External Microphone not working

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http://www.linuxquestions.org – It's great to be a newby on this forum. I have been loving Ubuntu 9.10 and all was working fine until I tried to Skype. My Mic stopped working. I have tried all avenues. Sound prefs, input/output connections all I hear is static hiss. How can I resolve the problem? I've even tried different mic's. Please help. Josof (HowTos)