Thursday, June 25, 2009

Compiling Pidgin from source. Updated

It seems that a better method suggested by Donald P. Kong in the mydebian mailing list works better than compiling pidgin from scratch. Basically, you can use Apt-Pinning. A method to install unstable packages on a stable debian distribution. This is assuming that the package you want to install exist on the unstable version of debian and all dependencies can be resolve. Otherwise,

If the package still does not exist under unstable version of debian, you can use the method below.

Recently, I had trouble using pidgin. The pidgin I have installed is 2.4.3-4lenny2. though I usually just wait a while and aptitude update and upgrade for the latest version when using sid, however, on Lenny it seems to be a little bit slower, and I don't know if its the x86_64 bit architecture that I'm using or it just takes time to have the latest version of pidgin debian package to be included into Lenny repository. Seems yahoo made some changes to the server, yahoo messenger plugin does not work anymore on Pidgin. As of this date, the best way to go around this problem is to get the latest 2.5.7 version. Unfortunately, there is no .deb package for this yet on lenny. I can't wait. Yahoo messenger is already part of the daily life routine. And I dont want to boot on windows or install a VM for windows.

So what I did, was I had to compile it from scratch.
Long story short, just for the sake of documentation for others, I have included what I did here.

$ wget -c
$ tar zjvf pidgin-2.5.7.tar.bz2
$ cd pidgin-2.5.7
$ aptitude install intltool libgtk2.0-dev libxml2-dev libgstreamer0.10-dev libdbus-1-dev gnutls-dev libnss3-dev
$ ./configure --disable-screensaver --disable-startup-notification --disable-gtkspell --disable-meanwhile --disable-avahi --disable-dbus --disable-perl --disable-tcl
$ aptitude purge pidgin
$ make
$ make install
$ ldconfig

I choose to disable some features of pidgin since I didn't think I will need it. I just need it to work until lenny comes up with an stable and updated working package.

After that, you can run pidgin as usual and connect to yahoo without any problems. The above instructions may not work since my PC is setup differently, if it doesn't, write a comment or join our mailing list. Maybe we can help you out.

Here are some references on the yahoo issues on pidgin. []

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Java Plugin

Upon getting a new PC with a Intel(R) Pentium(R) Dual CPU to play around with, I have encountered many problems due to the 64-bit architecture being used. Particularly, many applications still does not have the 64-bit version yet.

Among the problems is java plugin for firefox or in the case of debian, its iceweasel. Previously, sun did not have the 64 bit version java plugin for firefox. But I googled around and found out that recently, for the version java6 update 12, they have already include the 64 bit version plugin. Among the reference I found was at which gives all supported plugins and what not for mozilla.

1) The easiest way to install sun java on debian is to:
$ aptitude install sun-java6-jdk
This will fortunately, as of this date, lenny installs java6 update 12.

2) After doing this, you will need to choose your default java to use. Just for compatibility with other applications, if you are using netbeans or what not. To choose the default java to use, type:
$ update-alternatives --config java
then select the sun java you just installed.

3) Next is to create a symbolic link for the firefox/iceweasel to the java plugin
$ cd /usr/lib/iceweasel/plugins
$ ln -s /usr/lib/jvm/java-6-sun-
That should install the java plugin for firefox, for x86_64 bit version, and those using the amd64 kernel.

4) I later restart firefox, and check to see if the java plugin is installed. At the location bar, i type about:plugins. To see if there is a java plugin support. Looks like things look good.

5) also tried to upload some pictures into facebook. The upload features requires java plugin. Seems to work great.

So there you plugin seems to work. Have fun.