In association with heise online

29 June 2011, 12:55

Cross platform IM client InstantBird goes 1.0

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • submit to slashdot
  • StumbleUpon
  • submit to reddit

Instantbird logo

InstantBird is a cross platform, open source, instant messaging client which has just reached version 1.0. The GPLv2 licensed InstantBird runs on Windows, Linux and Mac OS X and is based upon libpurple and code from various Mozilla projects. It has been in development since 2007, when it began life as an "XUL UI for Pidgin".

Since then the developers have been releasing working versions with "small" 0.x.x version numbers but recently reconsidered their position. Given they were due to release InstantBird 0.3 "with more changes than any previous release" and were unlikely to release a future version with as many changes, they decided to make 0.3 their version 1.0.

Instantbird across platform
Zoom Instantbird across platform
Source: Instantbird
Being built on libpurple, InstantBird supports AIM, Facebook Chat, Google Talk, Twitter, MSN Messenger, XMPP, Yahoo! Messenger and many other IM protocols. It also supports other protocols, such as LiveJournal's LJ Talk, through its Add-ons system. There are over 250 add-ons currently available which offer a range of functionality beyond additional protocols, including UI theming, language packs and dictionaries, developer tools and usability enhancements such as tab completion of nicknames, highlighting, colourising of buddies, and vertical tabs.

Despite the name, the project is completely independent of, and not sponsored by, the Mozilla Foundation; however the developers appear to share Mozilla's commitment to user-respecting software and hope to emulate Mozilla's example.

Binary versions of InstantBird in English, German, Spanish, French, Italian, Dutch, Polish, Russian, Czech, Slovak and Ukranian can be downloaded from the InstantBird front page or from an all-versions download page which also includes a link to a tar ball of the source. Release notes for the new version are also available. InstantBird is licensed under the GPLv2, but much of the source is also available, according to the developer's FAQ, under a Mozilla style tri-licence (MPL 1.1/GPL 2.0, LGPL2.1).


Print Version | Send by email | Permalink:

  • July's Community Calendar

The H Open

The H Security

The H Developer

The H Internet Toolkit