Finch - A Pimpin' Penguin console frontend to libpurple. Instant
finch is a console-based modular messaging client based on libpurple
which is capable of connecting to AIM, MSN, Yahoo!, XMPP, ICQ, IRC,
SILC, Novell GroupWise, Lotus Sametime, Zephyr, Gadu-Gadu, and QQ all
at once. It has many common features found in other clients, as well as
many unique features. Finch is not endorsed by or affiliated with
America Online, ICQ, Microsoft, or Yahoo.
The following options are provided by finch using the standard GNU
command line syntax:
Use DIR as the directory for config files instead of ~/.purple.
Print debugging messages to stderr and start with the Debug
window. The messages shown in the Debug window are the same as
the ones printed in stderr.
Print this help and exit.
Don't automatically login when finch starts. Sets all accounts
Display the version information window.
You can use the following shortcuts (see the "Widget Actions" section
for a more complete list):
Alt + a
Bring up a list of available actions. You can use this list to
access the accounts window, plugins window, preference window
Alt + n
Go to the next window.
Alt + p
Go to the previous window.
Alt + w
Show the list of windows. You can select and jump to any window
from the list.
Alt + c
Close the current window.
Alt + q
Alt + m
Start moving a window. Press the cursor keys to move the window.
When you are done, press Enter or Escape.
Alt + r
Start resizing a window. Press the cursor keys to resize the
window. When you are done, press Enter or Escape.
Alt + D
Dump the contents of the screen in HTML format.
Alt + .
Move the position of the current window in the window list one
place to the right.
Alt + ,
Move the position of the current window in the window list one
place to the left.
Alt + l
Refresh the windows. This is useful after resizing the terminal
Alt + 1 2 ... 0
Jump to the 1st, 2nd ... 10th window.
Alt + Tab
Jump to the next URGENT (highlighted) window.
Alt + Shift + Tab
Jump to the previous URGENT (highlighted) window.
Ctrl + o or F10
Bring up the menu (if there is one) for a window.
F11 or Ctrl + x
Popup the context menu (if there is one) for the selected
Alt + /
Show a list of available key-bindings for the current widget in
Alt + >
Switch to the next workspace
Alt + <
Switch to the previous workspace
Alt + t
Tag (or untag) the current window
Alt + T
Attached all the tagged windows to the current workspace
Alt + s
Show the workspace list
F9 Create a new workspace and switch to it
~/.gntrc: configuration file for gnt applications.
A sample file looks like:
color-available = green; black
color-away = blue; black
color-idle = gray; black
color-offline = red; black
color-message-sent = cyan; default
color-message-received = red; default
color-message-highlight = black; green
color-message-action = yellow; default
color-timestamp = blue; default
#See below for details on color
shadow = 0
# There is experimental mouse support
mouse = 1
# To use some custom window-manager
wm = /usr/local/lib/gnt/s.so
# There's also a custom window manager called irssi.so
# Remember window-positions based on the titles (on by default)
remember_position = 1
# Use borderless one-line high buttons
small-button = true
# Workspaces are created simply by adding Workspace-X groups as
name = blist
# window-names specifies that windows with these semi-colon
separated names are placed into this workspace
window-names = buddylist;debug-window
name = IM
window-names = conversation-window
# window-titles specifies that windows with these semi-colon
separated titles are placed into this workspace. These are
matched as substrings. Window titles take precedence over names.
window-titles = Preferences;Pounce
# The RGB values range in [0, 1000]
black = 0; 0; 0
red = 1000; 0; 0
green = 0; 1000; 0
blue = 250; 250; 700
white = 1000; 1000; 1000
gray = 700; 700; 700
darkgray = 256; 256; 256
normal = white; black
highlight = white; blue
highlightd = black; gray
shadow = black; darkgray
title = white; blue
titled = white; gray
text = white; blue
disabled = gray; black
urgent = green; black
# Remap some keys for GntEntry
# Remap the up-arrow to the left-arrow
^[[A = ^[[D
# Remap the down-arrow to the right-arrow
^[[B = ^[[C
# Remap 'a' to 'bcd'
a = bcd
# Completely ignore the key 'q'
# But the following will NOT work
#abc = bcd
# Hitting 'space' will activate a button
\ = \r
You can specifiy key-bindings for specific widgets. The following
entries in ~/.gntrc correspond to the default keybindings for the
tab = focus-next
right = focus-next
left = focus-prev
down = dropdown
up = dropdown
c-a = cursor-home
home = cursor-home
c-e = cursor-end
end = cursor-end
backspace = delete-prev
del = delete-next
c-d = delete-next
c-u = delete-start
c-k = delete-end
c-b = cursor-prev
left = cursor-prev
c-f = cursor-next
right = cursor-next
tab = suggest-show
down = suggest-next
up = suggest-prev
page-down = suggest-next-page
page-up = suggest-prev-page
c-w = delete-prev-word
a-b = cursor-prev-word
a-f = cursor-next-word
a-d = delete-next-word
c-v = clipboard-paste
c-p = history-prev
c-n = history-next
c-r = history-search
c-up = history-prev
c-down = history-next
up = move-up
down = move-down
c-n = move-down
c-p = move-up
pageup = page-up
pagedown = page-down
backspace = move-parent
home = move-first
end = move-last
# Following is the default binding for the context-menu
menu = context-menu
# The following will let you open the context-menu in the buddylist
# c-b = context-menu
f11 = context-menu
c-x = context-menu
c-o = show-menu
f10 = show-menu
The c- corresponds to the Control key. You can also use ctrl- or ctr-
or ctl- to indicate a combination. For alt-keys, you can use one of a-,
alt-, m- or meta-. You can also use home, end, left, right etc. keys.
To unbind a key which has a default binding, you simply bind it to the
empty string. For example, to unbind Alt + q from the Quit function,
you would use:
You can also specify key-bindings to trigger specific menuitems in
windows. For example, the following entry in ~/.gntrc will bind Ctrl +
t to the 'Send IM...' item in the buddylist:
c-t = send-im
The following is the list of IDs of the current menuitems in the
There is experimental mouse support. You can focus windows, activate
buttons, select rows in a list, scroll using the wheel-scroll etc.
Selecting text in a text-view copies it to the gnt clipboard. Mouse
support is disabled by default, so you need to enable it in ~/.gntrc
(see the sample above).
The default window management is very limited. But it is possible to
write custom window managers to suit your needs. There is a sample
window-manager included (named s.so) which adds a little 'close-button'
for the windows, removes the borders from the buddylist and pops up new
windows in the middle of the screen, instead of at the upper-left
corder. It is provided as a sample simple manager, but it should be
possible to write more complex managers, and it's very possible that
the window-manager API will need to be enhanced. Look at the sample
~/.gntrc file above to see how to select a window-manager.
It is also possible to rebind the window-manager actions in ~/.gntrc,
a-n = window-next
a-p = window-prev
a-c = window-close
a-w = window-list
a-d = dump-screen
a-, = shift-left
a-. = shift-right
a-a = action-list
a-m = start-move
a-r = start-resize
a-q = wm-quit
a-l = refresh-screen
a-s = workspace-list
a-t = window-tag
a-T = place-tagged
a-C = toggle-clipboard
a-/ = help-for-widget
a-c-j = window-scroll-down
a-c-k = window-scroll-up
# The following action is still incomplete, and doesn't have a default
# Other actions: window-next-urgent, window-prev-urgent
# For the sample custom window manager
a-b = toggle-buddylist
# For the irssi window manager
a-L = move-right
a-H = move-left
a-J = move-down
a-K = move-up
There are a few helpful commands in addition to the regular commands.
You can use these from any conversation to access other windows.
for the accounts window.
for the buddylist.
for the debug window.
for the plugins window.
prefs for the preferences window.
status for the status window.
FAQ for finch is located at
Known bugs are listed at
Before sending a bug report, please verify that you have the latest
version of finch and libpurple. Many bugs (major and minor) are fixed
at each release, and if yours is out of date, the problem may already
have been solved.
If you fix a bug in finch (or otherwise enhance it), please submit a
patch (using mtn diff > my.diff against the latest version from the
Monotone repository) at http://developer.pidgin.im/simpleticket
You are also encouraged to drop by at #pidgin on irc.freenode.net to
This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it
under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the
Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your
option) any later version.
This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but
WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU
General Public License for more details.
You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along
with this program; if not, write to the Free Software Foundation, Inc.,
51 Franklin Street, Fifth Floor, Boston, MA 02111-1301 USA
Sadrul Habib Chowdhury <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This manpage was written by Sadrul Habib Chowdhury
<email@example.com> and Dennis Ristuccia