Getting started with Pidgin development

Mark Doliner mark at
Tue Nov 26 11:48:41 EST 2013

On Sat, Nov 23, 2013 at 4:53 PM, Mike Thompson
<michael.p.thompson at> wrote:
> I was curious about development setups and practices. I am able to compile
> from the head of the repo. Is there any easy way to Sandbox pidgin? have it
> not look in user profile paths and the like? Is this a common development
> practice?

I usually pass --prefix=/home/mark/pidgin to or configure
to have it install to a local directory. You could pass
--config=/home/mark/alternate_dot_purple to use a different ~/.purple
directory (though personally I just do my development as a separate
local user because I find it to be easier and more isolated).

> In a more general note, does anyone know of any articles or resources on
> development paradigms that work well with Pidgin? or how do you go about
> doing it? Another course of action here might be to do all of this inside a
> VM. Any advice you have for getting going would be welcome.

I think most of us tend to use simple text editors (vim, emacs, etc)
and "make install" from a command line. A VM seems like overkill
unless you're running on Windows but prefer to develop on Linux or you
want to build against/test exotic versions of libraries (e.g. compile
your own cutting edge glib or gstreamer or something).

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