By DaveLevy on Sep 11, 2008
I was introduced to IM by my US colleagues (& my children). Many of the former use AOL to forward IM's to their phones. This has become even easier to use with the advent of the iphone. Sun has also implememented an XMPP service and I came to the IM scene with a couple of YIM contacts as well. So I adopted GAIM and went with the pidgin people when that came along, because of Solaris so I only have to worry about the protocol I use for those colleague like me with multiple service accounts.
I have recently had a real problem with pidgin in XMPP chat rooms, and when my boss decided to open a permanent chat room, these problems had to be fixed. Basically, I have reverted to Pidgin 2.0.1 for Windows. I did experiment with using pidgin inside an Ubuntu Virtual box instance and it worked fine, an interesting use case for Virual Box. I propose to raise a bug/note at pidgin's site, but you can use the [READ MORE] button below to read my more detailed notes, which cover the failure symptoms, Google Talk and more about facebook.
I am using a laptop with Windows XP as the operating system. The basic problem is that once an XMPP chat room is opened the mouse pointer disappears from the window space displayed by pidgin and multiple conversations become quite difficult. I need to flag this at the pidgin site, I wonder how I'll discover when they fix it.
I have OTR and google facebook chat plugins installed. When reverting to V 2.0.1 of pidging, the installer asks if it should regress to the previouls GTK kit. I suspect that this is where the problem is. I regressed the GTK version and find that XMPP chat rooms and pidgin are much more stable. OTR regresses fine. The facebook chat plugin does not. I run the installer, it seems to work fine, and then when trying to create a facebook account, it doesn't offer me a facebook service. I have tried to install both versions 1.25 and 1.39. I shall pass this on to the author, but I hadn't fully got this working as most of my tests left one of us using the facebook browser. I need to make this work with both pidgin and adium clients. However, at least I can use XMPP chat rooms. One feature I dislike, with many I believe, is that when a broadcast message is sent to the room, pidgin does not alert the desk top unlike a 121 message where it writes an icon into the system tray and flashes the iconified buddy list icon. (It does change the font colour and style of the chat room title in the window tab, but you can only see this if the window is on top.) If a message is signaled as sent to you, it will write an icon into the system tray and the signal is to include the handle in the message. Pidgin aslo has handle auto completion to make this easy. (You don't need the @ sign in XMPP chat either, just type a couple of characters and use the [tab] button.
AS part of the XMPP testing I opened a Google Talk account and connected
with Chris Gerhard. There is a Google help page on configuring Pidgin as a client,
I have struggled through this since I do not have either mail
accounts, so I need to use gmail.com as my domain. I claimed a "Google talk" handle using the talkgadget. This
becomes my pidgin Screen Name.
I used gmail.com as the Domain as advised by the
documentation and my password for the google services I do consume.
The connect server is talk.google.com and we need to use port 5222 This now seems to log me in. . More coming soon. 10th Oct 2008.Excellent,
All well and good. Unfortunately its a bit of a waste of time, since Google's XMPP service doesn't support chat rooms so I can't test them. On the other hand I now have a google talk account for those of you who don't use the other accounts I have. Mail me for the handle, because I can't find the user dictionary server which is another XMPP feature.