How-To: Build Pidgin on Ubuntu Feisty

May 26, 2007

Over the past few weeks, I have started to get more involved in the Ubuntu community. I have fielded several question in #ubuntu. I even have a goal of learning to package some applications, including Flock.

There has been quite a bit of activity in #ubuntu on Gaim/Pidgin. Since the package in the repository has not yet been updated from Gaim2.0 Beta6, I figured I would write up a quick post on how to build Pidgin 2.0 yourself. This guide assumes you are using Ubuntu Feisty, though it can probably work on older versions of Ubuntu and perhaps other Debian-based distros but no guarantees.

First, download the latest source from Here is a direct link to the latest source.

Now, extract the source to the folder where want Pidgin to reside. I keep applications I build myself in ~/apps/[Application]. So I open the terminal, and do ‘cd apps’, followed by ‘tar xvjf pidgin-X.X.X.tar.bz2’. Replace the X’s with the correct version number. Now you have Pidgin extracted into a folder.

Now, make sure you have all the dependencies required to build Pidgin by ‘sudo apt-get build-dep gaim’. Next do ‘cd pidgin-X.X.X’, ‘./configure’, ‘make’, ‘make install’.

And now you can run Pidgin by ‘pidgin’. I also added Pidgin to my Gnome Panel. The command to run is ‘/usr/local/bin/pidgin’.