Last Monday the developers of Pidgin, the open source multi-platform instant message client formerly known as Gaim) release version 2.5.0 for Windows, Linux and Unix. The changelog should have something for just about everyone.
- Ability to create custom smileys (currently only the MSN protocol utilizes the feature). (Thanks to Mauro Sérgio Ferreira Brasil, Marcus Lundblad, Jorge Villaseñor and other contributors)
- Add a configure option, –with-system-ssl-certs to allow packagers to specify a system-wide SSL CA certificates directory. When set, we don’t install our SSL CA certs, so it’s important that the libpurple package depend on the CA certificates.
- Add SSL Certificates support to the NSS SSL plugin. (Thanks to Lou Cipher)
- Fix a bug that caused the UI to not refresh and caused the client to use 99% CPU when an XMPP account lost its connection to the server.
- Possibly fix a bug where some clients could get into a state where they moved a buddy back and forth between two groups in an endless loop.
- /ctcp command (Vladislav Guberinić)
- Allow for auto-detection of incoming UTF-8 formatted text on accounts which are configured to use some other encoding.
- Update MSN support to protocol 15 (Elliott Sales de Andrade, Jorge Villaseñor, Mike Ruprecht, Carlos Silva, Ma Yuan, Daniel Ljungborg and others)
- Personal messages are now supported. They are treated as status messages.
- Offline IM is now supported.
- Aliasing is now supported server-side.
- Buddies are now emblemed. Bots and web clients should now be distinguished.
- Update smiley set for non-faces.
- Failing to update a buddy icon when the buddy has gone offline no longer crashes.
- Custom smileys received in a chat no longer go to a new window.
- Processing is no longer completely frozen after the servers block a message because it contains (what they consider) inappropriate text.
- Custom buddy icons can now be added to and removed from buddy list entries via the buddy list entry right-click menu.
- Resize large incoming custom smileys to a maximum of 96px on either side.
- Offer to add new buddies into the same contact as existing buddies in the same group if the alias given is the same.
- Minor smiley style update.
- Group and Chat buddy list entries can now be given custom buddy icons.
- Added “Invite…” menu to chats.
- Added “View All Logs” menu in the buddylist to display a list of all IM logs.
- Added ‘/msgcolor’ command to change colors of different classes of messages in a conversation. See ‘/help msgcolor’ for details.
- Added tab-completion for commands in conversation windows.
- Windows-specific changes
- Don’t install the GSSAPI SASL plugin on NT4 to avoid an error popup.
- Use the Kerberos for Windows libraries installed on the system (if present) instead of including enough to load the plugin (Kfw still needed to be installed for it to actually work before this change).
- Upgrade to Perl 5.10 (System Perl runtime must be upgraded for Perl plugins to continue to work).
- Upgrade SILC to use the 1.1.7 toolkit
Pidgin 2.5 will be included in Ubuntu Intrepid, but some of us won’t want to wait that long to start using it. Luckily we won’t have to wait, or compile the source code, as GetDeb already has Debian packages (.debs) you can use to download.
First you will want to uninstall Pidgin from your system to ensure there won’t be any conflicts when you start installing the new version. You will want to make sure you remove pidgin, pidgin-data, as well as libpurple before doing anything else.
Now go to GetDeb and download the three packages for Pidgin 2.5.0: pidgin, pidgin-data, and libpurple. Also make sure you have the right packages, because they’re available in not only a 32-bit version but also a 64-bit version. (Unfortunately they’re only available for Ubuntu Hardy.) Save them to someplace like your desktop, but make sure there are no other .debs in the directory. Once you’ve downloaded all three packages, open a Terminal and go to the directory you saved them to. Then run this command
sudo dpkg -i *
You will, of course, have to enter your admin password, but once that’s finished you will be able to launch Pidgin the same way you’ve always launched it and you’ll have Pidgin 2.5.0 with all of your existing data and settings intact. Just remember, if you’ve installed the Pidgin iChat Theme from the Mac4Lin Transformation Pack you’ll need to reinstall the theme to be able to use it again. Hopefully one of these days the Pidgin devs will support having multiple themes installed so we can stop having to reinstall a theme every time we update our IM client.