Pidgin :: Instant Messaging

by derek on June 21, 2007 · 16 comments

Pidgin Instant Messaging Tool

For the longest time I have used Yahoo Messenger as my sole means of sending and receiving instant messages.
While there have been times where I have missed out on chatting with people using AIM, MSN or any other popular IM service, Yahoo has served me pretty well.
Late last year my employer decided to block Yahoo Messenger and most of us turned to Trillian, which for some reason they decided not to block. I’ve never really been happy with Trillian and recently decided to install Pidgin, both at work and at home.
What is Pidgin?
In case you have not heard about Pidgin before, which was previously known as Gaim, it is an instant messaging program that is compatible with Windows, Linux, BSD and other UNIX operating systems (check out Adium if you use OS X).
The beautiful part of Pidgin is that it allows you to log into multiple accounts on different instant messaging networks at the same time. This means you can be chatting with friends on Yahoo Messenger, AIM and MSN all at the same time.
Is that all Pidgin does?
While I think the ability to chat with friends on various IM platforms through one tool is pretty cool by itself, Pidgin does even more to set itself apart. In addition to supporting many features of the various IM networks such as file transfers and typing notification, Pidgin goes even further with custom features and support for plugins.
With an appreciation of the power that plugins provide to tools such as WordPress, I was very excited to see that Pidgin supports plugins such as text replacement, buddy ticker, spell checking, tabbed conversations and more.
One plugin that I think is pretty cool and will be experimenting with is Pidgin-Encryption. As you can likely guess by the name, this plugin transparently encrypts your instant messages with RSA encryption.
Say Hello
Earlier today I had the pleasure to chat for a few minutes with Shawn Knight regarding an idea for an upcoming post so I thought I would invite everyone else to say hello as well.
As I mentioned earlier, I’ve used Yahoo Messenger for the longest time and that has been my main IM account. Today I signed up for an account at MSN in order to chat with Shawn and at one time I had an AIM account but can no longer remember that password.
If you’d like to say hello some time, you can find me at either of the following:

  • Yahoo :: dsemmler
  • MSN :: dsemmler (at) gmail DOT com
  • AIM :: dsemmler (at) gmail DOT com

Once I remember the password to my AIM account, the username is the same as that of my Yahoo account. Unfortunately the AIM website is not allowing me to reset my password right now so that account is on hold.
Let me know if you have any questions about Pidgin or feel free to ping me to chat about anything else that is on your mind. I look forward to hearing from you!
*UPDATE* :: With the inability to retrieve the password on my old AIM account, I have created a new account and have noted the name above.

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{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Tyler Ingram June 22, 2007 at 8:52 am

A few of us at work use Pidgin, but I didn’t like it mainly because it referred to IRC channels as Chat Rooms. And don’t get me started on that.. the IRC is definitely not what it used to be and people have a really weird sense of netiquette when it comes to the IRC now.
Other than that Pidgin seems to be ok as an all-in-one IM client. Especially for those who don’t want to pay money for Trillian Pro.


Dave June 22, 2007 at 9:05 am

I think you have your AIM name wrong…


Derrich June 25, 2007 at 9:15 am

You should be a rapper, Dave. Just sayin’. 😛


derek June 25, 2007 at 10:20 am

Why do you say that? It seems to work and I have connected with one other AIM user so far using that name. Since I could not retrieve my old password I signed up for a new account and it asked for an email address as the name, which is what I listed above.


Dave June 25, 2007 at 10:23 am

I have no clue why it didn’t work before, but now it does 🙂


Damien Riley June 23, 2007 at 5:26 pm

Pretty hip looking. I’ll give it a spin. Thanks for that


Olst June 24, 2007 at 3:23 am

With the new libs and the total interface change it is much more useful for communicating with people. I just liked teh Gaim icon more 😀


Hungary Real Estate June 25, 2007 at 5:55 am

can you speak to icq users? i like icq it have a free sms program


derek June 25, 2007 at 10:22 am

@Damien :: I’m liking it quite a bit so I would be interested in your thoughts if you give it a try. Drop me a line once you are connected so I can add you to my “buddy” lists.
@Olst :: Back when it was Gaim I never was able to get it configured right to work with the corporate firewall and proxy at work so I gave up on it. But so far I am really liking Pidgin.
@Hungary :: Yes you can connect to icq users from what I read on their site, although I haven’t tried that.


ms danielle June 26, 2007 at 1:13 pm

yea i’m on adium. hit me up anytime, you have my aim.


derek June 26, 2007 at 4:22 pm

Thanks Danielle, I’ve got you on my list now. 🙂


Saman Sadeghi June 27, 2007 at 3:27 pm

I am a faithful Trillian user, I tried GAIM once but wasn’t impressed (because it lacked a lot of features that Trillian had) – has that improved?
What about a Trillin vs. Pidgin review article?


derek June 27, 2007 at 11:15 pm

Do you use Trillian Pro or the free version? I was using the free version and was not overly impressed, although I only used it for basic chatting so it wasn’t a big deal.
With Pidgin you now have the ability to use custom plugins, which I think makes it pretty cool.
Trillian vs. Pidgin review is a good idea, I’d just have to get Trillian back to do a just comparison. I’ll add it to my list but feel free to do so on your site if you get to it before me.


Saman Sadeghi June 28, 2007 at 10:35 pm

I’m using Trillian Pro 3, and I’m really looking forward to the latest version: Trillian Astra


Aloha Nema@Automotive Ezine November 4, 2008 at 8:10 am

I love Pidgin because I can sign my two accounts: Gtalk and Yahoo with one application while running Gtalk and Yahoo Messenger eat too much RAM.
I also try Miranda and I have to say it is the tiny IM application(118kb) with basic feature for IM.
Aloha Nemas last blog post..Students Make Their Move For Eco-Friendly Transportation


Bim April 8, 2010 at 9:58 am

Have you explored many of the plugins for pidgin, especially facebook plugins etc?
I’m curious how they work.
Thanks for your opinion on pidgin


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