Jabber instructions

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Jabber is an instant messaging system that is open-source, with philosophy much like PG and DP. You can use any jabber server in the world to talk to anybody on any other or same server.

"Jabber" is the name of a communication protocol. It is not the name of the program you use, or of the connection. It's just a way of sending messages and chatting, directly. All you need to jabber, is a jabber client and a jabber ID.

Jabber is fun, it's easy once you're registered, and it offers great opportunities for us in personal sharing, group support and quick information. It's particularly useful when DP is down or slow, and encourages group activity (e.g. group proofing, "groofing" selected texts, which has pushed some sticky ones through remarkably fast) which takes away so much of the loneliness of the long-distance proofer. We're there, we're here, and we're enjoying ourselves. C'mon in!

Process overview

  1. Read this article as a good introduction.
  2. Download a Jabber program (ie: client) for your platform.
  3. Set it up with your Jabber ID either from an existing service or register for a new ID.
  4. Add a person to chat with someone one-on-one. One-on-one chats are private.
  5. Join a groupchat to chat with the larger DP community.




MacOS X:

  • Psi - a popular PC client among DPers (see also Psi Setup Instructions)
  • iChat AV - bundled free with the system software on every MacOS X system
  • Adium - uses the same library as Pidgin
  • Fire - no longer maintained, consider Adium or iChat instead


iPad and iPhone:

  • Talkonaut - This is the only client I've run into that has conference support as well as individual chats. It is free and is available from the Apple App Store

For additional clients see: http://www.jabber.org/clients. Different clients have different capacities: check yours does groupchat so you can join the DP groupchat. You may also want transports so you can talk to friends on other IM (Instant Messaging) networks like AIM, MSN, ICQ or Yahoo. Different clients work better for different people's setups, or suit different people's styles better.

Getting a Jabber ID

You may be surprised to know you already have a jabber ID! All Gmail and LiveJournal users have jabber IDs just from having an account with those services.

If you don't use one of the services above you'll need to register for one. Most jabber clients will allow you to register a new ID on a specific server, such as jabber.com or jabber.dk. Most clients expect the requested user ID to be in form username@server.com. You may need to try several different usernames to find one that has not already been used.

As of 26 Feb. 2014, jabber.org is not registering new accounts.

Occasionally jabber.org has issues communicating with gmail accounts. If you have trouble connecting to the jabber room with your gmail account, try setting up an account on one of the other jabber services.

Adding individual users

After you've downloaded a client and are online using your Jabber ID, you're ready to add users and rooms to your buddy list. How this is done varies between clients but is generally fairly straightforward via a button or a menu. When adding users the IDs are in the form username@server.com. The list of PGDP Jabber IDs might be useful if you are trying to contact a specific person.

Some users have authorization enabled on their account, preventing just anyone from adding their ID to a buddy list. If, after trying to add a user, your client has said that it has Requested Authorization the other user will have to approve your request. If you don't get an answer straight away, don't keep asking -- the request will come through when that person is online again and he/she can authorize you then.

Chatting with a group

You can also groupchat, on a server which supports it, such as conference.jabber.org.

The general DP chat and first stop for questions of all kinds is pgdp@conference.jabber.org. You can usually find somebody there at all times.

There's a special room set up for site development related issues on pgdpdev@conference.jabber.org.

To join a groupchat, add the room to your contact list. The mechanism is similar to how you add a user but instead you'll add a Chat. You'll fill out the following information:

  • Server: server to connect to, such as conference.jabber.org
  • Room: room to use, such as pgdp
  • Nickname: a nickname to identify you in the chat, usually folks use their PGDP name

Some programs don't allow you direct access to a groupchat such as ours, because it is not listed on the server (to avoid too many drop-ins). If you can't join for this reason, please jabber directly with another DPer, who will arrange entry for you.

Remember that you can be in more than one room at a time!


If you are disconnected from the groupchat and can't reconnect:

  1. Try a direct chat with another DPer to check what's happening
  2. Try to log on from another ID on another server. It is particularly useful to have 2 Jabber IDs, e.g. Tweety@jabber.org and TweetyBird@jabber.org.au because jabber software is still reaching stability, and servers go down occasionally. When one is down, another is generally up! Have two strings to your bow....
  3. Try the alternate chat room (typically at pgdp@conference.jabber.dk)

Client-specific instructions

Psi Setup Instructions

  1. Download Psi from their main web site: http://psi-im.org/ The file is about 10MB.
  2. Install the program on your PC.
  3. The first thing you will do is ADD ACCOUNT.
    • Enter “Name”. Follow the instructions in the left hand side text box.
    • Check the “Register new account” box.
    • Click on the “Add” button at the bottom.
  4. A new window will open called “Account Properties”. The first tab within that window is “Account”.
    • Jabber ID. Here you will select a unique User ID, such as your DP User Account name, and add the address of Jabber. Your entry should look like this:
    • Select a password.
    • Select any special Settings boxes that you prefer.
    • Click on the “Save” button.
  5. On the small Psi window (usually to the left of the Account Properties window), at the bottom, click the button that says “Offline”, and select “Online” with the yellow star. This little control window allows you to select your “status”.
  6. Next, select the Details tab.
    • Select the Edit Personal Details button.
    • Enter your General information, Work information, Location, About, etc.
    • NOTE: If you try and add a photo or avatar, and Publish and an image that is too large, the SERVER WILL DISCONNECT you from Psi/Jabber, and your status from “Online” will change to “Offline”. You will then have to:
      1. Select a smaller image, or
      2. Edit that image to make the size smaller, AND
      3. Once again, on the main Psi chat window, select the Offline button, and select the ONLINE icon to re-connect.
    • Select the Publish button, and you will receive a confirmation in a little window.
  7. If you have done all the following successful .. congratulations .. you did much better than I. It took me 7 hours to figure all this out.
  8. Next, being online and connected you will be using the Psi window to configure a connection with PGDP. Here goes…
    • On the lower left Psi window, click on the little Psi symbol/icon.
    • Select the “Join Chatgroup” icon.
    • Host = conference.jabber.org
    • Room = pgdp
    • Nickname = your nickname (or DP username).
  9. Click on the “Join” button.
  10. Ta-daa! There you are!!!

If there is anything out of sequence, or wrong here with these instructions, please fell free to correct it.

See also