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Software Upgrades

Pidgin 2.0 Released 249

An anonymous reader writes "After nearly two years of development, Pidgin 2.0 has finally been released! Originally called Gaim, Pidgin is a powerful and robust open source instant messaging client that supports many protocols. Pidgin 2.0 features a completely redesigned interface with attractive new icons and and a new status management system that was designed for optimal usability. Pidgin 2.0 also adds support for universal buddy icon management and smooth-scroll functionality for conversation windows. A comprehensive review at Ars Technica explores the new features in Pidgin 2.0 and demonstrates how to use the new D-Bus bindings with Python to make Pidgin's status system send updates to Twitter."
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Pidgin 2.0 Released

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  • VoIP (Score:4, Interesting)

    by utnapistim ( 931738 ) <dan@barbus.gmail@com> on Friday May 04, 2007 @08:24AM (#18986455) Homepage

    So ... will it support VoIP?

    If it connects with GTalk (for example) it would be cool (and long overdue)

    • Re:VoIP (Score:5, Informative)

      by Midnight Thunder ( 17205 ) on Friday May 04, 2007 @08:41AM (#18986653) Homepage Journal
      So ... will it support VoIP?

      Not this version. If you read the conclusion section of the ArsTechnica article, you will see that this is on the roadmap, but when is another matter.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by jbrax ( 315669 )
      So ... will it support VoIP?

      Check out this open source VoIP and video conferencing software http://www.openwengo.com/ [openwengo.com]

      WengoPhone 2.1 has instant messaging support, implemented using libgaim, can connect to MSN Messenger, OSCAR protocol based networks such as AIM or ICQ, XMPP based networks such as Google Talk and Jabber, and the Yahoo Messenger networks.
  • Pfft. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by kraemate ( 1065878 ) on Friday May 04, 2007 @08:28AM (#18986505)
    I cant believe that there is no jingle support yet.
    IIRC, google released a library for voice extensions to the XMPP protocol quite a while back. When is gaim/pidgin going to incorporate it - so that i can make calls to gtalk users? The other clients like psi, kopete have already done this - why cant gaim?

    • I stopped using and recommending it 6 months ago, because I was fed up with the lack of progress on the project. Specifically, it stopped connecting to the msn network. Back then it was clearly a dead project, as 2 months would go by without the next beta version being released.
      • Re:Pfft. (Score:5, Informative)

        by Miseph ( 979059 ) on Friday May 04, 2007 @08:53AM (#18986787) Journal
        Two months ago they were held back by an agreement with AOL that they wouldn't make any major releases as part of a trademark suit. A couple of weeks ago they announced that the project's name was changing, that AOL was getting off their back, and that they would resume non-beta updates. Lo and behold, they've released one.
        • What do the legal issues with AOL have to do with not having Jingle support yet? Sure, the AOL debacle prevented releases, but no reason not to develop meanwhile...
    • Re:Pfft. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by igotmybfg ( 525391 ) on Friday May 04, 2007 @08:45AM (#18986715) Homepage
      Because you and I are too lazy to write the plugin?
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Frosty Piss ( 770223 )

        Because you and I are too lazy to write the plugin?

        This is something that really pisses me off about the fanboys, they assume a defensive stance when someone critiques their pet project. The standard "why don't YOU submit a patch?" Because I'm a user, not a programmer? Oh, I forgot, Open Source isn't for us little people, the users.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Hatta ( 162192 )
      Last I checked, gaim's support for file-transfers was very hit or miss. More miss than hit really. Has this changed?
      • by bcmm ( 768152 )
        Last time I checked, MSN's file transfer sucked with every client, including the official one.
        • In my experience with GAIM (from behind NAT and I stopped using it after beta 2 or so), you will always get the shittest possible transfer type - i.e. the one that goes through the MSN servers and restricts you to about 2kB/s download speed.

          Nonetheless when I briefly made the mistake of installing the MSN client, it would consistently crash my router if someone sent me a file, so mayve a slower protocol isn't all bad!!
  • I've got a stable copy of 2.0.0.beta5 of Gaim so any point in upgrading as its stable and works. Great believe in if it ain't broke don't fix it
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Vector7 ( 2410 )
      Sure, but by that logic you ought to be using Gaim 1.5. Basically every change to the UI in the 2.0 betas and Pidgin is a step backward. Their bizarre scheme for managing status is horrible and so confusing (and in the betas I've used, outright broken) that I've just stopped setting my status to away at all. They've added that useless Accounts menu to the buddy list, which makes the menu bar so wide that that you can't shrink the window down to a reasonable size without cutting it off (no, a 300 pixel wide
      • which makes the menu bar so wide that that you can't shrink the window down to a reasonable size without cutting it off

        Do you really actually use the Help menu? I mean, really. Don't bitch about it if it isn't a problem.
      • Their bizarre scheme for managing status is horrible and so confusing (and in the betas I've used, outright broken) that I've just stopped setting my status to away at all
        Seems like a user error to me, because it works fine on both Windows and KDE for me. I think it's a much more sane scheme than Kopete has, where you have to set a message and an away status separately.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by bernywork ( 57298 ) *
      Works fine, looks different. Differnt icons, simpler layout. More pretty.
    • Just went from 2.0 beta 7 to 2.0.0 (in Windows)... about the only difference I can tell is that the green ball in the system tray is now a smaller green ball with a chat box. That's a good thing; a green ball is somewhat ambiguous if it's just a green ball that occasionally changes to a chat box when I get a message. The upgrade process was painless. Pidgin is a fine example of open source software... pretty slick, most things just work.
  • Popularization (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Nerdfest ( 867930 ) on Friday May 04, 2007 @08:36AM (#18986613)
    I was going to say 'commercialization', but I don't think that's quite right. I think this is going to be a more common occurrence, with open source project looking beyond simple functionality to usability, appearance, etc, as it does help grab more users, especially in the non-Linux crowd. As long as improving the usability doesn't actually damage the raw functionality, I'm all for it.
    • Oh yeah ... the name changes sometimes help as well. Gimp? Great piece of software, but in dire need of a new name. There's probably other examples too ...
    • by garcia ( 6573 )
      I think this is going to be a more common occurrence, with open source project looking beyond simple functionality to usability, appearance, etc, as it does help grab more users, especially in the non-Linux crowd.

      I haven't used GAIM since I was running Linux solely back in the day (prior to 2002) and now that I use bitlbee I don't have any GUI client. Anyway, back on topic, my co-worker (who's not a Linux geek) wanted a client to do multiple IM platforms as he uses it to communicate with prospective studen
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by Zebedeu ( 739988 )
        You're right. If your coworker didn't like it, then they should just scrap the entire project.
      • I really don't like the UI on GAIM, at least last time I tried it. I prefer Kopete much better. And trying to move somebody who isn't a geek from the pretty colours of MSN to the look of GAIM can be pretty hard. But what other choices are available for windows users who want to use a multi-protocol instant messenger. I just hope Kopete for KDE4 is available for windows. That would be a really nice replacement for msn, and all the other instant messengers I need to use.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          Miranda IM is pretty lightweight, but can be made to be very slick looking if you want it to be via the $foo million plugins for it. It's also OSS, but windows only.
  • by Uniquitous ( 1037394 ) on Friday May 04, 2007 @08:36AM (#18986615)
    Kudos to the developers, pidgin is a much less clunky interface compared to gaim.
  • Psychic mode (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Chang ( 2714 )
    Does anybody know what the "Display Notification Message in Conversations" option in psychic mode does?

    Do that let people know somehow that you are using psychic mode?

    I've been using Pidgin (gaim) for a long time but I just turned that option on today.
  • by Monoman ( 8745 )
    I didn't see SIP support in my scan of the article. I currently have that ability with Trillian via a free 3rd party plugin to use SIP to connect to my employer's MS LiveCommunications server.

    I am not sure if that is a must have for me so I will give the new version a try.
    • Re:SIP? (Score:4, Informative)

      by Bytefreak ( 576247 ) on Friday May 04, 2007 @09:36AM (#18987347)
      SIP Support is there as of last year, won't help much as as MS have used non standard extensions for LCS....Happily there's a guy working on a gaim plugin for LCS which uses a modified version of the SIP/Simple code:

      http://fixxxer.cc/blog-en/?cat=9 [fixxxer.cc]

      It's still in the early stages, but it's getting there and has the advantage of being cross-platform and open-source, hoping I can use it to talk to our internal IM network from my linux box.

  • by vjmurphy ( 190266 ) on Friday May 04, 2007 @08:54AM (#18986809) Homepage
    "use the new D-Bus bindings with Python to make Pidgin's status system send updates to Twitter"

    Or you could cross-connect the Bullshittean Field Emitter to the Warp Core Ejector using quasi-bosonic tachyon particles.

    Any anyhow, shouldn't the Python, having been attracted by the Twitter, eat the Pidgin?
    • by deniable ( 76198 )
      It's obviously Enterprise grade software.

      You forgot to modulate. Modulation is everything. :)
  • pidgin-encryption? (Score:4, Informative)

    by shr3k ( 451065 ) on Friday May 04, 2007 @08:56AM (#18986825) Homepage
    It seems everytime GAIM had a new version, GAIM-Encryption [sourceforge.net] seemed to always be there with a new release of their plugin to work with it. But now that they made all these changes to Pidgin, I don't think Gaim-Encryption has followed suit. Has anyone been able to get the encryption plugin working with Pidgin? The installer for 3.0beta8 doesn't recognize Pidgin and, despite forcing an install, Pidgin won't pick up on the encryption plugin.

    I'd say that's the only thing keeping me from embracing Pidgin at the moment. Otherwise, the new UI looks nice.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Off-the-recording messaging [cypherpunks.ca] is better.

      How is this different from the gaim-encryption plugin?
      The gaim-encryption plugin provides encryption and authentication, but not deniability or perfect forward secrecy.
    • by caseih ( 160668 )
      I don't know of anyone who uses Gaim-Encryption these days. Instead the standard is OTR (off-the-record) which is supported by many IM clients on many platforms. Consider switching to it.
    • I should have one keyring, damn it. This isn't specifically a problem with GAIM-Encryption (and they go over why they chose not to use GPG in the FAQ*), but I have to maintain a keyring for my email, for GAIM-OTR (the encryption plugin I use), and for WASTE--and there's no good reason to do this! The PGP standard has a very robust standard for key management, which should be usable for pretty much any situation--and it is. WASTE keys work exactly like PGP keys do, only you have to import and manage them sep
  • by gpinzone ( 531794 ) on Friday May 04, 2007 @09:02AM (#18986869) Homepage Journal
    This is supposed to be a Trillian killer? The interface is horrible! I'm not even talking about the ability to "skin" the application. Simple things like notifying the user if he/she receives mail is ridiculous the way it's implemented.
    • I have never heard anyone say it is supposed to be a trillian killer.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by pebs ( 654334 )
      This is supposed to be a Trillian killer? The interface is horrible! I'm not even talking about the ability to "skin" the application. Simple things like notifying the user if he/she receives mail is ridiculous the way it's implemented.

      As the other guy said, who is calling this a Trillian killer?

      In any case, Trillian already killed itself by not including Jabber support in the free version. (And who is going to pay for that garbage anyway?)

      Of course those of us who don't run Windows don't give a shit about
  • Very nice UI (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Lisandro ( 799651 ) on Friday May 04, 2007 @09:04AM (#18986881)
    I like the new UI a lot - functionally, Pidgin is the same as the earlier Gaim 2.0 betas with a sleeker look. It also seems a bit more responsive, IMHO. The Pidgin guys have done a great job, IMHO.

    PS: Will we ever get the stock emoticons for each IM protocol back again? The default ones stocked with Pidgin are nice, but i always preferred to see the "original" ones for each client.
    • You mean they changed the protocol icons between the 2.0 betas and the final 2.0 release? Please tell me there's a way to change them back.
      • I migrated from Gaim 2.0.6b to Pidgin 2.0.7b yesterday, and yes, the original emoticons for each protocol are no longer there - there's a very nice set of custom ones (supporting most of the MSN set) though. I'd still prefer the original ones... i guess a third-party package will appear sooner or later.
  • Sweet Zombie Jesus!!!
  • Ok Adium uses libgaim (or libpidgin now I presume) but the interface is so much nicer.

    It looks better, is easier to use and to configure - I much prefered using it - sadly I no longer have a mac and Adium is only on OSX - I sincerely wish it would be ported to linux!!
    • Adium has a nice interface, but it's also quite resource hungry (about on par with Thunderbird). I suspect that's because of the fancy UI.

      Oh, and it's a PITA to get Adium to just give you a plain text representation of what's being written. You have to go to their extension website and hunt for half an hour until you find a theme that is somewhat ergonomic.
    • by miscz ( 888242 )
      Adium looks better but it doesn't have better interface. It took me ages to find how to disable spellcheck, I was pretty amazed with Adium at first but then it became irritating.
  • Slashdotted (Score:3, Informative)

    by Brainix ( 748988 ) <brainix@gmail.com> on Friday May 04, 2007 @09:16AM (#18987063) Homepage
    Uh oh. The Pidgin server [pidgin.im] seems to be hammered, but you can still download it from its SourceForge page [sourceforge.net].
  • My Analysis (Score:5, Informative)

    by 99BottlesOfBeerInMyF ( 813746 ) on Friday May 04, 2007 @09:25AM (#18987195)

    I've always rather liked GAIM and it has been a while since there have been real improvements, so I thought I'd take a look and see how far they've managed to come.

    I liked

    • Interface looks better, if not perfect.
    • Nicer plug-in system

    I disliked:

    • No Mac OS X support
    • No built in encryption or support for OTR
    • No support for voice or video.

    One thing that annoys me is they took the time to add spell checking for both OS's. I love having spell checking in my IM client, but it is not a function that every single program should have to supply by itself. I'm already running a spell checker in my text editor and my layout application and my e-mail client, and pretty much everything else. This is one of several functions that should be provided at the OS level to all applications that want it, not by each application individually. Will they waste time adding grammar checking next? How about translations between languages? What about dictionary/thesaurus/encyclopedia lookups?

    Calling all Windows and Linux developers. It is time to catch up and make universal services a built in function of the OS so developers stop wasting time re-implementing things and concentrate on features specific to their program, like encryption and VoIP support.

    • Just an FYI: KDE already provides spiffy central spellchecking, available for apps to take advantage of. Konqueror is quite happily spellchecking the contents of this comment field as I type it, for example (using the same checker/dictionary that, say, my e-mail client does).
      • Just an FYI: KDE already provides spiffy central spellchecking, available for apps to take advantage of.

        Yeah, that is about halfway there, but KParts (the feature you're talking about) still doesn't cut it because the application developer specifically has to know about and include the feature (spell checking for example) before it becomes accessible to the user.

        For example, KDE and OS X both ship with a spellchecking service. In KDE developers can opt to include it in their apps. With OS X, unless the develop uses some funky non-standard API for text, it simply works. Now I have a Kubuntu desktop and an O

  • I have downloaded and installed Pidgin and it looks nice and all, but it does not seem able to tunnel through our proxy. So far the only IM that succeeds is Miranda which I hate soooo much. :)
    The settings that work in Miranda are "" proxy type and proxy name, with no authorisation. No combination of HTTP, SOCKS4 or SOCKS5 with or without my account credentials seems to work in Pidgin. Which is a pity.
  • I find the main MSN clients Offline Message mechanism very handy when I want to ping a message over to a friend and be sure they get it the next time they login.

    Does this new release suport this? GAIM 2 didn't.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by thaig ( 415462 )
      Select Tools->Buddy pounce.

      Your client must be left on and running for this to work. It has been in GAIM for a while now.
  • all complain (Score:3, Insightful)

    by aled ( 228417 ) on Friday May 04, 2007 @09:28AM (#18987259)
    So many complains about GAIM/PIDGIN and still the site is slashdotted.
  • That's the feature I want!!!
    (MSN is laughing at us.)
  • New Sounds Are Nice! (Score:5, Informative)

    by Sounder40 ( 243087 ) * on Friday May 04, 2007 @10:01AM (#18987755)
    If you like the new sounds in Pidgin, you can thank the artist who developed them by going to Magnatune.com [magnatune.com] and buy his album. Not just because you like the Pidgin sounds, not just because you like Indie Rock, but because you like independent music and independent music publishers like Magnatune. Lot's of good karma available by buying this one.
    • Lot's of good karma available by buying this one.

      Sorry, I'm already at the karma kap.

      Seriously though, you don't seem to understand the word karma...

  • checking for NSS... yes
    checking for snprintf... yes
    checking for connect... (cached) yes
    checking for me pot o' gold... no
    checking for gethostid... yes
    checking for lrand48... yes
    checking for memcpy... yes
  • I wish it supported Office Communicator. I am a function-first kind of guy, and the damn client doesn't even used tabs!! It is so clunky it is painful.

    Now I have to use it at work, and use it all day. It is nice that it integrates with the Office calendars, and updates your status according to your calendar. Everyone uses it, and the ability to look people up in the directory is nice (and no dorky names, your id is your email address). But having multiple different windows up instead of just 1 kills me
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Andy Dodd ( 701 )
      If you read above, there are some early attempts at supporting Office Communicator, but none that are very reliable or polished.

      The reason is that Microsoft bastardized their SIP/SIMPLE implementation in LCS so badly (in typical Microsoft fashion) that it won't interoperate with any software that is actually SIP/SIMPLE compliant. So lots of IM programs support SIP/SIMPLE, but to talk to MS LCS, they have to break their implementation so badly that they won't talk to anything else!
  • Every time I try to send a message in AIM, i get:
    Unable to send message: In local permit/deny

    Ny clues? I tried upgrading from gaim, even wiped out my ~/.gaim dir, no help.
  • Text client (Score:4, Interesting)

    by cxreg ( 44671 ) on Friday May 04, 2007 @02:34PM (#18992431) Homepage Journal
    Let it not be overlooked that 2.0 includes "Finch", which is a text mode IM client! (instant messaging in screen)++

    I've been using CenterICQ [thekonst.net] for a couple years, but after trying the last beta of Finch (was gaim-text at the time), I'm sold. It's really slick.

Man is an animal that makes bargains: no other animal does this-- no dog exchanges bones with another. -- Adam Smith