Sheryl Canter

Configuring Pidgin from Behind a Firewall

PidginI use the open source, instant messaging client Pidgin to connect to multiple IM services at once. From my home computer, I had no problem configuring the program to work with AIM, SMS messaging (my cell phone), MSN Messenger, Google Talk, and Yahoo Messenger. But at work I encountered firewall problems with the last three.

Here’s how I was finally able to connect (listing only the changes from the default). I’m running Pidgin 2.5.2. All the setting changes are on the “Advanced” page of the account setup dialog. Of course, what worked for me might not work for you, but hopefully it will help.

MSN Messenger

I checked “Use HTTP Method” and voilà! With that one small change it connected.

Google Talk

  • Check “Force old (port 5223) SSL.
  • In the “Connect port” field, enter 443.
  • In the “Connect server” field, enter “talk.google.com”

It may not have been necessary to enter talk.google.com explicitly, but it doesn’t hurt and it works now so I don’t want to touch it!

Yahoo Messenger

This one was the big pain – pain to find, that is. The solution is actually very simple. I just had to change the port. The Pidgin support site lists a bunch of ports that are known to work with Yahoo: 20, 23, 25, 80, 119, 5050, 8001, 8002. But not all the ports may work on your computer. Naturally, the one that worked for me was the last one I tried: Port 23. And now – finally – it’s working.

I had some other miscellaneous difficulties. For a while, I couldn’t get Google Talk to recognize that I was online. The solution was to delete the account and recreate it. And for a while my buddy icons weren’t displaying. But after exiting and restarting Pidgin a few times, they now all display.

Hope this helps someone.

18 Comments

  1. santiago says:

    I got this erros even after trying your advice.. ssl connection failed
    what could go wrong ?
    it is using gnome proxy settings. and have no option for global proxy settings.

    thank you in advance.

  2. Every firewall is configured differently. What worked for me might not work for someone else. Which account are you having trouble with?

  3. David says:

    Port 23 worked for my Yahoo accout, but I am having trouble with AIM. It defaults to Port 5190. Any suggestions?

  4. I never had a problem with AIM – that worked out of the box for me. Try googling “AIM ports” and see if other ports will work on the AIM end. Then try each of them (as with Yahoo). If you can’t find an AIM port list, I’d try some wild guesses – can’t hurt. The worse that can happen is it won’t work. You could try all the Yahoo ports. Try port 80 – you know the firewall will let that through, and maybe it will work on the AIM end.

  5. Ranish says:

    Hi Sherly,
    I am also facing same problem while connecting to Yahoo via Pidgin behind firewall I tried with ports 20, 23, 25, 80, 119, 5050, 8001, 8002 in pidgin still its not working. Could u please let me know what are the other settings u used in pidgin?
    .
    But when I installed yahoo, and used the option “Firewall With no proxy” i am able to connect, However its inconvenient to use multiple clients.
    .
    Ranish

  6. I don’t think I changed any other settings for Yahoo – just the port. I can’t check because I’m no longer at that job behind a corporate firewall.

    But even so, it might not help. No two corporate firewalls are exactly the same. What worked for me might not work for you.

  7. Paras says:

    I am trying to configure pidgin for XMPP
    I have done following settings for this…..
    protocol:XMPP
    username: paras.shah
    Domain: companyname.com
    Resource:home

    in advance settings-
    I have checkd only Force old only5223 then
    connect port:5223
    connect server:talk.google.com
    filetransfer proxies:proxy.jabber.org

    and have used Gnome proxy settings in pidgin 2.5.2

    but still I have this problem-
    Not authorized

    can you solve this……

  8. Paras says:

    changing some options I got this error
    “SSL handshake failed”

  9. Sorry, as I’ve said to several other people, I couldn’t if I wanted to. I don’t have your setup. I just described what worked for me.

  10. Paras says:

    in the debug window the error is

    (12:32:33) certificate: Successfully verified certificate for talk.google.com

    (12:32:33) jabber: XML parser error for JabberStream 0x9678c00: Domain 1, code 5, level 3: Extra content at the end of the document

    (12:32:33) jabber: Sending (ssl):

  11. Paras says:

    sorry ….i did not see your comment….

  12. tashi says:

    I have problem with pidgin yahoo messenger..
    can any one help me to configure it
    my http proxy host is 10.0.0.1 and port is 3128 u can mail me at tashi.wangd@gmail.com

  13. lizkingx says:

    Your idea seem to have worked because at the bottom it says connected. But the problem is that there is no contact list. Can you help? This for gtalk. Thank you

  14. I don’t know. I have gtalk configured, but I don’t actually use it. I don’t have a contact list to begin with. Try asking the Pidgin folks.

  15. lizkingx says:

    did you configure msn or yahoo

  16. Yes, I configured it for everything. I described everything I did in my blog article.

  17. Amol says:

    None of these ports worked for yahoo messenger on my machine 🙁
    I am using 443 for gtalk….

  18. My intent in posting this was not to become tech support for Pidgin. All I know is what I posted. If it doesn’t work, please ask for help from Pidgin tech support.

    Closing this post for further comments.