Home Support GAIM Portable FAQ
GAIM Portable FAQ
Check our Frequently Asked Questions to get a quick answer to the most common inquiries.
The FAQ page features selected solutions for users' reference by the PenZoft technical support
How do I register for a new account?
|How do I register for a new account?
This depends on the protocol.
AIM: Go to this website
Yahoo: Go to http://edit.yahoo.com/config/eval_register
Jabber: See the question How do I register a new Jabber account? below
ICQ: Go to http://web.icq.com/register
Gadu-Gadu: Use the official client to create an account
Novell: See your Novell server administrator
|How do I use AIM, MSN, Yahoo!, Jabber, ICQ, or any other protocol?
Use the Account Editor (Tools->Accounts, or the Accounts button on the start screen) to add
the account of the appropriate messaging service. Use the checkbox in the account editor to sign
|How do I use smiley themes?
To select a theme, open Gaim's preferences to the "Smiley Themes" page and click on whichever
|Why are the status icons so big?
We believe that, by adding a second line of text to each buddy list entry, we're able to show
more information about each buddy on the buddy list. The 'Big List,' as we call it, shows status
text, idle time, and warning level concisely and attractively. It shows more than one status
"emblem" for each buddy, indicating at the same time a mobile user who is away. Most
importantly, it puts the buddy icon in the list, making it far easier to locate buddies within a large
list where names are harder to pick out than images. Due to the increased usability of this
interface, we have made it the default.
We are aware that some people feel more comfortable using an interface more similar to IM
|Why do the emblems move around the status icon?
The four corners of the icon have different precedence. The lower-right is the highest, lower-left
is second-highest, etc. The most important emblem is in the lower-right, always. When an AOL
buddy is not away, the fact that [s]he's an AOL user is the most important information shown in
the icon. The consistency is that the user can always look in the same place on the icon to find
out what he needs to know. Also, importantly, the lower-right corner emblem is the only emblem
that shows up when "Small list" is on, as only one emblem would fit.
|How do I get sound to work correctly?
Gaim uses libao to play sounds. Playing sounds directly through esound or arts is no longer
Libao is a cross-platform library that allows programs to output PCM audio data to the native
|How do I make Gaim use ALSA or OSS for playing sounds? What does the
"Automatic" option do?
If you choose "Automatic", "ESD", or "Arts", Gaim uses libao to play sounds. Choosing "ESD" or
"Arts" forces libao to play sounds using that method, while choosing "Automatic" lets it decide for
If you choose "Automatic", you can create a file, either /etc/libao.conf or ~/.libao , and put one
|I blocked someone accidentally, how can I unblock them?
See the "Privacy" option under the "Tools" menu of the Buddy List.
|What is a "Buddy Pounce"?
Gaim introduced buddy pounces a few releases before AOL came out with "Buddy Alerts."
Despite this though, you could think of a buddy pounce as an Alert and get an idea of the most
minimal uses of a buddy pounce. In reality, a buddy pounce is much like a macro, or a recorded
action. When you set a pounce on someone, you choose from a number of events, such as sign
on or someone going away, and then you choose from a number of actions. These actions include
everything from playing a sound (like an Alert would do) to sending a message to the person, to
executing a command. This action will occur the next time gaim detects the event, ie the next
time the person in your buddy list who you have pounced signs on.
|Where does GAIM store its logs?
On unix, they are in ~/.gaim/logs , on win32 they are in the C:\Documents and Settings\
user\Application Data\.gaim\logs directory. (NOTE: Application Data is a hidden directory.) In
either case, new logs (new as of 0.73) are in subdirectories that correspond to protocol/
|How can I see my own status with GAIM ?
Currently the only supported method to see your own status is to add yourself to your buddy list.
This works with Aim, ICQ, Y!M, IRC, and some of the others, and is mimiced by gaim for MSN and
|Can I use GAIM for e-mail, blogging, RSS feed, or something else that isn't IM-
No, you can't. We get requests for this often, but Gaim is indeed a messaging client. Aside from
the capabilities each protocol may support, the Gaim developers have no intention to turn Gaim
into a multi-feature Internet client capable of doing everything under the sun. We also won't be
helping to develop plugins to turn it into that. There are many Internet applications available for
Linux, Windows, or whatever operating system you use that would undoubtedly do a better job.