Google Hangouts with Pidgin

To set up Google Hangouts with Pidgin, first install it:

sudo apt install pidgin

Then open the Pidgin client.

  1. Add an account and select XMPP protocol.
  2. Your username is the bit before the ‘@’ in your email address.
  3. Domain is the bit after the ‘@’. If you’re using a personal Gmail account this will be gmail.com; if you’re using a Google Apps email address (for example if your company use Gmail to handle it’s mail) it will be whatever’s after the @ in your email address.
  4. Resource can be left blank.

If you use two–factor authentication to sign in to your Google account (and you really should!) you will need an app–specific password to log in to Pidgin; don’t use your normal Gmail password. If this is you, go to App passwords and create a new password to Pidgin. Use this to log in. If you don’t use two–factor authentication use your normal password.

Before you save go to Advanced tab. You need to select ‘Connection security: Require encryption’ and Connect port: 5222. If this doesn’t work you can try ‘Connection security: use old-style SSL’ and Connect port: 5223. Both seem to work but I assume the old–style SSL is less secure. Finally, in Connect server enter talk.google.com. Press Save and connect.

Thanks to @mpekas for the tip about port configurations.