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Pidgin is an easy to use and free chat client that supports AIM, Google Talk, ICQ, IRC, XMPP, and more chat networks all at once.


USE flags

USE flags for net-im/pidgin GTK Instant Messenger client

aqua Include support for the Mac OS X Aqua (Carbon/Cocoa) GUI
dbus Enable dbus support for anything that needs it (gpsd, gnomemeeting, etc)
debug Enable extra debug codepaths, like asserts and extra output. If you want to get meaningful backtraces see
doc Add extra documentation (API, Javadoc, etc). It is recommended to enable per package instead of globally
eds Enable support for Evolution-Data-Server (EDS)
gadu Enable Gadu Gadu protocol support
gnutls Prefer net-libs/gnutls as SSL/TLS provider (ineffective with USE=-ssl)
groupwise Enable Novell Groupwise protocol support
gstreamer Enables voice and video sessions
gtk Builds Pidgin, the GTK+ interface
gui Enable support for a graphical user interface
idn Enable support for Internationalized Domain Names
meanwhile Enable meanwhile support for Sametime protocol
ncurses Build finch, console interface
networkmanager Enable net-misc/networkmanager support
nls Add Native Language Support (using gettext - GNU locale utilities)
perl Add optional support/bindings for the Perl language
pie Build programs as Position Independent Executables (a security hardening technique)
prediction Enable Contact Availability Prediction plugin
python Build libgnt (GLib Ncurses Toolkit used by finch) with python scripting support
sasl Add support for the Simple Authentication and Security Layer
spell Add dictionary support
tcl Add support the Tcl language
test Enable dependencies and/or preparations necessary to run tests (usually controlled by FEATURES=test but can be toggled independently)
tk Add support for Tk GUI toolkit
v4l Enable support for video4linux (using linux-headers or userspace libv4l libraries)
xscreensaver Use X screensaver protocol extension to monitor idle/active status based on mouse/keyboard events
zephyr Enable Zephyr protocol support
zeroconf Support for DNS Service Discovery (DNS-SD)


root #emerge --ask net-im/pidgin


Pidgin's guide is a complete guide through the process of configuring every aspect of pidgin.

Strongly consider Pidgin's configuration files are saved in plain text, so it is recommendable to use unique passwords for the accounts or always connect without saving the password. app-admin/pass is one utility (created by Jason A. Donenfeld (zx2c4) ) that can generate unique passwords. Consider viewing the Password management tools article for more information.


Pidgin comes with a GUI based on GTK that lets you interact with different protocols and stay connected to different servers as described in the Pidgin's guide


Pidgin has a community of third-party developed plugins. You can find out more on the third party plugins at the official wiki page.



root #emerge --ask --depclean --verbose net-im/pidgin

Configuration and logs

After unmerging, for a full clean-up, be sure to remove old logs and individual user configuration files from their default location in each pidgin user's home directory:

user $rm -rf ~/.purple

See also

  • Irssi — a powerful text-mode IRC client for connecting to internet relay chat (IRC) networks.
  • WeeChat — a light, extensible, actively maintained, well documented, highly featured text-mode IRC client.

External resources