Neil Turner's Blog

Blogging about technology and randomness since 2002

Discuss amongst yourselves

Because I may not be posting in a while, here’s an entry where I’m inviting you to comment. The question I want you to answer in your comments is this:
Which Instant Messaging program do you use, and why?
As many of you know I use Adium on the Mac and Trillian Pro on Windows, since I have logins for four networks, including Jabber which is only supported on the Pro version of Trillian (it also adds metacontacts, which means that you can have multiple identities for the same person combined together). But what do you people use?


  1. When i’m at home (on macs) I use adium, which I love. Its got such a well polished UI and great extenibility (the integration with growl, for one), I really can’t find many faults in it. Its the best choice for msn on the mac IMO, and I also use jabber/ichat/gtalk so its good to have a multi-protocol IM client in one (and niceties such as meta contacts).
    When i’m at work (using Linux) I use gaim (2.0 betas). At work my msn contacts are contactable via the jabber transport on the work jabber server. So generally I only use the one network (jabber). While I quite liked gajim, its handling of conversation tabs left a little to be desired. The primary reason I use the gaim 2.0 beta is the fact it has sensible tab conversation tab sizing (but not quite as polished as adium).

  2. Trillian Pro on Windows, Gaim on Linux and Adium on OSX.
    If I used KDE, I’d probably use Kopete 🙂

  3. I prefer Gaim 2 on both Windows and Linux. On Mac I use iChat + Chax. Gives many of the niceties of Adium but maintaining video. I don’t really like the UI of Adium, none of the themes seem to fit in well with the rest of Aqua. There are several that are OK, but I prefer iChat and Chax makes iChat useful.
    I do connect to Jabber and AIM on iChat, I only had one or two people on MSN and Yahoo! so I didn’t see the purpose of making myself use them too. And since ICQ and AIM merged most of my international friends are available through AIM.
    I don’t like Trillian Pro for the same reasons I don’t like Adium, they insist on using themes (most consider it a feature) but I want to be able to turn it off and have it match the rest of my windows.

  4. I use Adium on my iMac and a combination of Gaim and Google Talk on the Windows laptop. However, I can’t remember the last time I used the laptop for IM.
    Adium is what every IM program should be. Very fast, easy-to-use, and you can customize it to your heart’s desire.
    Only thing I really wish it had was support for audio chats and conferences. I imagine with all of the work Google is putting into Jingle that it won’t be too long before that becomes part of Adium.

  5. I use Gaim (2.0 beta 3) on my Windows machine. I have friends who use Yahoo, MSN, Google Talk, and ICQ. I prefer to use one interface to chat to them through. I decided that I didn’t want to pay for Trillian Pro and Gaim is coming along quite nicely (they are working on voice and video chat).

  6. I use Gaim, both at home and at work. I have friends or family members on AIM, Yahoo, and Google Talk, and Gaim lets me use a single client to communicate with them all. At work (IBM), our internal IM client is Lotus Sametime Connect, which Gaim can handle just fine if you install the Meanwhile plugin.
    All of this is free.

  7. I also use Gaim. My use of platform-agnostic programs like Gaim, Firefox, and Thunderbird made it easier to switch from Windows to Linux.

  8. MSN — Most, if not all, of my friends use it.

  9. For me it has to be Gaim. It’s cross-platform capabilities means I don’t get confused when having to use an alternative operating system such as Windows. Because the settings are stored in flat files, I can easily transfer them between computers rather than faff with changing a load of settings. And the one time I filed a bug report with them, they were very helpful in getting it sorted out.
    Very rarely, when I don’t have a way of running Gaim, then I will ssh into my home server and run Center ICQ on the command line. It’s not nice, but it works.
    As for transports, well most of my friends use MSN. A couple only have ICQ which is very annoying. Ideally I’d love to see everybody move over to Jabber though due to it being open source and encryptable.

  10. Well, I generally reside on MSN but jump on Trillian/Yahoo Messenger as and when I feel like it. Thanks to this conversation though I was made aware that the GAIM Beta was available for Windows systems so I’ll be trying that today.

  11. I use WLM for one reason: the hype.
    I need the MSN protocol.

  12. Oh my…metacontacts? Given that too many copies of contacts and a generally messed-up contact list is one of the primary reasons I gave up instant messaging, perhaps I should go for Trillian Pro.
    I don’t use IM anymore, really. When I did, I used Trillian, of course. But instead of why I use the program, I have reasons why I don’t use it.
    1. The aforementioned chaotic contact lists.
    2. Too many weirdos sending messages. This was really bad on Yahoo but happened occasionally on other messengers. In addition to the spam and random solicitations, I often got people demanding to know who I was and why I was on their contact list. As if I should know!
    3. I just don’t need the instant communication, really. I have my Gmail window open at all times (unless I’m using gmail-notify) so I am always reachable by e-mail. I don’t feel the urge to chat with people over IM.
    I do, however, have both AIM and Yahoo on my mobile device. I almost never use them; when I do I usually use AIM. (I don’t even know why I downloaded Yahoo; at least it was free!)

  13. MSN – we use it at work, and that’s really the only time I use it at all. Off to look into GAIM though.

  14. I use miranda as its free and you have to pay for trillian – but I rarely chat nowadays as i’m so busy.
    Oh – at work I use sametime connect (sucky Lotus Notes) as I don’t have any choice.

  15. Skype, (yeah really my freinds use it for IM more than for talking) don’t use IM much though.

  16. You don’t have to pay for Trillian Pro to use it. Download a P2P client or Bit Torrent and download a Pro version of Trillian with a Patch . That’s what I did.

  17. Well, congratulations for admitting that you break the law 🙂 .
    Seriously, Trillian pro is a very nice program and worth paying for – it’s not expensive and I get a lot out of it.

  18. how can i recieve gmail notifications in gaim 2.00 beta 3
    please help..
    i need this urgently..