Pidgin is a great Open Source messaging client that support multiple services that works on Windows, Mac, and Linux. However, one of the services that is missing is Skype. Today we show you how to add Skype to Pidgin.
For this example we’ll be installing the Skype4Pidgin Plugin on Windows 7, but the plugin works with Mac, and Linux as well.
1. If you don’t have it already, download and install the Pidgin IM client. Installation is easy, just follow the defaults. One thing to pay attention to when installing Pidgin…if you want spellcheck included…on the Choose Components screen, select your language under Spellchecking Support.
2. You’ll need to install Skype if you don’t have it already. Make sure to pay attention to the Skype installer and uncheck any extra software it tries to install if you don’t want it.
3. Pidgin is great because it supports almost every IM service out there…but not Skype.
4. To add Skype to Pidgin, first make sure you’re closed out of it, then install the Skype API Plugin for Pidgin by Eion Robb. It also works for Adium for Mac too. The plug-in is free and open source under the GNU Public License.
5. After you have everything installed, open Pidgin, click Accounts, then Manage Accounts.
6. In the screen that comes up click the Add button.
7. Now when you click the Protocol dropdown list, you’ll see Skype is included in the list.
8. Enter in your Skype Username…a local alias if you want, then click Add.
9. For this plugin to work, you need to have Skype running at the same time. Click the Advanced tab and make sure Auto-start Skype if not running is checked. This will save you the step of having to launch it manually.
9. A dialog will open asking if you want to allow Pidgin access to Skype, click the Allow Access button.
10. Then a screen comes up asking if you want to confirm silent mode and gives you the details of confirming it. This setting is up to you, and if you don’t want to see it every time you launch Pidgin check Do not ask me again.
11. Now you can IM with your Skype contacts through Pidgin…very cool! When you receive an IM through Skype, you’ll still get the normal notification sound and flashing Skype icon on your Taskbar if you have it enabled.
Even though Skype needs to be running at the same time as Pidgin, this makes it easier to have all of your IM conversations in one client. Much easier than constantly switching between applications.