Friday, October 26, 2007

Installing Pidgin For Nexenta

In order to work out these instructions I originally built Pidgin in its own zone, called the pidgin_zone. Since Pidgin requires the X Server graphics libraries, I have installed it in the global zone locally. For any installations that are not officially supported by the Nexenta package manager, I never use the default installation path or any installation path that requires root access. I generally use my $HOME directory as the installation path. This has worked so far when I have installed Opera, for example, and it worked for the Pidgin install, as well. Please keep in mind that since Nexenta's package manager does not have a record of these types of installations, you will be required to upgrade on your own without Synaptic's help.

Step 1: Install Nexenta Libraries

You will need the following packages for extracting and building the Pidgin source:
  • timezra@nexentaos:~# sudo apt-get install bzip2
  • timezra@nexentaos:~# sudo apt-get install libgnomeui-dev
  • timezra@nexentaos:~# sudo apt-get install make
  • timezra@nexentaos:~# sudo apt-get install gcc
The list of libraries that the Pidgin source depends on was originally taken from this post.
  • timezra@nexentaos:~# sudo apt-get install libxml-parser-perl (or else you will see the error "checking for XML::Parser... configure: error: XML::Parser perl module is required for intltool" when you run ./configure)
  • timezra@nexentaos:~# sudo apt-get install libxml2-dev gettext libnss-dev libnspr-dev libgtkspell-dev

Step 2: Build Pidgin From Source

After the Nexenta dependencies are installed, unzipping, building and installing the libraries should be easy.
  • timezra@nexentaos:~# mkdir $HOME/build
  • Download and copy pidgin-2.2.2.tar.bz2 to $HOME/build
  • timezra@nexentaos:~# cd $HOME/build
  • timezra@nexentaos:~/build# bunzip2 pidgin-2.2.2.tar.bz2
  • timezra@nexentaos:~/build# tar -xf pidgin-2.2.2.tar
  • timezra@nexentaos:~/build# cd pidgin-2.2.2
  • timezra@nexentaos:~/build/pidgin-2.2.2# ./configure --prefix=$HOME
  • timezra@nexentaos:~/build/pidgin-2.2.2# make
  • timezra@nexentaos:~/build/pidgin-2.2.2# make check
  • timezra@nexentaos:~/build/pidgin-2.2.2# make install
You should now have an executable file $HOME/bin/pidgin that will start the IM client!

Step 3: Copy Pidgin Accounts From One Computer To Another

Originally, I had been running Pidgin on my Windows laptop at work, but when I left that job, I had to turn over the computer to IT. I have collected some 6 or 7 IM accounts over the years and I hate to keep track of them. Previously, I had used Trillian to manage my accounts but switched to Pidgin when I registered with gmail (since, at the time, only the for-pay version of Trillian supported Google chat). I did not want to re-create all those accounts for my home install of Pidgin, but I could not find an easy way from inside Pidgin to export the registration / group data. After a quick search, in a local directory of Windows (I believe it was My Documents/Application Data), I stumbled onto a directory called .purple. I copied the resources icons, smileys, accels, accounts.xml, blist.xml, pounces.xml, prefs.xml and status.xml off the Windows machine.
After installing Pidgin into my $HOME directory on Nexenta, I noticed the new directory $HOME/.purple. I copied the contents that I had taken off the Windows machine to this directory, and Voila! It was just that easy to connect to all my IM accounts again and my contacts were properly arranged in all their appropriate folders.

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