible:

There are services like Jitsi Meet. Your girlfriend could use a "native client" (there's a Desktop version available for MAc, as well as a mobile client for iOS) so she hears when you ring, while you use your browser and the corresponding website. Though it's intended as conference solution, you can call this a "personal conference" with just two members – or even invite others (relatives, friends) to join up and reduce your home-sickness.

More than just a side-note: other than Skype, WhatsApp & Co, Jitsi Meet is known as pretty much privacy friendly. Of course you have to trust the hoster of the conference, but you can make your choice: it is free and open-source, so there are many installations all around the world to choose from.

Enjoy!

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