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Goodbye Adium: Pidgin on Mac OS X… with native GTK!

with 99 comments

So you’re on Mac OS X, and want to use Pidgin on it.

First: Why not use Adium? Adium is a Free multi-protocol IM client for Mac OS X that uses libpurple, the IM library that was developed as part of Pidgin. It has several popular features such as message styles, and uses the Cocoa API native to Mac OS X, and all round looks pretty. Being a native Cocoa application, it is more well-integrated with the Mac desktop than a GTK-using application like Pidgin can ever be.

On the other hand, if you, like me, have tried Adium and have reasons for finding it unusable, then it is possible to install Pidgin on OS X too. There are two ways of doing this:
[Edit: Note that this post is from 2007. Probably a lot has changed since then.]

  1. Install Pidgin to run inside X11. Any default distribution of Pidgin should build fine on this, as long as you have all the dependencies installed. However, using an X11 app on OS X is really like entering another universe entirely… it’s like having two entirely disjoint OSes that just happen to run simultaneously. It is cumbersome, and I would not recommend it unless you are already doing much of your work inside X11 for some reason.
  2. Install Pidgin to run on the Mac desktop directly (without X11), using native GTK+ for Mac OS X and some minor modifications to Pidgin. This is very simple to do and requires only one step, described below.

Pidgin welcome dialogAdding an account


Installing Pidgin on Mac OS X is now as simple as installing any other Mac OS X application, thanks to a train of effort from many people, starting with Anders Hasselqvist (“nevil”) for writing the patch with the gtkstatusicon implementation, Thomas Reifferscheid (reiffert) for including it on MacPorts, and finally Albert Zeyer for building it with Xcode and the GTK framework and making a .app out of it. (And of course, the Pidgin developers for writing Pidgin, and Richard Hult from Imendio AB for GTK+OSX. And maybe I can take a little credit for small improvements here and there, and nagging people into making certain changes :-))

One-step simple way: All you have to do is download the .dmg file from pidgin-macosx on Sourceforge, and double click on the Pidgin application. That’s all!

If you’re using MacPorts: For something which has had fewer changes from the original Pidgin, you can install it through MacPorts:
Step 0: Install MacPorts, if you haven’t got it already.
Step 1:

sudo port install pidgin +quartz +no_x11

(Note: The pidgin-macosx from Sourceforge may be at a older version than the MacPorts version. It also may have a few bugs. If you would like to help debug them, checkout the project from svn—svn checkout I think—and/or file bugs/patches at the bug tracker.)

If you plan to script Pidgin using D-Bus, you could also do, before Step 1: sudo port install dbus-python25

— The end —

Old instructions follow, mainly because I’m too lazy to delete them, but also in case someone does not want to use MacPorts or something:

Get GTK+ OS X:
[Follow the build instructions]:

svn co jhbuild
cd jhbuild
make -f Makefile.plain install

Note that this installs jhbuild in ~/bin. It is possible to change this, but I remember having run into trouble during an earlier attempt doing so, so I didn’t touch anything this time.

Download this file, and save it as ~/.jhbuildrc. Then, make sure ~/bin is in your $PATH, and:

jhbuild bootstrap
jhbuild build
jhbuild build meta-gtk-osx-core meta-gtk-osx-python meta-gtk-osx-themes gossip

Of course, most of that is redundant, but I had disk space to spare, and pygtk to try out. I suspect I built a couple of modules more than once; feel free to remove meta-gtk-osx-core from the second build command, for example.

In my case, everything went fine (except for one minor error, where I picked “ignore error and continue” from the options it gave).

You should now have “GTK+ Mac OS X” installed. To test this, try the following:

jhbuild run /opt/gtk/bin/pygtk-demo

All should work. Wow, GTK on the Mac, natively… thanks, folks who brought us Gtk+ for Mac OS X!

Now for pidgin.

Get the Pidgin source, and get the patch from this ticket [direct link], and compile Pidgin with

jhbuild run ./configure --prefix=$HOME/.local --without-x --enable-gtkstatusicon --disable-gestures
jhbuild run make
jhbuild run make install

Of course, the “–prefix” is optional; it will install Pidgin in /usr/local/bin otherwise.

[Extra information for D-Bus: If you have D-Bus through Fink and want to use it, note that configure uses

pkg-config --libs "dbus-1 >= 0.35 dbus-glib-1 >= 0.35"

for checking for D-Bus. Make sure that works from within jhbuild shell (even if it works in your shell). You might want jhbuild buildone dbus and jhbuild buildone dbus-glib before doing configure etc.]

Now you can just run Pidgin directly (as ~/.local/bin/pidgin), and it works fine! It even has the tray icon!
Thanks, nevil, for making that patch!

Things that can be improved:

  • Fonts suck. To fix this, put
    gtk-theme-name = "Raleigh"
    gtk-font-name = "Lucida Grande 12"

    in your ~/.gtkrc. (I also have gtk-key-theme-name = "Emacs" there.)

  • Some exotic unicode characters aren’t displayed properly.
  • There is a way to integrate Pidgin with an OSX menubar. It would be cool if someone did this.
  • Pidgin crashes when I try to drag-and-drop buddies into contacts. You can use Finch for this :)
  • Copying is a bit strange — I use Command-C in the other app to copy, and Ctrl-V in Pidgin to paste. It works, though!
  • Trying to copy from Pidgin crashes it, if you’re running Quicksilver’s Clipboard history module, apparently. (Not with Jumpcut, though.) I can, however select the text and drag it into other applications (or drag it into one and copy from there into the clipboard).

Good luck, and tell me how this works for you!

Written by S

Fri, 2007-12-07 at 07:57:07

Posted in compknow

Tagged with , , , , , , ,

99 Responses

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  1. Hi, thanks for the guida, I’m trying installing it, but i can’t install jhbuild, can you explain it please?

    No need to use jhbuild any more; see updated instructions. — S


    Wed, 2008-01-02 at 01:18:21

  2. Hi! I didn’t understand how to apply the patch…without applying it, I got a lot of errors on make about eggtrayicon.c.

    Thank you in advance…

    To apply the patch, do patch -p0 < filename.diff in the source directory. You might have to change p0 to p1 or p2, or descend/ascend to a different directory level, just try out a few things and read man patch if you’re stuck. –S


    Tue, 2008-02-19 at 12:31:08

  3. So, what bug you about Adium? Lack of IRC?


    Thu, 2008-02-21 at 20:41:59

  4. Oh, not IRC, but lots of things —
    * No easy way to change status messages (You have to open a menu, then Option-Click on a status, then type, then click.)
    * Away and DND buddies all shown with the same status icons, as if the statuses are even related
    * Status messages called “Away messages”
    * Dock icon shows “Away” when I’m only set to busy.
    * Chokes on perfectly valid links
    * Broken behaviour in many other ways

    Basically it seems to be an AIM client, mapping all protocols’ features to whatever subset and whatever form AIM does. (I don’t know, because I have never used AIM.) “Adium” even has “A.i.m” in its name ;)

    It is not a true multiprotocol client and does not support the way I use IM. There was also something about its logging format that was troublesome…


    Thu, 2008-02-21 at 22:41:46

  5. Hi shreevatsa…when trying:
    patch -p0 < ../gtkstatusicon.3.diff
    into pidgin’s source folder…I get this:

    patching file pidgin/gtkdocklet-gtk.c
    patching file
    Hunk #4 succeeded at 2319 (offset 35 lines).
    patching file pidgin/
    Hunk #3 succeeded at 119 with fuzz 2 (offset -1 lines).
    patching file pidgin/gtkdocklet-x11.c
    Hunk #1 succeeded at 313 (offset -1 lines).
    patching file pidgin/gtkdocklet.c
    Hunk #1 FAILED at 62.
    1 out of 3 hunks FAILED — saving rejects to file pidgin/gtkdocklet.c.rej
    patching file pidgin/gtkdocklet.h
    patching file pidgin/pidginstock.c
    patching file pidgin/win32/gtkdocklet-win32.c

    What’s wrong?

    Oh, try the gtkstatuscion.2.diff instead. I think that should work against Pidgin 2.3.1 –S


    Thu, 2008-02-21 at 23:57:48

  6. Thanks!!! It works!! :)
    I also patched it for msnp14…:D


    Sat, 2008-02-23 at 11:15:01

  7. […] il tutorial…per l’installazione ho unito due guide: Pidgin on Mac OS X Natively by Shreevatsa Pidgin e msnp14 by […]

  8. I was able to install the quartz no_x11 variant with port, but when I run pidgin it still runs inside the X server. Is there something special I need to get to run outside X?


    You need to build Pidgin with the +quartz +no_x11 variant too. If it is starting inside the X server, it sounds like it was not built to use the for-quartz GTK+ libraries.

    Jeff Laughlin

    Sat, 2008-02-23 at 20:06:52

  9. Hey, I really want Pidgin on Leopard, but I haven’t had much luck. I installed MacPorts, but when I type in:

    $ sudo port install pidgin +quartz +no_x11

    It says:

    Error: Unable to execute port: invalid command name “configure.ccache”

    Could you please explain to me what that means, and how I can fix it? Thank you!

    Strange. Try again, or ask the MacPorts people. You might also try installing ccache (sudo port install ccache), but if your Macports is broken that might not work. –S


    Tue, 2008-02-26 at 02:51:05

  10. Hi, installed Pidgin, Macports thinks it’s installed, but there’s no app, and it opens X11 when typing pidgin into terminal, please advise…

    Did you install it with +quartz +no_x11? The default variant is the X11 one. Also you might have to uninstall the gtk2 (and its dependencies, pango and cairo) if they were installed with the X11 variant. –S


    Tue, 2008-03-04 at 20:52:26

  11. Hi!

    Thanks for sharing. It was quite simple to install Pidgin on MacOS X! Now I’m running Pidgin instead of AdiumX and enjoying so much!


    Sun, 2008-03-23 at 14:21:52

  12. You are the man. Thanks for publishing. Perhaps you have looked into how it’d be possible to get a .app launcher and a decent dock icon made for pidgin?


    Sun, 2008-03-30 at 11:55:46

  13. Actually, yes (reiffert and I looked into it). The dock icon can be arranged already, and it is even possible to make it have a menubar, sort of… but it is buggy as of now, and to make a .app, the directory where Pidgin looks for icons needs to be made non-constant. Feel free to take it and work on it :-)


    Sun, 2008-03-30 at 12:25:35

  14. Thanks for the directions, I successfully installed pidgin using your first “simple” method above (skipping the old instructions).
    I can run the app by typing /opt/local/bin/pidgin at the command prompt, but is there any way to have a dock icon to launch it? I think post #13 touches on that but I have no idea what it says….

    Reply: That was for turning it into a proper .app bundle which will run from anywhere, etc. To have a dock icon to launch it, you can do any of the following:
    * Simply start pidgin, something should appear in the dock, and then you can ctrl-click on that icon and choose “Keep in dock”. [The dock icon is rather nondescript and it starts a terminal window when you click on it, which remains till Pidgin is quit (or till you close it yourself).]
    * You can put “exec /opt/local/bin/pidgin” in a file, rename it something.command, change that file’s icon, then drag that file to the dock (“your” part of it, the part that contains the Trash icon). This still opens the terminal window and leaves it lying around. (There is some trick involving making the terminal window as small as possible and saving it, to make it less annoying, but I don’t remember it now.)
    * You might be able to use Platypus or something.
    Anyway, I usually have a terminal window open at all times, so I’m not going to bother about it :-)


    Mon, 2008-03-31 at 14:31:51

  15. Ah, perfect, thx!


    Mon, 2008-03-31 at 18:17:51

  16. did anyone else notice the hovering yellow popups with buddy info and such immediately disappear? quartz gtk problem of some sort?


    Tue, 2008-04-08 at 21:33:42

  17. how about what’s the easiest way to get macports to run pidgin 2.4.1 instead


    Tue, 2008-04-08 at 21:55:55

  18. Everything worked well, except the fonts are unreadable

    I think related to this error?

    (pidgin:58146): Pango-WARNING **: shaping failure, expect ugly output. shape-engine=’BasicEngineFc’, font=’Bitstream Vera Sans 10′, text=’Modify’


    Mon, 2008-05-05 at 22:35:48

  19. Yes, GTK+ on MacPorts seems to have broken recently… I have posted to the MacPorts mailing list and am also trying to figure it out. If you find a fix, please do post.


    Mon, 2008-05-05 at 23:31:58

  20. I’ve had no luck, I did read on one forum that you can install an older version of pango and it’ll work, but I cant figure out how to do that with macports

    I wish there was a better export/import between IM clients, I’ve got many years worth of gaim/pidgin logs I don’t want to loose


    Wed, 2008-05-07 at 14:36:27

  21. well it’s a pain but I got it working

    you need to uninstall -f cairo pango gtk2 pidgin

    you need to download this file, cario 1.4.12

    and go into the folder you place it, and do port install +quarts +no_x11

    then do a normal port install on pango gtk2 and pidgin

    the problem is cario, you need to use 1.4.12 and build pango, gtk2, and pidgin off of that

    dont let port auto update, I believe it’ll install the newest cario over the one you have, probably ok unless you rebuild gtk2 or pidgin though


    Wed, 2008-05-14 at 02:09:51

  22. No IRC and poor support of Jabber chat rooms are my main complaints about Adium. Sexy, yes, but severely lacking in features.


    Tue, 2008-05-27 at 14:09:19

  23. I got the “expect ugly font” message when I first installed it, too.
    The problem was cairo; I had already installed it “normally” (with X11 support). I did the following to fix that:

    > sudo port uninstall pidgin gtk2 pango cairo
    > sudo port install cairo +no_x11
    > sudo port install pango +no_x11
    > sudo port install gtk2 +no_x11
    > sudo port install pidgin +quartz +no_x11

    Note that you may have to uninstall dependents, too. Run
    > port dependents pidgin gtk2 pango cairo
    to find other packages to uninstall.

    I did not have to use cairo 1.4.12, like matt did; I used the latest one (1.6.4).

    I use Adium, and find it sufficient for my daily IM-ing needs (sorry S!); I’m just starting to get into SILC and want to play with pidgin and SILC.


    Tue, 2008-07-01 at 20:27:17

  24. piding is already at 2.4.3 and 2.3.1 does not run reliably for me (i.e. crashes in the middle of everything). any ideas whats keeping the port maintainer from updating?


    Sun, 2008-07-06 at 11:08:34

  25. Help! can’t build error
    ---> Attempting to fetch libxml2-2.6.32.tar.gz from
    ---> Verifying checksum(s) for libxml2
    ---> Extracting libxml2
    ---> Configuring libxml2
    Error: Target org.macports.configure returned: autoconf failure: shell command " cd "/opt/local/var/macports/build/_opt_local_var_macports_sources_rsync.macports.org_release_ports_textproc_libxml2/work/libxml2-2.6.32" && autoreconf " returned error 1
    Command output: warning: macro `AM_PROG_LIBTOOL' not found in library error: possibly undefined macro: AC_LIBTOOL_WIN32_DLL
    If this token and others are legitimate, please use m4_pattern_allow.
    See the Autoconf documentation. error: possibly undefined macro: AM_PROG_LIBTOOL
    autoreconf: /opt/local/bin/autoconf failed with exit status: 1

    Error: The following dependencies failed to build: gtk2 shared-mime-info libxml2 p5-xml-parser tiff intltool gnome-common libao libtool nspr nss
    Error: Status 1 encountered during processing.

    Any ideas?


    Thu, 2008-07-10 at 17:39:08

  26. @LK14: Personal prejudice, possibly ;) File a ticket on the MacPorts Trac if there isn’t one already. It’s actually rather easy to update the portfile to reflect the new version, someone can do it…

    @Anonymous: Do you have the XCode tools installed? Try “port clean pidgin” and try again, maybe. Else, file a bug.


    Thu, 2008-07-10 at 18:21:38

  27. Nevermind figured it out (with help). Had to install libtool so that libxml2 would install.


    Thu, 2008-07-10 at 18:49:36

  28. @26 Shreevatsa, filing a bug: very doubtful it’ll help much, since they haven’t made any direct effort for Mac OS X so far. i just haven’t had the energy to do it (file ticket) regardless, so far. perhaps i will, one of these days. the need is there for sure.

    new version: updating the portfile – not that easy. those custom menubar icon patches dont compile out of the box with 2.4.1, i tried (and i run plenty gentoo and my own overlay, if you know what those means). it again takes some extra energy to start debugging all of that and i just dont got it right now. perhaps i will, one of these days. the need is there for sure.



    Fri, 2008-07-11 at 06:10:43

  29. When I try to install pidgin, I get an error that it can’t find msgfmt. As the following output shows, msgfmt is there, and I have an envirnoment variable set to MSGFMT to point to it. What do I do now?

    ./configure: line 20032: AM_GLIB_GNU_GETTEXT: command not found
    configure: error:

    The msgfmt command is required to build libpurple. If it is installed
    on your system, ensure that it is in your path. If it is not, install
    GNU gettext to continue.

    If you have msgfmt installed, but for some reason this error message
    is still displayed, you have encountered what appears to be a bug in
    third-party configure macros. Try setting the MSGFMT environment
    variable to the absolute path to your msgfmt binary and trying
    configure again, like this:

    MSGFMT=/path/to/msgfmt ./configure …

    Error: Status 1 encountered during processing.
    admins-macbook:pidgin-2.4.3 admin$ echo $MSGFMT
    admins-macbook:pidgin-2.4.3 admin$ ls -l /opt/local/bin/msgfmt
    -rwxr-xr-x 2 root admin 68168 Jul 16 23:33 /opt/local/bin/msgfmt
    admins-macbook:pidgin-2.4.3 admin$


    Thu, 2008-07-17 at 05:18:17

  30. OK, I went into po.Makefile and edited the file so that it read:
    GMSGFMT = /opt/local/bin/msgfmt
    MSGFMT = /opt/local/bin/msgfmt

    Now I get:
    checking for the %z format string in strftime()… yes
    ./configure: line 23124: syntax error near unexpected token `GLIB,’
    ./configure: line 23124: `PKG_CHECK_MODULES(GLIB, glib-2.0 >= 2.0.0 gobject-2.0 gmodule-2.0 gthread-2.0, ,’


    Thu, 2008-07-17 at 05:35:38

  31. I was able to install w/o problems. However, when i launch the app i’m finding that it crashes very often. Anyone having a similar experience or have any suggestions?


    Wed, 2008-07-30 at 20:07:14

  32. Is there a pattern to when it crashes? For example, does it crash when you try to copy something? Or when you try to drag and drop buddies? If you can find a pattern and make the crash reproducible, perhaps you can report to either MacPorts, Pidgin or GTK+OSX.


    Wed, 2008-07-30 at 21:53:14

  33. it crashes 100% when you hover mouse over an URL link and pidgin tries to display the tooltip.

    Process: pidgin [3333]
    Path: /opt/local/bin/pidgin
    Identifier: pidgin
    Version: ??? (???)
    Code Type: X86 (Native)
    Parent Process: launchd [1]

    Date/Time: 2008-07-28 22:49:20.357 +0300
    OS Version: Mac OS X 10.5.4 (9E17)
    Report Version: 6

    Exception Type: EXC_BAD_ACCESS (SIGBUS)
    Exception Codes: KERN_PROTECTION_FAILURE at 0x000000000000000c
    Crashed Thread: 0

    Thread 0 Crashed:
    0 libgdk-quartz-2.0.0.dylib 0x00114cc0 _gdk_quartz_events_trigger_crossing_events + 144
    1 libgdk-quartz-2.0.0.dylib 0x00120ab1 show_window_internal + 305
    2 libgtk-quartz-2.0.0.dylib 0x00659405 gtk_window_map + 229
    3 libgobject-2.0.0.dylib 0x009c98e6 g_closure_invoke + 534
    4 libgobject-2.0.0.dylib 0x009dbbd7 signal_emit_unlocked_R + 951
    5 libgobject-2.0.0.dylib 0x009dd6dd g_signal_emit_valist + 1821
    6 libgobject-2.0.0.dylib 0x009ddd59 g_signal_emit + 41
    7 libgtk-quartz-2.0.0.dylib 0x0064c590 gtk_widget_map + 112
    8 libgtk-quartz-2.0.0.dylib 0x0065bb50 gtk_window_show + 80
    9 libgobject-2.0.0.dylib 0x009c98e6 g_closure_invoke + 534
    10 libgobject-2.0.0.dylib 0x009dbbd7 signal_emit_unlocked_R + 951
    11 libgobject-2.0.0.dylib 0x009dd6dd g_signal_emit_valist + 1821
    12 libgobject-2.0.0.dylib 0x009ddd59 g_signal_emit + 41
    13 libgtk-quartz-2.0.0.dylib 0x0064cec8 gtk_widget_show + 168
    14 pidgin 0x0004282a gtk_imhtml_tip + 874
    15 libglib-2.0.0.dylib 0x00a3d691 g_timeout_dispatch + 33
    16 libglib-2.0.0.dylib 0x00a3b43b g_main_context_dispatch + 587
    17 libglib-2.0.0.dylib 0x00a3f6fe g_main_context_iterate + 1198
    18 libglib-2.0.0.dylib 0x00a3fa67 g_main_loop_run + 455
    19 libgtk-quartz-2.0.0.dylib 0x005080e1 gtk_main + 177
    20 pidgin 0x00057ee5 main + 2805
    21 pidgin 0x00002306 start + 54


    Thu, 2008-07-31 at 07:47:39

  34. this is at least in IRC module, not 100% sure about others right now!


    Thu, 2008-07-31 at 07:48:16

  35. Please leave detailed bug reports on, not here :)


    Thu, 2008-07-31 at 14:11:42

  36. OSX is able to run X application but I wouldn’t recommend it’s too much work, and I personally can’t stand it. I am running Linux — Kubuntu *Debian Base* on my laptop, and pretty happy at that. I like many bought mac for osx use only :)

    After all; Mac are good for OSX only for everything else use PC.

    Jesse Dorland

    Tue, 2008-08-19 at 23:41:06

  37. pidgin 2.4.3 is in the port tree and works fine. tooltip crash has ben fixed, although the tooltip simply flickers for me now, not showing correctly either. but at least it doesnt crash pidgin anymore.

    re: linux, virtualbox on os x running gentoo and using shared folders is pretty amazing stuff.


    Wed, 2008-08-20 at 00:11:58

  38. Anyone know how to get characters that need 2 strokes like á, í, é etc. working ? Pidgin is displaying ´a…


    Fri, 2008-08-29 at 14:29:27

  39. […] очередь для Unix-подобных систем, но без особых проблем Pidgin можно установить и на Mac OS. Вообщем-то в плане функциональности он ничем не […]

  40. as a sidenote, pidgin 2.5.0 (yes its in macports) still has various tooltip crashes for me. for example hovering in an URL in a IRC channel topic bar = instacrash. URL-s inside channels seem to work with right-click + Open. im to scared to left click them :)


    Tue, 2008-09-09 at 10:40:45

  41. […] changed since the latest Mac release. iChat and third-party applications like Adium, Digsby, and Pidgin have the upper hand with compatibility for other protocols. AIM for Mac is currently limited to AOL […]

  42. […] changed since the latest Mac release. iChat and third-party applications like Adium, Digsby, and Pidgin have the upper hand with compatibility for other protocols. AIM for Mac is currently limited to AOL […]

  43. pidgin 2.5.1, with a bunch of other recompiles incl. gtk 2.14 tooltips seem to finally be shown correctly, without crashing or exhibiting any other wack symptoms!

    now for some wack reason the buddy list window gets maximized every time you open it from the gtk menu icon.


    Wed, 2008-10-08 at 11:31:22

  44. Hi,

    I installed pidgin 2.5.1_0 without problems but since version 2.5.2_1 it has stopped working.
    it gives a lot of errors about eggtrayicon, like gianluca.
    what is the patch stuf he is talking about?

    oh, and one thing i found out is that you can have pidgin and everything else gtk+ related look good by installing gtk-chtheme and gtk2-aurora


    Sun, 2008-11-30 at 15:41:44

  45. replace gianluca with SpaDaRiO… i looked a the wrong comment :S


    Sun, 2008-11-30 at 15:43:15

  46. yeah pepijn, tried it now as well, 2.5.2 hasn’t been patched right i guess. thanks for the tip on gtk-chtheme, i’m running clearlook for now, for some reason aurora was going all flickery on me with controls disappearing and reappearing when you mouse over them…


    Mon, 2008-12-01 at 07:20:03

  47. hei i successfully installed pidgin like you said

    sudo port install pidgin +quartz +no_x11

    but if open it now, i get it in X11 and not the native app. do you know what i should do?

    Did you have the X11 version of GTK+ installed previously? If not, file a bug on Macports. -S


    Tue, 2008-12-30 at 16:45:56

  48. Another version of this port (pidgin @2.5.2_1) is already active

    I get this while trying to (re) install pidgin, how to fix it ? i already tryed: sudo port clean pidgin.


    port clean is for cleaning out a partially-built copy when it fails and you want to restart. Try sudo port uninstall pidgin


    Tue, 2009-01-13 at 19:16:26

  49. That helped, thx alot m8 !


    Tue, 2009-01-13 at 20:54:18

  50. Hi there,

    I am working right now on a Pidgin port to MacOSX. It is based atm. on the Gtk+ framework (from along with the patch from MacPorts. I setup a Xcode project to build Pidgin, e.g. I don’t use the provided makefiles.

    A first DMG can be downloaded here:

    Most of the current patches I made can be found here:

    My goal is to embedd the Gtk framework into the app bundle. That is not working yet because of some bugs in the framework. Watch the Pidgin ticket above for further news.


    Tue, 2009-02-17 at 19:39:08

  51. In the DMG above, it is needed to install the Gtk+ framework (which is also there in the DMG) but the installation is still easy: just double click on GTK+ setup, go through the setup and then just copy Pidgin over to your application directory. Would be nice to get some response if that works for other people.

    I thought it is a better (or more natural MacOSX) way to link it against the framework. Also all the ige-integration sources are already included in the framework.

    Unfortunatelly there are bugs in the frameworks and now I have to fix them in order to get it working bundled with the app. (Strange though that it works when the frameworks are outside, installed by the Gtk+ installer.)

    Right know I setup up the environment to rebuild the framework by myself to be able to do some modifications there. I hope that I have a working framework in the end which also works in the app-bundle.


    Tue, 2009-02-17 at 21:59:56

  52. Finally, I fixed the framework. Thus I was able now to embedd the framework in the app bundle, e.g. we have now a single app which can just be installed by copying it over to your application directory. :)

    You can download the new DMG here:

    I am trying to build a newer Gtk+ from SVN now because some things have improved already (for example some key mapping issues). I will also try to make some further fixes to Gtk+ itself for a better usability.


    Wed, 2009-02-18 at 02:21:25

  53. And again a new one, this time with a lot of improvements:

    – build with new Gtk framework from SVN
    – MacOSX notify support
    – some more plugins enabled
    – OTR plugin


    Thu, 2009-02-19 at 04:16:24

  54. ver3 crashes on me right on startup, menubar icon comes up, but no windows get there.

    Process: Pidgin [78055]
    Path: /Applications/
    Identifier: com.pidgin.Pidgin
    Version: ??? (2.5.4)
    Code Type: X86 (Native)
    Parent Process: launchd [170]

    Date/Time: 2009-02-19 12:10:40.441 +0200
    OS Version: Mac OS X 10.5.4 (9E17)
    Report Version: 6

    Exception Type: EXC_CRASH (SIGABRT)
    Exception Codes: 0x0000000000000000, 0x0000000000000000
    Crashed Thread: 0

    Thread 0 Crashed:
    0 libSystem.B.dylib 0x9249eb9e __kill + 10
    1 libSystem.B.dylib 0x92515ec2 raise + 26
    2 libSystem.B.dylib 0x9252547f abort + 73
    3 com.adiumX.libotr 0x00ca8d26 gcry_set_log_handler + 0
    4 libgcrypt.11.dylib 0x08366660 _gcry_xmalloc + 112
    5 libgcrypt.11.dylib 0x083667bf _gcry_xcalloc + 47
    6 libgcrypt.11.dylib 0x0837a2e4 initialize + 228
    7 libgcrypt.11.dylib 0x0837a53a _gcry_randomize + 26
    8 libgnutls.26.dylib 0x08302d10 gc_pseudo_random + 32
    9 libgnutls.26.dylib 0x082ecd2a gnutls_global_init + 490
    10 0x082cd849 plugin_load + 73
    11 com.pidgin.Pidgin 0x0004a0a5 purple_plugin_load + 806 (plugin.c:599)
    12 com.pidgin.Pidgin 0x0004b9cc purple_plugins_load_saved + 326 (plugin.c:1301)
    13 com.pidgin.Pidgin 0x002153bc main + 2598 (gtkmain.c:833)
    14 com.pidgin.Pidgin 0x00002202 _start + 216
    15 com.pidgin.Pidgin 0x00002129 start + 41

    Thread 1:
    0 libSystem.B.dylib 0x924304a6 mach_msg_trap + 10
    1 libSystem.B.dylib 0x92437c9c mach_msg + 72
    2 com.unsanity.ape 0x0349ec39 __ape_agent + 316
    3 libSystem.B.dylib 0x924616f5 _pthread_start + 321
    4 libSystem.B.dylib 0x924615b2 thread_start + 34

    Thread 2:
    0 libSystem.B.dylib 0x924805e2 select$DARWIN_EXTSN + 10
    1 libSystem.B.dylib 0x924616f5 _pthread_start + 321
    2 libSystem.B.dylib 0x924615b2 thread_start + 34


    Thu, 2009-02-19 at 10:13:08

  55. Do you have some own plugins? (Because, libgnutls.26.dylib and libgcrypt.11.dylib from the backtrace are not part of this release.)

    It seems that it tries to load your ssl-gnutls plugin and crashes in there. (It seems that it got confused with some code from the included libotr package.)

    Can you try to remove these plugins?

    Edit the file ~/.purple/prefs.xml and search for this:

    There should be a list of all your loaded plugins. Try to remove some entries there.


    Thu, 2009-02-19 at 15:05:22

  56. I mean search for:

    pref name=’plugins’
    pref name=’loaded’ type=’pathlist’

    (WordPress eats that up.)


    Thu, 2009-02-19 at 15:07:58

  57. of course.. it tried loading plugins from my macports installation of pidgin. cleaned the ‘loaded’ list up and now starts fine. thanks for the help!


    Thu, 2009-02-19 at 16:41:05

  58. Theoretically, the loading of other extern plugins should also work. But in this case I think something is messed up because libgcrypt is also included in the bundled libotr and it got confused there somehow.

    If you want to try a bit more, you can try if perhaps other plugins besides ssl-gnutls are working (I hope they do).


    Thu, 2009-02-19 at 16:56:07

  59. Albert, MSN doesn’t load without an SSL plugin. I went through contents, but there seems to be no library (gnutls etc) included. Thoughts?

    Other than that, having a Pidgin behaving like a real Mac app is great, thanks a lot for the effort!


    Thu, 2009-02-26 at 16:25:36

  60. Ah yes, that’s because I didn’t included the ssl-gnutls plugin (because MacOSX does not have GNUTLS).

    Anyway, GNUTLS should be inside the OTR plugin now (I think it is statically linked in there) so it could be a good chance to link the ssl-gnutls Pidgin plugin against the OTR plugin.

    I can try that for the next version. (Whereby my time is limited a bit right now.)

    You can also play with it yourself a bit if you want. A working Xcode project and all other files you need can be found here:

    You basically need to download and .


    Thu, 2009-02-26 at 19:17:34

  61. Thank you very much. Both the .app(ver 3) and the macport generally work for me. I’ll be looking for the update with the SSL whenever it may become available.

    One odd thing that may have nothing to do with the porting is: I share my .purple profile between a PC and a Mac. The mac log files are created in such a manner (probably issue) that they don’t display properly (in Pidgin) on either the PC or the Mac. Additionally, many 0x00 bytes seem to be inserted between entries.

    I think the log data is all present so, worst case, I expect I could run some cleaning script to fix the files.

    Thanks again for all your efforts.


    Fri, 2009-02-27 at 17:26:40

  62. Spoke about Adium vs Pidgin, any feedback on using Mercury IM?
    Personnaly, was very ok with Mercury until summer’08 when bugs began to rise, no (stable) video, unstable connexion, no offline messages, yet a very cool interface and useful functionalities.
    Seems that there’s no perfect msn solution under Mac OS X.
    Quite normal?


    Tue, 2009-03-03 at 08:45:46

  63. Have never heard of Mercury IM. But from their Website, it seems that this is MSN only? And Java? So not really an alternative.

    Btw., if somebody is interested, I have screenshots of Pidgin on MacOSX:


    Tue, 2009-03-03 at 11:06:34

    • Sorry for delay (the email reply notification ain’t have worked for some reason, or for no reason :-) )

      Yes, Mercury IM is only for MSN use. I found it great, and loved its functionalities (almost same as MSN Plus!Live) with advanced logging, alerts, aso… But happened that since last summer, for some reason, or not.. it began to bug every couple of days.

      Finally, also yes, it’s a Java application.. for what it’s worth..


      Wed, 2009-03-11 at 20:05:40

  64. Any word on SSL support for the .app?
    I use Pidgin for MSN (better than any of the other IM clients IMHO

    Conor Duffy

    Thu, 2009-03-05 at 15:56:30

  65. Any News about pidgin 2.5.5 on OS X? pidgin 2.5.4 doesn’t seem to work with changes on ICQ.


    Tue, 2009-03-10 at 14:23:10

  66. Good point. That forces me now to upgrade it to 2.5.5. I’ll report back when I’m ready. I’ll also try to include SSL support. Perhaps I can also fix the logging problem.


    Tue, 2009-03-10 at 14:29:05

  67. Wow, fast reply! Thanks for working on this.
    Great Job!


    Tue, 2009-03-10 at 14:37:50

  68. It’s ready:

    new features:
    * based on Pidgin 2.5.5
    * SSL support (builtin GnuTLS)
    * Facebook plugin
    * Gfire plugin


    Tue, 2009-03-10 at 18:12:19

  69. Sorry, I made a small mistake, I forgot to actually load the builtin GnuTLS plugin. :)

    While fixing that, I encountered another bug in GnuTLS and I also fixed that.

    Here is the new build:


    Tue, 2009-03-10 at 19:35:56

  70. Great! Thanks for solving this issue so fast!


    Tue, 2009-03-10 at 23:56:31

  71. Ok, I created a SF project now to manage all my patches against Pidgin (and other projects like GnuTLS, OTR, Gfire, Facebookchat, etc.) and to be able to host the downloads in a more confortable way.

    The downloads are here:

    Checkout the SVN to get everything you need to build it yourself.


    Wed, 2009-03-11 at 20:38:02

    • Albert, thanks for this! I just tested it, and it seems to work fine. :) I’ve updated the post to mention your SF project first. Regards,


      Wed, 2009-03-18 at 17:42:36

    • Hi, this project has too many bugs… where should bug reports be directed to?


      Mon, 2009-03-23 at 19:06:05

      • Best would be to the SF bugtracker:

        I know there are still some bugs (some more, some less important). You can also help fixing them. I have setup all the needed stuff in SVN, so you just have to checkout the SVN and then you can send me patches.

        Keep in mind though that most bugs probably are related to Gtk+ (the MacOSX port of it), not to Pidgin. In that case you should report them to Gtk+. And if you know that something in Gtk+ is already fixed for MacOSX, I can include the new Gtk+ version in the next release.


        Mon, 2009-03-23 at 19:22:12

        • Thanks! You are right that many of these are probably GTK+ bugs (not being able to copy text or switch tabs with the keyboard, buddy list entries not being redrawn until entry is highlighted, etc.), but they seem to not be present in the MacPorts build. Also some are probably Pidgin bugs (people getting messages with too many newlines, not being able to disable plugins permanently etc.)… I’ll file bugs on whatever I can, and also try to debug things if I can figure out this Xcode etc. Mac stuff :)


          Mon, 2009-03-23 at 20:16:09

        • Hi Albert,

          First I would like to thank you for your pidgin build. I was waiting for that for a long time.

          I noticed that the build is missing the Sametime Protocol which is included in the Pidgin distribution.

          Can you compile your build with sametime support? is there something I can just put inside the app to make it work?



          Fri, 2009-03-27 at 01:57:15

          • There were some problems with the Sametime protocol while compiling. If I recall correctly, it depends on some other lib.

            You can try yourself by compiling it yourself if you want, checkout the SVN from SF in that case.

            Or you could also compile only the Sametime protocol as an extern plugin and load it via the dynamic plugin system.

            I can also took another look for the next release at this. Please make a bugreport at SF that I don’t forget about this.


            Fri, 2009-03-27 at 03:09:58

  72. I had been using pidgin-macosx from sourceforge for some time now. Unfortunately, it does not work with YIM anymore after the last libpurple break. Anyway it can be updated with the latest libpurple version?


    Wed, 2009-07-08 at 06:41:50

  73. poor – Adium works with Facebook. Pigin 2.6 for OS X just says endlessly ‘can not connect’. Stick with Adium at least its stable, native and works.

    But of course. :-) There are a lot of things that don’t work with the Pidgin hack; this should be obvious and is stated in the first paragraph. -S


    Wed, 2009-12-09 at 08:21:30

  74. Hello!

    Is this project dead? Any changes you update to the latest pidgin version? :)



    Tue, 2010-01-12 at 05:54:34

    • Nah, it’s not dead. :) I am using it every day as my main IM (don’t have any other installed).

      I’m just a bit busy with other stuff right now and I didn’t saw an urgent need to push a version update. Is there any?


      Tue, 2010-01-12 at 10:07:27

      • One possible reason to update:

        Facebook recently added XMPP support for facebook chat. The settings to connect suggested at include “Proxy type = ‘Use Gnome Proxy Settings'”. This proxy-type option does not seem to be available in version 2.5.8.

        I’m not certain my Facebook XMPP failure on the Mac is due to the proxy option but that is the obvious difference I noticed.

        Thank you for providing


        Sun, 2010-04-04 at 22:50:57

  75. I want to took with friend’s in messenger pidgin


    Tue, 2010-02-09 at 12:15:15

  76. 2.6 Add Video/Audio support please can u update to this version or later Albert. Great work btw :)


    Tue, 2010-04-06 at 15:16:51

  77. Hello Albert!
    Just FYI, Pidgin 2.7.1 came out with direct connection for file transmission. :D

    If you could delight us with a build would be great!



    Wed, 2010-06-16 at 04:14:51

  78. I just installed pidgin with no problem but now a message keeps coming up saying “History Plugin Requires Logging” However no window opens for me to edit the logon information. Can anyone please help?


    Mon, 2011-01-31 at 08:11:09

  79. Hi everyone,
    i did install only piding doing ” sudo port install pidgin” after that i did that i found this post were says that you need to do it on this way “sudo port install pidgin +quartz +no_x11”. As i already did install pidgin can i just run “sudo port install quartz +no_x11 ? or need to do it all again as is described here?.



    Thu, 2011-02-24 at 23:00:36

    • If it’s working for you, and you’re happy with the way it works, no need to do anything. :-)
      BTW, this post is very old; probably you shouldn’t be following it anyway…


      Thu, 2011-02-24 at 23:39:26

      • Thanks a lot for the answer, ill take your advice ;) .


        Fri, 2011-02-25 at 00:06:18

  80. […] X 10.6.6 Install Pidgin using Macports, which is available at: (thanks to: for the +quartz and +no_xll flags): sudo port install pidgin +quartz +no_x11 This will install the […]

  81. […] очередь для Unix-подобных систем, но без особых проблем Pidgin можно установить и на Mac OS. Вообщем-то в плане функциональности он ничем не […]

  82. Thanks. These instructions really helped me install Pidgin easily on Mac OS X. Now, I want to add the Encryption plug in. Is there a one-step option? I downloaded it and put it in the main Pidgin folder, but it’s not showing up in plug ins list. Thanks!


    Tue, 2011-09-27 at 17:12:31

  83. This is awesome!


    Fri, 2012-03-09 at 06:07:04

  84. OR, use the awesome homebrew: > brew install pidgin


    Kyle Skrinak

    Fri, 2013-08-02 at 18:51:49

  85. Hi everyone,

    as a absolute Mac noob, I followed the guide above but I do not know how to launch Pidgin now. Can anyone please tell me what to do? I assume it all installed perfectly since I do not see any errors



    Sat, 2013-11-16 at 23:41:35

  86. […] Pidgin10 plugins imperdibles para PidginAnálisis de la versión 2.5.5 (la actual es la 2.6.4)Pidgin en Mac OSX […]

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