Softwares

Updated (Call and Video Support in Tow): Skype4pidgin is a Plugin That Enables You to Use Skype With Pidgin

skypepidgin-buddylist
Written by Jesse Afolabi

Update 1:

Me: “(excluded formalities)…….I’m currently writing a short review on your Skype4pidgin plugin and I’d like to know if there’s any other thing of importance that you’d like me to include; like do you have plans to support voice and video calls later in the future. Kindly let me know. Thanks”.

Eion’s reply, “Yes, the plan has been to add support for voice/video to the Skype plugin since Microsoft announced it a couple of years ago. To achieve this goal, I started writing the Hangouts plugin in December of 2015 – with the idea that their usage of WebRTC was a bit more stable than Skype’s – and then port that code over to the Skype plugin. That work within the Hangouts plugin is still in-progress though. It sounds like there’s still only limited support for voice/video through the website with ORTC (a slightly different standard), but things sound like they’re moving along, and hopefully by the time I’m done with voice/video in Hangouts, the website should be a bit more stable.”

Pidgin is a popular cross-platform IM that enables you to connect to multiple instant messaging services simultaneously without any obstruction.

The application features support for the most common protocols officially; however, you can maximize the use of Pidgin with its extensive list of unofficial plugins that will enable you to enjoy more functionality with the instant messenger.

We previously covered how to use Purple Hangouts with Google’s Hangouts IM protocol via Pidgin and today we are featuring a similar third party libpurple plugin that gives you access to Skype via a skype4pidgin plugin.

This Skype Plugin is one of the many unofficial Plugins by third party devs most of which can be found here.

Also read: Alternative IM Clients For Whatsapp, Messenger, and Telegram on Linux

Installing skype4pidgin

Skype4pidgin is easy to install and setup, however, the plugin is just about as limited in functionality as SkypeWeb for now. I’ve reached out to Eion who is the lead dev of the project on whether we can expect more functions with the plugin; he’s yet to reply me but I’ll be sure to update this article once he does.

At the moment, Skype4pidgin supports file transfers, live logins, and email address logins like its SkypeWeb counterpart.

Before proceeding to install skype4pidgin, you must have Pidgin itself installed in your system. For Ubuntu users, you can find it in the standard repo while Arch users will find it in the standard Arch repos too.

skypepidgin

skype4pidgin

For Ubuntu and derivatives/Debian systems

$ sudo apt-get install libpurple-dev libjson-glib-dev cmake gcc
$ git clone git://github.com/EionRobb/skype4pidgin.git
$ cd skype4pidgin/skypeweb
$ mkdir build
$ cd build
$ cmake ..
$ cpack

then install:

$ sudo dpkg -i skypeweb-1.1.0-Linux.deb

For Arch and derivatives

First, it is required that you get the build dependencies from here if they aren’t already installed.

Alternatively:

$ pacman -S --needed base-devel

Then proceed with cloning the git repo

$ git clone https://aur.archlinux.org/purple-skypeweb.git

and then, build and install

$ cd purple-skypeweb
$ makepkg -sri

Update 2:

Fedora/Korora/CentOS users can add xvitaly’s copr-repo to install the plugin.

$ sudo dnf copr enable xvitaly/purple-skypeweb
$ sudo dnf install purple-skypeweb pidgin-skypeweb

Thanks to GerhardK.

For other systems, head on to their GitHub to find instructions on compiling.

Should you encounter any problems on installing the plugin, do let us know in the comments below.

Thanks to paul374 for the tip. Got a tip, submit here.

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About the author

Jesse Afolabi

Jesse is that tech enthusiast you never heard of...he's mainly into things relating to Linux and Android and has an unending passion for both platforms which is why he writes about them.

  • GerhardK

    Hello

    and thanks a lot about the useful/helpful article & info about the Pidgin-plugin for webskype.

    Somehow I have a feeling that we can expect that Skype/MS will drop the
    almost non-existent Linux-“support” officially sometime this year or at
    the latest next year. What happened to the Skype-client on Linux is a
    shame for such a big company with it’s enormous ressources. The Skype-webclient is at least an alternative, although Linux-users are again treated as 3rd class because it doesn’t support audio & video.

    Fedora/Korora/CentOS.users can add xvitaly’s copr-repo to install the plugin:

    https://copr.fedorainfracloud.org/coprs/xvitaly/purple-skypeweb/

    Add the repo: sudo dnf copr enable xvitaly/purple-skypeweb
    Install: sudo dnf install purple-skypeweb pidgin-skypeweb

    Does anybody know if te pidgin-plugin for webskype supports groupchat?

    • Jesse Afolabi

      Updated the article with the repo you provided…Thanks 😀

      Skype4pidgin doesn’t support groupchat atm.

  • Moyo Freeman

    dpkg: error processing archive skypeweb-1.1.0-Linux.deb (–install):
    cannot access archive: No such file or directory
    Errors were encountered while processing:
    skypeweb-1.1.0-Linux.deb