University of Vermont

Information Technology

Install and Configure Pidgin Instant Messenger Client for Windows

Installing Pidgin 2.5.0 and later

Note: For domain-joined computers, it's recommended to use the Software Center (Start > Microsoft System Center > Software Center) to install Pidgin with a single click. Computers purchased and imaged through the Techstore in the Bookstore will come with Pidgin pre-installed. In these cases, skip to Configuring Pidgin for use with UVM's Chat Services
  1. Download the latest version of Pidgin from
  2. Save the file to a convenient location such as the Desktop.
  3. If you have a previous version of Pidgin installed, you MUST exit the application before moving to the next step or installation will fail.
  4. Double click on installer file you just downloaded.
  5. An command line window will open which will spew out some ugly information about what the installer is doing. Wait for the process to complete and for this windows to close.
  6. If you have a previous version installed, you may be prompted to uninstall existing versions of GNU ASpell and ASpell English Dictionaries. This is safe to allow.
  7. Double-click the “Pidgin” icon on your desktop to launch the application.

Configure Pidgin for UVM's Chat Services (Jabber Server)

  1. Find the shortcut for Pidgin (in Start > Programs or on desktop) and start Pidgin.
  2. If you have not configured any Pidgin accounts yet (or GAIM accounts from a previous installation), the account setup dialog will pop up automatically. If this is the case, proceed to the steps below. If you have at least one account already configured, you will need to select the “Accounts” menu, then “Add/Edit”. In both cases, after getting into the Accounts dialog, Click Add.
  3. Select XMPP from Protocol drop-down.
  4. Enter your UVM NetID in the Screen Name field.
  5. Enter in the Domain field.
  6. Leave the Resource field as is, or change it to a value to suit your disposition (“Pidgin” is the default, but you can enter “Home”, “Office”, “Mobile”, etc.).
  7. In the Password field you may enter your UVM NetID password.
  8. Enter an alias (i.e. “Jim Bob”, “Jimmy Joe Jim Bob”, etc.) for yourself in the “Local alias” field if desired.
  9. We do not recommend checking “Remember Password” for security reasons. Please Note that if you check this box, Pidgin will save your passwords in plain text, making password theft trivial for anyone with physical access to your computer.
  10. Click on “Advanced” tab.
  11. Port number is 5222 (should be default).
  12. Check the “Require SSL/TLS” box to ensure the highest level of security possible for you chat sessions.
  13. Make sure that “Allow plaintext auth over unencrypted streams” is deselected (should be the default).
  14. Click Save.

Configure Pidgin for AOL Instant Messenger (AIM)

If you have AIM buddies, you will want to configure Pidgin to communicate with them instead of running the AIM client. Pidgin also supports the protocols for ICQ, IRC, MSN, Yahoo and others.

  1. Find the shortcut for Pidgin (in Start/Programs or on desktop) and start the program.
  2. Select Accounts. Click Add/Edit.
  3. Click “Add”
  4. Select AIM/ICQ from Protocol drop-down (should be default).
  5. Enter your AIM screen name in the Screen Name field.
  6. Enter your AIM password in the Password field.
  7. Enter an alias for yourself in the Alias field if desired.
  8. Check “Auto Login” if desired (recommended).
  9. If you have an AOL email account, you can select “New mail notifications”.
  10. If you want to use a Buddy Icon, select Open and navigate to the desired icon and select it. Use the Remove button to get rid of a Buddy Icon.
  11. The “Show more options” is not necessary, as it defaults to the main AOL Instant Messenger server and settings.
  12. Click Save.
  13. If you selected Auto Login, you will be connected immediately. If not, you will need to check the Online box next to the AIM account line.

Configure Pidgin Options

  1. Make sure Pidgin is running.
  2. Select Tools/Preferences.
  3. Select Logging.
    • “Log all instant messages” is recommended for recalling conversation details.
  4. Select Tools/Plugins.
  5. New menu items are created below Plugins for each selected plugin.
    • Change plugin options as desired.
    • PidgWin Plugin is recommended.
      • System Tray Icon is recommended
      • Deselect “Flash Window when messages are received” to turn off the flashing option if you find it annoying.
    • Release Notification plugin is recommended
  6. Click Close.

Adding Buddies to Pidgin

  1. Make sure Pidgin is running.
  2. Select Buddies menu.
  3. Select Add Buddy.
  4. Select Account that you are adding the buddy for (Jabber or AIM if you configured it).
  5. Enter the Screen Name of the buddy.
    • If for UVM Jabber, format is
    • If for AIM, use their normal AIM screen name
  6. Enter an Alias for the buddy if desired (i.e. Bud is easier to read in your buddy list than the Jabber format above).
  7. Enter the Group name you want to buddy to appear under in your Buddy List.
    • If you don’t have any groups set up yet, go to the Buddies menu after and click on Add Group, then move the Buddy to the group.
  8. Click Add.
  9. Jabber buddies will be notified that you wish to subscribe with them. You will not be able to converse with them until they authorize the subscription. Likewise, you will be notified if someone tries to subscribe with you first. When you hover your cursor over a Jabber buddy, you will be shown the status of your subscription with that buddy. A status of “Both” means you are all set and you can both see each other. Otherwise, you will probably see “None (To pending)” until the other person authorizes the subscription request. If the status is “None (From pending)” [not sure, but it should be something like this], then you should be able to right-click on their buddy name and select Authorize.
  10. You may want to hide offline buddies to un-clutter your list when it grows. Select the Buddies menu and de-select “Show Offline Buddies” .

Last modified September 01 2016 12:04 PM

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