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Protocol Specific Questions

  1. AIM (OSCAR) Protocol
    1. Can I set my profile?
    2. I just changed my buddy icon and I can't see the new one!
    3. Why are some of my buddies are not showing up as online?
    4. Can I use AIM URI's such as "aim:goim?screenname=seanegn"?
    5. Does Pidgin support DirectIM and IM Image?
    6. Can I send SMS messages?
    7. Can I add SMS numbers to my buddy list?
  2. ICQ (OSCAR) Protocol
    1. Important note about ICQ FAQs
    2. Can I send SMS messages?
    3. Why do my buddies' messages display incorrectly?
  3. IRC Protocol
    1. How do I join a channel?
    2. Is there a way to make Pidgin automatically authenticate/identify me …
    3. Can I hide messages from NickServ, ChanServ, etc. on login?
    4. How do I identify myself with a buddy pounce?
    5. How do I send a message to a user or bot on login?
    6. Can I automatically join channels on login?
    7. Is it possible to change the user name that appears in username@hostname?
    8. How can I set/change my real name?
    9. Why does text display incorrectly?
    10. How can I hide join/part messages?
  4. XMPP (Jabber) Protocol
    1. Setting up XMPP accounts
      1. Does Pidgin support Jabber?
      2. Where is the difference between Jabber and XMPP?
      3. Does Pidgin support Nimbuzz, Web.de Messenger, GMX Messenger or 1&1 …
      4. How do I choose which XMPP server to use or configure an XMPP account?
      5. What is the "Resource" field for in the account editor?
      6. How do I change my resource string?
      7. How can I configure resource priority?
      8. Why can't I log on to my Google Talk/Google Apps account anymore?
      9. How do I configure Pidgin to connect to Google Talk for my domain …
      10. I'm using Google Apps with a non-Google e-mail address. Can I use …
      11. How do I use Pidgin with MeinVZ/StudiVZ's chat box?
      12. Why do I get an "SSL Handshake Failed" error when connecting to …
      13. Why do I get a "Server does not use any supported authentication …
      14. Why do I get a "Not authorized" error after turning on two-factor …
    2. XMPP Buddies
      1. What does "Cancel Presence Notification" do?
      2. How can I deauthorize a buddy from seeing my status?
      3. What does "Unsubscribe" do?
    3. XMPP Multi-User-Conferences (Chatrooms)
      1. How do I create a conference?
      2. How do I invite a buddy to a conference?
      3. How do I configure a chatroom?
    4. Miscellaneous
      1. Why can't I send a file?
      2. Which XEPs does libpurple support?
      3. Does Pidgin support Service Discovery or Transports?
  5. Yahoo!(Y!M) Protocol
    1. How do I get blocking someone to work?
    2. Why can't I connect to Yahoo! from behind a firewall or NAT?
    3. Why doesn't Pidgin have the official client's "Firewall with no proxy" …
    4. Can I get a list of Yahoo! chatrooms? What about localized lists?
    5. What protocol does Pidgin use to connect to Yahoo!?
    6. Why doesn't my yahoo.co.uk account work? (error code:"Invalid username")
    7. I get a message that says "Too many failed login attempts" but I …
  6. MSN Protocol
    1. Setting up MSN accounts and Connection issues
      1. I can't connect to MSN using Pidgin 2.4.3 or earlier
      2. Why can't I log into MSN?
      3. Why isn't MSN in the list of protocols?
      4. The MSN plugin won't load, but I have Mozilla NSS or GNUTLS or both!
      5. What does "MSN: S: 911 3" in the debug window mean when I can't connect?
      6. How do I set my MSN Friendly Name (the name other users see)?
      7. Can I set my friendly name with a plugin?
    2. MSN Buddies
      1. What does "Has You" in the buddy list tooltip mean?
      2. Why is "Has You" gone in 2.5.0?
      3. Why do I keep getting a "Buddy List Synchronization" error?
    3. Conversations
      1. Can I turn off displaying nicknames/friendly names?
      2. Can I turn off displaying custom smileys?
      3. Why do some of my messages result in an error?
    4. Miscellaneous MSN questions
      1. Why are file transfers so slow?
      2. Is there a way to invite more than one person to a chat?
      3. What does "Error reading from switchboard server" mean?
  7. Gadu-Gadu (GG) Protocol
    1. What is Gadu-Gadu?
    2. I compiled Pidgin from source. Why doesn't it have Gadu-Gadu support?
  8. Zephyr Protocol
    1. What is Zephyr?
    2. Other Zephyr clients (zwgc, owl, tzc) work, but Pidgin dies with …
    3. Pidgin isn't working, but I never got any other Zephyr client working
    4. How do I avoid compiling Pidgin with Kerberos 4 support?
    5. How do I use Zephyr from behind my firewall?
    6. Why can't I use Zephyr on Windows?
  9. SILC Protocol
    1. What is SILC?
    2. What do I need to use the SILC protocol?
  10. Novell Groupwise Messenger Protocol
    1. Are there any public servers?
    2. I can't seem to get it to work.
  11. Lotus Sametime Protocol
    1. Are there any public servers?
    2. Why doesn't Sametime appear in the protocols list?
    3. Why do I get the error "Not Authorized" when connecting?
  12. Myspace IM Protocol
    1. Why do I see "Protocol error, code 260" when my password is correct?
  13. Bonjour (Link-Local Messaging)
    1. What is Bonjour?
    2. Can I use Windows Pidgin for Bonjour?
  14. MXit
  15. Facebook Chat
  16. Other Protocols
    1. Why does Pidgin not support CyanChat, MS LCS, NateOn, Netsoul, …

AIM (OSCAR) Protocol

Can I set my profile?

Yes, you can. Go to Accounts->account name->Set User Info.

I just changed my buddy icon and I can't see the new one!

First, try IMing yourself a few times. Buddy icons are checked when you IM people, so that may work. If it still doesn't update, check the file size (buddy icons must be smaller than 4kb) and the image size (it should be 48x48 or 50x50 in most cases). Also, check the file type. GIF or JPEG images are best supported. If all of that checks out and it still doesn't work, try restarting Pidgin.

Why are some of my buddies are not showing up as online?

AOL has set a limit for the maximum number of people you can have in your buddy list. This number is currently 500. If you don't think you are anywhere near that limit, it is possible that your server-stored buddy list is corrupt. If you think this might be the case, you can try signing on with an official AIM program from AOL. This will usually correct any problems with the list.

Can I use AIM URI's such as "aim:goim?screenname=seanegn"?

Yes; you need to register purple-url-handler in your browser. This requires that Pidgin be built with dbus support, otherwise purple-url-handler will not be installed.

Does Pidgin support DirectIM and IM Image?

Yes, absolutely. Keep in mind that you must establish a DirectIM session before you're able to insert a picture into the conversation.

Can I send SMS messages?

Yep, just send an IM to the person's phone number. For example, if the phone number is (919) 555-1234, you would message +19195551234 We think this should work for countries with a country code of 1 (the United States and Canada).

Can I add SMS numbers to my buddy list?

Yes. You should be able to add phone numbers to your buddy list using the same format as explained in the previous question.

ICQ (OSCAR) Protocol

Important note about ICQ FAQs

The entire AIM section applies to ICQ as well. Information in this section is in addition to the AIM section above.

Can I send SMS messages?

Yes, starting with pidgin version 2.2.0, you can send SMS via ICQ. This works only with carriers which ICQ supports. For example, if you want to send SMS to a phone number 052-3999999 in Israel, open a new conversation window in ICQ and enter the following: +972523999999 or (+<country code><area code without 0><phone number>).

Why do my buddies' messages display incorrectly?

ICQ has no comprehension of character sets or encodings. It simply sends (almost) any random chunk of data a user enters. Pidgin by default assumes everything is UTF-8. If this is not the case, you will need to edit your account (Accounts->your ICQ account->Edit Account) and change the Encoding setting on the Advanced tab. You will need to enter the correct encoding for your buddies' messages there. At this time it is currently possible to configure only one encoding for an ICQ account.

Some details about this should be collected on the ICQEncodingProgress page.

IRC Protocol

How do I join a channel?

Create an IRC account and then sign on. After you have signed on, you can use Buddies->Join A Chat on the buddy list to join a channel. In any window, either a conversation or a chat, in which your IRC user is the sender, you can also use /join to connect to a new channel.

Is there a way to make Pidgin automatically authenticate/identify me on login?

Can I hide messages from NickServ, ChanServ, etc. on login?

Try the irchelper plugin from the Purple Plugin Pack. This plugin provides fields to enter the services bot's nickname and your services password. It also automatically suppresses messages from the services bots sent upon connection.

Alternatively, see the next question for a way to do authentication with buddy pounces.

NB: This plugin does also work with Q on QuakeNet, not just with IRC networks that use NickServ.

How do I identify myself with a buddy pounce?

How do I send a message to a user or bot on login?

  1. Enable your IRC account.
  2. Add the nick of the user or bot to your buddy list
  3. Right-click the new buddy and click "Add Buddy Pounce" to create a new pounce
  4. Make sure "Signs on" is the only checked box in the "Pounce When Buddy..." section
  5. Make sure "Send a message" is checked under "Action"
  6. Enter the message, such as:
    identify mypassword
    
  7. Make sure "Recurring" is checked beneath "Options" or the pounce will work only once
  8. Click Save to save the pounce.

Note that you do not include '/msg nickname' as part of the message in the pounce.

Can I automatically join channels on login?

On the buddy list, select Buddies->Add Chat. Use this dialog to add the chat to your buddy list. Once the chat appears in your list, right-click on it and select Auto-Join. The channel will auto-join whenever you sign onto your IRC account.

Is it possible to change the user name that appears in username@hostname?

Go to the Accounts menu. Select your IRC account and click Edit Account. Click the Advanced tab. Enter a name in the Username field.

How can I set/change my real name?

Go to the Accounts menu. Select your IRC account and click Edit Account. Click the Advanced tab. Enter a name in the Real Name field.

Why does text display incorrectly?

IRC has no comprehension of character sets or encodings. It simply sends (almost) any random chunk of data a user enters. Pidgin by default assumes everything is UTF-8. If this is not the case, you will need to edit your account (Accounts->your IRC account->Edit Account) and change the Encoding setting on the Advanced tab. You will need to enter the correct encoding for your channels there. You can specify multiple encodings in a comma-delimited list, such as UTF-8,ISO-8859-15, to cause Pidgin to attempt multiple encodings. In this case, each encoding is tried in succession until a successful decode happens or all encodings listed are exhausted.

How can I hide join/part messages?

See this FAQ entry.

XMPP (Jabber) Protocol

Setting up XMPP accounts

Does Pidgin support Jabber?

Yes!

Where is the difference between Jabber and XMPP?

Jabber and XMPP are the same protocol. There is no difference.

Does Pidgin support Nimbuzz, Web.de Messenger, GMX Messenger or 1&1 Messenger?

Yes, these services use the XMPP protocol.

How do I choose which XMPP server to use or configure an XMPP account?

The XMPP server is part of your XMPP ID. For example, in the ID foo@bar.com, bar.com would be the server to use. When entering your XMPP account information into Pidgin, specify everything before the @ (foo in the example ID) in the Username field and everything after the @ (bar.com in the example) in the Domain field.

What is the "Resource" field for in the account editor?

The resource field specifies the XMPP resource you are using. The use of unique resources allows you to connect to your XMPP server from multiple locations simultaneously. Resources might have meaningful names, such as Home, Work, Mobile, etc., or something else entirely that you choose. Pidgin defaults to a blank resource since 2.5.3.

How do I change my resource string?

Go to Accounts->Add/Edit. Find your XMPP account and uncheck the Enabled box. Select the account and click Modify. Change the string in the Resource field.

How can I configure resource priority?

Pidgin (more specifically, libpurple) does not currently support user-configurable priorities. We have a non-configurable priority list that is used:

Status NamePriority
Available 1
Chatty1
Away0
Do Not Disturb0
Extended Away0

Why can't I log on to my Google Talk/Google Apps account anymore?

In previous versions, Pidgin would automatically use the server talk.google.com to connect to your account. This was removed in version 2.5.2 so that these connections would not cause certificate errors.

Many home routers are broken and can't handle the SRV lookups required for Pidgin to automatically determine the server to which to connect. In the debug log, you will see

dnssrv: found 0 SRV entries

You can confirm this by running

Linux: dig +short SRV _xmpp-client._tcp.<server> (e.g. gmail.com)
Windows: nslookup -type=srv _xmpp-client._tcp.<server> (e.g. gmail.com)

If that command returns no results, then you will need to reconfigure the router to not act as the DNS server for the client computers. Typically, this setting is labeled something along the lines of "Use Router as DNS Server" (this should be disabled) in the router's configuration.

If you are using OpenWRT, you can fix this by editing /etc/dnsmasq.conf and comment the following line by adding a # in front of it:

filterwin2k

OpenWRT 10.03.1 'Backfire' needs dnsmasq's 'Domain Needed' to be disabled. In LuCI, this can be found under Network->DHCP and DNS->General->Domain Required (unchecked). Or from the command line by removing the following option from /etc/config/dhcp's dnsmasq section

option 'domainneeded' '1'

If your Google Apps for Your Domain does not have SRV records, add the following entries:

_xmpp-server._tcp.yourdomain.com. IN SRV 5 0 5269 xmpp-server.l.google.com.
_xmpp-server._tcp.yourdomain.com. IN SRV 20 0 5269 alt1.xmpp-server.l.google.com.
_xmpp-server._tcp.yourdomain.com. IN SRV 20 0 5269 alt2.xmpp-server.l.google.com.
_xmpp-server._tcp.yourdomain.com. IN SRV 20 0 5269 alt3.xmpp-server.l.google.com.
_xmpp-server._tcp.yourdomain.com. IN SRV 20 0 5269 alt4.xmpp-server.l.google.com.

Here's a screenshot on how to do this in Linode's DNS manager: No image "https://developer.pidgin.im/raw-attachment/ticket/15180/Adding%20SRV%20records%20for%20XMPP%20in%20Linode's%20DNS%20manager.png" attached to Protocol Specific Questions

How do I configure Pidgin to connect to Google Talk for my domain hosted on Google Apps?

Entering your username for "Username", your Google Apps hosted domain name in the "Domain" field, and your password in the "Password" field should be all that is necessary.

If this doesn't work, it is likely because your domain doesn't have the appropriate DNS SRV records set up or your local DNS doesn't handle SRV records (see this FAQ for more information).

If you are unable to fix the DNS settings, as a workaround you can specify talk.google.com in the "Connect Server" field in the "Advanced" tab.

See: Google's help page, for more information.

I'm using Google Apps with a non-Google e-mail address. Can I use Pidgin with this account?

No, you can't. This is a server-side restriction. Anyway, using GoogleTalk with a non-Google e-mail address (that is, an e-mail account that doesn't live on a GoogleMail server) is not a good idea because these accounts appear to other users as <someterriblenumber>@talk.google.com rather than using something that someone could remember.

How do I use Pidgin with MeinVZ/StudiVZ's chat box?

The protocol used by these services is XMPP. Your username is the email address that you use to log in with, however you need to replace the @ with \40. The domain is vz.net. You don't need to change anything on the Advanced tab.

Why do I get an "SSL Handshake Failed" error when connecting to Oracle's XMPP server?

The SSL/TLS implementation used by Oracle's XMPP server does not support TLS 1.0 or newer, and immediately aborts the negotiation if the ClientHello record version is newer than SSL 3.0. This causes issues when Pidgin is built with GnuTLS SSL support, as GnuTLS defaults to negotiating TLS 1.0. In order to work around this, you either need to build Pidgin with NSS SSL support or upgrade to Pidgin 2.7.0 or newer and run Pidgin like this:

PURPLE_GNUTLS_PRIORITIES="stbeehive.oracle.com=NORMAL:%COMPAT:-VERS-TLS1.2:-VERS-TLS1.1" pidgin

Why do I get a "Server does not use any supported authentication method" error?

If you get this error, have a look in your debug log to see if you also get the error message "sasl: sasl_state is -1, failing the mech and trying again" If you are getting this, a workaround is to try adding your hostname (from /etc/hostname) to your /etc/hosts as an alias for 127.0.0.1 then reconnect.

Why do I get a "Not authorized" error after turning on two-factor authentication?

If you get this error, you might need to allow "less secure apps" to connect via https://www.google.com/settings/security/lesssecureapps or set an app password for Pidgin via https://security.google.com/settings/security/apppasswords

XMPP Buddies

What does "Cancel Presence Notification" do?

See the next question.

How can I deauthorize a buddy from seeing my status?

Right-click the buddy on the buddy list and select Cancel Presence Notification. Note that the buddy will have to request authorization again to be able to see your presence.

What does "Unsubscribe" do?

If you select "Unsubscribe" from the menu presented when right-clicking an XMPP buddy, you will no longer see that buddy's presence. You will need to re-request authorization to resume seeing the buddy's presence.

XMPP Multi-User-Conferences (Chatrooms)

How do I create a conference?

There are two methods:

  1. Join the conference
    1. Select "Join a Chat" from the buddy list's "Buddies" menu.
    2. Select your XMPP account.
    3. Fill in the fields you see.
      • "Room" should be the short name of the conference. For example, "myconference"
      • "Server" is the server on which the conference will be created. It must be a MUC server, such as conference.jabber.org. The chat's ID will be Room@server, so the example "myconference" would have the id "myconference@….
      • "Handle" is the name you wish to be displayed in the chat. It is similar in concept to a nickname on IRC.
      • "Password" is optional for creating a new room. You probably don't want to fill this field in.
    4. Click "Join."
    5. You will see a dialog asking you about creating the new room. You can either accept the default configuration or configure the room, at your option.
  2. Add the conference to your roster (buddy list)
    1. Select "Add Chat" from the buddy list's "Buddies" menu.
    2. Select your XMPP account.
    3. Fill in the fields you see.
      • "Room" should be the short name of the conference. For example, "myconference"
      • "Server" is the server on which the conference will be created. It must be a MUC server, such as conference.jabber.org. The chat's ID will be Room@server, so the example "myconference" would have the id "myconference@….
      • "Handle" is the name you wish to be displayed in the chat. It is similar in concept to a nickname on IRC.
      • "Password" is optional for creating a new room. You probably don't want to fill this field in.
      • "Alias" is the alias you wish to assign to the chat. By assigning an alias, you can display a useful description in the buddy list instead of the chat's name.
      • "Group" is the group in your buddy list in which you wish the chat to appear.
    4. Click "Add."
    5. Find the chat in your buddy list and double-click it.
    6. You will see a dialog asking you about creating the new room. You can either accept the default configuration or configure the room, at your option.

How do I invite a buddy to a conference?

Select "Invite" from the chat's "Conversation" menu. Note that you can only invite people to a conversation that is already a chat--you can't "promote" a one-on-one conversation to a chat.

How do I configure a chatroom?

Type /config or /configure in the conversation window.

Miscellaneous

Why can't I send a file?

There are a number of possible reasons for this.

  • If the user you're trying to send to is using the Google Talk client, it isn't possible as that client doesn't use the standard XMPP file transfers.
  • The XMPP server you're using may not support a file transfer proxy and your network setup doesn't allow direct incoming connections. In this case, you may be able to specify an alternative file transfer proxy in the "Advanced" settings of your XMPP account.
  • The file transfer proxy in use may be broken (see #5840).

Which XEPs does libpurple support?

See the SupportedXEPs page for the list.

Does Pidgin support Service Discovery or Transports?

Service discovery and transport registration are supported in Pidgin as of 2.6.0 (via the XMPP Service Discovery plugin), but not Finch.

However, using transports with Finch is possible, with the caveat that either your transport does not require registration or you have already registered using another client.

If you want to use a protocol that is supported by Pidgin natively, it is recommended to use Pidgin's own implementation rather than a Jabber transport.

Yahoo!(Y!M) Protocol

How do I get blocking someone to work?

There is a known bug in the Yahoo! protocol code present in libpurple. We've been unable to determine the exact cause or a workable code solution to the problem, but the failure seems to be most prominent when the blocking code tries to automatically remove the buddy from your list (this is required for a block on Yahoo!). It will also always fail if libpurple thinks the buddy is already blocked.

We suggest manually removing Yahoo! buddies before attempting to block them. For buddies reported as already blocked who are not in fact blocked, unblock them (in Tools->Privacy) and block them again. This works often.

Why can't I connect to Yahoo! from behind a firewall or NAT?

Your firewall or NAT is not allowing YMSG packets (packets for the Yahoo! protocol) to pass through it. You can try changing the port Pidgin attempts to connect to. Go to Tools->Edit, find your Yahoo! account, uncheck the Enabled box, then select the account and click Modify. On the Advanced tab, change the value in the Pager port field. Ports known to work are 20, 23, 25, 80, 119, 5050, 8001, and 8002. This will not work for all users, but does help many.

Why doesn't Pidgin have the official client's "Firewall with no proxy" option?

The official client's Firewall with no proxy option wraps the Yahoo! YMSG protocol in HTTP, which enables it to pass through many firewalls and NATs that filter IM traffic but not HTTP traffic. Pidgin and libpurple currently do not support this.

Can I get a list of Yahoo! chatrooms? What about localized lists?

Tools->Room List will let you list available Yahoo! chat rooms. Yahoo! has currently disabled user-created rooms. The option to create rooms still exists in Pidgin but will be non-functional until Yahoo! re-enables user-created rooms.

By default the room list shows US-localized chat rooms. To get a localized room list for another locale, you'll need to change the Chat Room Locale setting in the account editor, on the Advanced tab. Enter a country code in this field. Certain country codes no longer seem to work (most notably de). The list of known-working country codes was at last check the following:

  • aa -> Asia
  • ar -> Argentina
  • au -> Australia
  • br -> Brazil
  • ca -> Canada
  • cf -> Central African Republic
  • cn -> China
  • dk -> Denmark
  • es -> Spain
  • fr -> France
  • hk -> Hong Kong
  • in -> India
  • it -> Italy
  • kr -> Korea, Republic of
  • mx -> Mexico
  • my -> Malaysia
  • no -> Norway
  • se -> Sweden
  • sg -> Singapore
  • tw -> Taiwan
  • uk -> United Kingdom
  • us -> United States of America

If you discover any of these no longer work, or find other country codes that do work, please don't hesitate to contact the development team.

What protocol does Pidgin use to connect to Yahoo!?

Normally Pidgin uses the YMSG protocol, which is the same protocol that the official Yahoo! clients use, although Pidgin uses a slightly older version of the protocol than current official clients. If an attempt to login returns the "Invalid Password" error code, Pidgin automatically tries to log in using the "WebMessenger" method. This method still uses the YMSG protocol, but authenticates differently, and connects to a different server.

While in Web Messenger mode, several things work differently or not at all. Adding, moving, and removing buddies doesn't work, and the only available statuses are "Available" and "Invisible". In addition, the Yahoo! server seems to ignore all Yahoo! Chat related packets. For this reason, we use the YCHT protocol to join Yahoo! Chat rooms while connected using the Web Messenger method.

Why doesn't my yahoo.co.uk account work? (error code:"Invalid username")

Change your Yahoo account's Username from username@yahoo.co.uk to only username (that is, remove @yahoo.co.uk from the Usernane field).

I get a message that says "Too many failed login attempts" but I logged into the website like the message said and it still doesn't work!

This seems to happen for several different reasons, but an easy one to run into is account deactivation, particularly if you signed up for a Yahoo! account on the Yahoo! Mail site instead of the main Yahoo! site. If you don't log into Yahoo! Mail for four months, your mail account is deactivated; this seems to be at least partially related to the login failures error.

For some people, logging into any Yahoo! website is sufficient to restore the account to a working status. For others, you must log into Yahoo! Mail specifically. If that still doesn't work, try logging into other Yahoo! sites. Beyond this, there's not much we can really do, as the login server returns the error and refuses to let us continue logging into the messenger service.

MSN Protocol

Setting up MSN accounts and Connection issues

I can't connect to MSN using Pidgin 2.4.3 or earlier

These versions used to use an old version of the MSN protocol (MSNP9) which is no longer supported on the server side. If you want to use MSN with Pidgin, you will need to use 2.5.0 or any later version.

Why can't I log into MSN?

You probably did not compile Pidgin with SSL support, or the SSL plugin failed to load. The MSN protocol requires the use of SSL, which Pidgin provides by either GnuTLS or the combination of NSS and NSPR from the Mozilla project. See these notes to get SSL up and running.

Why isn't MSN in the list of protocols?

The MSN plugin won't load, but I have Mozilla NSS or GNUTLS or both!

See these notes on getting SSL up and running.

What does "MSN: S: 911 3" in the debug window mean when I can't connect?

Unhandled command '911' indicates some form of authentication error. This could be simply that your password is wrong.

Other reports of this error seem to indicate that it could be a timeout problem--if the authenticaion process takes too long to complete, the authentication fails. Slowness could be caused by a number of factors, including:

  • being on dialup
  • slow DNS resolution
  • network problems.

Please check that your configured DNS servers are correct, and are resolving hostnames reasonably quickly. On Linux these are specified in /etc/resolv.conf - At least 5 people resolved the '911' error by removing incorrect DNS servers from here.

If you are still having problems please try these tests to try to identify any potential network problems: using telnet, try connecting to

  • port 1863 on messenger.hotmail.com
  • port 443 on loginnet.passport.com
  • port 443 on login.passport.com

If any of those fail, or take a long time to connect, then this is probably not a bug in Pidgin.

How do I set my MSN Friendly Name (the name other users see)?

In the Buddy List window, go to Accounts-> your MSN account->Set Friendly Name.

Can I set my friendly name with a plugin?

No. This leads to far too much abuse of the already-abused friendly name. Stuffing such useless information as the currently playing song on your music player or a status message inside the friendly name completely defeats the purpose of the friendly name, which is to provide a more easily recognizable name than an e-mail address.

MSN Buddies

What does "Has You" in the buddy list tooltip mean?

It shows you if that MSN user has added you to his/her buddy list. "Has you: No" does not mean you can't talk to that person.

Why is "Has You" gone in 2.5.0?

This seems to be related to switching to MSNP15. For more info, see ticket #6637.

Why do I keep getting a "Buddy List Synchronization" error?

Sometimes, for a particular buddy, you may keep getting a "Buddy List Synchronization" error every time you sign in, even if you accept adding the buddy. There are two possible reasons for this problem.

The first possibility is because the buddy is on your address book, and not marked for use with messenger. Pidgin does not currently handle this case. The second possibility is that there are multiple copies of that buddy in your address book in different groups than Pidgin expects.

In order to fix this, you need to login to your account via Hotmail and edit your address book. If you use some sort of network-provided account that is affiliated with MSN, you should still be able to login for this purpose (even if you don't have an inbox).

For the first case, from the address book, edit the contact that matches, and check the box for "Use this address with Windows Live Messenger". For the second case, look for multiple copies of the buddy and remove all but the one in the group Pidgin expects. These buddies will most probably have the Quickname set to <userid part of email address>+<incrementing number>.

Conversations

Can I turn off displaying nicknames/friendly names?

No. If your buddies are using friendly names that make it difficult to distinguish them from each other, use aliases to set useful differentiating names for the buddies.

Can I turn off displaying custom smileys?

Yes. It is in the options for your MSN account. Go to Accounts->Manage, select your MSN account, click Modify, select the Advanced tab, and uncheck "Show custom smileys".

Why do some of my messages result in an error?

Your message might have been censored by Microsoft. All clients are affected as messages are being censored at the server. See #2278 and http://virtuelvis.com/archives/2006/02/microsoft-censoring-msn-messenger

Miscellaneous MSN questions

Why are file transfers so slow?

MSN file transfer support is limited to the proxied version of file transfer support in the protocol. This means that the files are sent to MSN's servers, then the server sends the data to the other user. We don't know if or when we will ever support any of the peer-to-peer file transfer methods available in the MSN protocol.

Is there a way to invite more than one person to a chat?

Yes, but this is a case where our design differs from the official clients. In the MSN world, there is no distinction between an IM session and a chat. Within libpurple and Pidgin, however, there is. If you start an IM with one user, then you cannot invite someone else to the conversation. If, however, you right-click the buddy and select Initiate Chat, then you can invite as many people to the chat as you want using Conversation->Invite. Unfortunately, Pidgin does not yet provide a convenient way to select multiple buddies at once to invite.

What does "Error reading from switchboard server" mean?

We haven't fully figured that out yet, but even Microsoft's client seems to get similar errors, although with less frequency than we do.

Gadu-Gadu (GG) Protocol

What is Gadu-Gadu?

Gadu-Gadu is an IM protocol popular in Poland. You can find more about it at www.gadu-gadu.pl (website in Polish).

I compiled Pidgin from source. Why doesn't it have Gadu-Gadu support?

We now use an external libgadu. Install your distro's libgadu-dev or libgadu-devel package and rebuild Pidgin (making sure to rerun ./configure). If your distro doesn't provide libgadu, you can download it from here. Unpack the tarball and run:

~/libgadu-1.7.0$ ./autogen.sh --prefix=/usr --disable-libgadu-openssl \
> --disable-static --enable-shared
~/libgadu-1.7.0$ make
~/libgadu-1.7.0$ su -c "make install"

Zephyr Protocol

What is Zephyr?

Zephyr is an IM protocol developed at MIT for use with Project Athena. Its features include Kerberos IV authentication and multi-level chats (aka "subscriptions"). You're probably using this because your college/employer/organization uses it as a local IM/chat system. If not, you probably don't have a server to connect to.

Other Zephyr clients (zwgc, owl, tzc) work, but Pidgin dies with "Couldn't initialize zephyr"

Your site might require the use of Kerberos 4 for authentication, though few prepackaged Pidgin binaries use Kerberos. One solution is to compile Pidgin with the --with-krb4 flag to point to the location of your Kerberos 4 devel files, usually one of /usr, /usr/local, or /usr/athena, e.g.

~/pidgin$ ./configure --with-krb4=/path/to/kerberosIV

Pidgin isn't working, but I never got any other Zephyr client working

You need to have zhm (which comes with the standard Zephyr distribution) installed, and running, and pointed at your Zephyr servers. e.g.

zhm z1.example.com z2.example.com z3.example.com

Alternatively, there might be a firewall or a NAT between you and the Zephyr servers. Zephyr generally doesn't work in an environment where incoming connections cannot be made to arbitrary UDP ports.

How do I avoid compiling Pidgin with Kerberos 4 support?

See the next question; the same trick for firewall traversal applies to avoiding building with Kerberos support.

How do I use Zephyr from behind my firewall?

You can use tzc ("Trivial Zephyr Client") and ssh to run Zephyr from a machine that is behind a firewall or NAT. First, make sure that tzc is installed and working on the remote machine. The best version of tzc to use can be found here.

Make sure that you can make a passwordless ssh connection to the remote machine and get kerberos 4 tickets. Then, click the Advanced tab in the account editor, enable "Use tzc", and set the tzc command to

/path/to/ssh username@hostname /path/to/tzc -e "%s"

Alternately, if you have tzc working on your machine, you can enable "Use tzc", and set the tzc command to

/path/to/tzc -e "%s"

Why can't I use Zephyr on Windows?

Pidgin does not support Zephyr on Windows due to upstream technical limitations. The current libzephyr library does not compile on the Windows platform and there are no known usable builds of "zhm" available for Windows. If you are a Windows user, you most likely do not have any use for Zephyr anyway.

SILC Protocol

What is SILC?

SILC is an open, security-focused, end-to-end encrypted protocol. See http://www.silcnet.org for more details.

What do I need to use the SILC protocol?

You need to install the SILC toolkit and the Pidgin SILC plugin. This plugin is generally provided as a separate package (such as a purple-silc RPM). If you're compiling yourself, see the ./configure --help for specifying the SILC includes and libs. If you're compiling an SRPM, use --with silc to build the purple-silc RPM.

In Windows, the SILC toolkit is installed with Pidgin.

Some distributions provide the SILC toolkit and include Pidgin's SILC plugin in their Pidgin package.

Novell Groupwise Messenger Protocol

Novell GroupWise Messenger is a component of Novell GroupWise see http://www.novell.com/products/groupwise

Are there any public servers?

Not really. This protocol is designed to connect to a Novell GroupWise Messenger server running on a corporate LAN. No one that we're aware of runs a public server.

I can't seem to get it to work.

Novell tells us that this protocol plugin will only work with either the GroupWise Messenger for Linux server or the GroupWise Messenger SP2 (or higher) server for NetWare and Windows. In addition, the server must be secure (SSL enabled). If you have any trouble, see the FAQ question about submitting bugs, and they will be forwarded to Novell, who have been kind enough to continue active maintenance of the protocol plugin code they provided us.

Lotus Sametime Protocol

Are there any public servers?

Apart from a demonstration server hosted by Lotus, no. This protocol is designed to connect to a Lotus Sametime server running on a corporate LAN.

Why doesn't Sametime appear in the protocols list?

Sametime support in Pidgin depends on a separate library called Meanwhile. You will need to install both the Meanwhile library and the libpurple-meanwhile package to enable Sametime support. If you are building Pidgin from source, then libpurple-meanwhile will be built automatically if you have the development headers for Meanwhile installed.

Why do I get the error "Not Authorized" when connecting?

The Sametime server to which you're attempting to connect has been configured with a white-list of acceptable clients. This error indicates that the client ID used by Pidgin (0x1700) is apparently not in that white-list, so the server is not permitting you to log in. You can cause Pidgin to masquerade as the default Sametime Connect client by setting the "Hide client identity" option in your account preferences.

Myspace IM Protocol

Why do I see "Protocol error, code 260" when my password is correct?

There are two common issues that cause this error:

  1. You may be using your "friendly name" (also sometimes called "IM name") instead of your e-mail address to log in. Make sure you are using your e-mail address for Username when setting up the account.
  2. Myspace IM restricts password lengths to a 10 character maximum. If your password is longer than 10 characters, only type the first 10. Also consider changing your password to be shorter. You can change your Myspace password at myspace.com.

What is Bonjour?

Bonjour is a serverless messaging protocol developed by Apple Inc. (Apple article on Bonjour) based on XMPP that operates only on a local network. This XMPP extension defines the protocol.

Can I use Windows Pidgin for Bonjour?

As of version 2.0.2, Pidgin for Windows supports Bonjour. You must install Apple's Bonjour Print Services for Windows to use this functionality.

MXit

There are no known issues with MXit. Any issues that arise from MXit should be directed to MXit, as they provide and maintain that protocol plugin.

Facebook Chat

Facebook droped XMPP on 30.04.2014

Other Protocols

Why does Pidgin not support CyanChat, MS LCS, NateOn, Netsoul, Paltalk, Rediffbol, Skype, Steam, Teamspeak, Tlen.pl, WinMX, Xfire or any other protocol?

It is a lot of work to implement and maintain support for an additional protocol. As Pidgin developers are volunteers who work for Pidgin during their spare time, they have only limited time which means that they can only support a limited number of protocols. If you are willing and able to implement and maintain a protocol that you're using, you're welcome to do so.

You can find unsupported third-party plugins for CyanChat, MS Communicator, NateOn, Netsoul, Rediffbol, Tlen.pl, WinMX and Xfire here.

Last modified 10 months ago Last modified on 10/06/15 15:41:54
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