After more than two and a half years of hard work Kadu 0.9.0 is released.
This is our biggest release with a lot of changes from previous versions, the most notable are:
- XMPP (Jabber, GTalk, Facebook Chat) support.
- Multiple accounts can be configured in one instance.
- Adium chat styles support.
- SQLite-based chat history with full support for Gadu-Gadu conferences, sent SMS's and history of your contacts' status descriptions.
This is also our first release with official support for three main OS's: Linux, Mac OS X and Windows.
If you like simple but powerful applications, you will like Kadu for its configurability and ease of use.
Multiple protocols, accounts and metacontacts
The biggest change in 0.9.0 release is Jabber/XMPP support. It allows users of Facebook Chat, GTalk and other XMPP networks to use Kadu as their IM application. You can configure multiple accounts of multiple types and use them from one Kadu window.
You can add any number of contacts from every configured account to your buddies (metacontacts). Depending on your personal preferences contacts can be shown under buddies or can be hidden to not clutter buddies list.
Kadu automatically chooses most available contact of buddy to chat with. If more than one contact have the same availability status, contact with higher priority is chosen (priority can be set up in buddy data window just by sorting contacts).
If you wish you can choose to ignore availability status and always choose contacts by priority.
Easy of use
Before 0.9.0 release Kadu suffered from not-usable menu layout. It has changed after last year's Season Of Usability. Kadu received new, better menus.
Many dialogs were updated or made from scratch, like Accounts Configuration Window. Add Buddy Window allows for set up basic buddy attributes, like authorization. Buddy Data window allows for sorting buddy's contacts by personal preferences.
Many changes were done to chat window. New default toolbar layout is simple and well-thought. Adding of toolbar separators and spacers allows for better configurability, like adding buttons to right side of toolbar.
Adium styles support (on Linux with support for translucence) gives more aesthetic pleasure when using Kadu. Slightly modified Satin style is the default. Text copied from chat window contains textual emots instead of emoticons so it can be pasted into another window without loosing anything.
Emoticon selector displays emoticons in right proportions and can enlarge emoticons under cursor to their real sizes.
Buddies list was changed a lot, too. Buddies with pending messages are displayed on the top with envelope icon next to them. Avatars support was added. You can set any image as your buddies-list background.
Modern searching mechanism was added - just start typing and search bar will appear. Buddies are matched by display name and by contacts data. Search bar hides itself after opening a chat window.
Editing groups is now easy. Every group has its own dialog window, where you can change group's name and icon. "All" group can now be hidden ("Ungrouped" pseudo-group will appear instead).
Notification support was extended with KDE4 notification support - just load kde4_notify plugin. New notification tree in configuration window allows for configuring whole group of notifications at once (for example: status change notifications could be configured per-status or as a whole).
IM networks/protocols support
New Kadu supports two protocols: Gadu-Gadu and Jabber/XMPP. Facebook Chat and GTalk are using Jabber/XMPP protocol, so everyone can connect to these networks using Kadu and chat with their friends from Facebook without any problems.
Similar accounts can be joined into Identities (e.g., Work, Friends) and get common status-change button.
Gadu-Gadu support was extended with TLS connection support (this option must be manually turn on in account settings), typing notifications and full multilogon support.
Multilogon allows you to be logged in on the same account using different clients on different machines. Each client with multilogon support receives full chat history - with sent and received messages. This allows for keeping your chat history coherent. Each client can also disconnect each other.
Kadu 0.9.0 is the first release where Gadu-Gadu support is optional - just unload gadu_protocol plugin if you are not using Gadu-Gadu protocol.
Jabber is not new for Kadu but 0.9.0 is the first release with official support for it. There was Juzef's unofficial XMPP plugin for 0.6.0 and 0.6.5 versions. It was heavily reworked and merged into main Kadu code.
For now jabber_protocol plugin supports chatting and roster management. In next version features like MUC, file transfers and services will be added.
New history plugin is based on Juzef's sql_history that was unofficial for 0.6.5 version. This plugin uses SQLite for storage - this allows for very fast searching. Import of old text-based history is performed automatically (with history_migration plugin). It can take a few minutes for really big histories. Kadu is one of few IM applications with full conference, SMS and contacts' status description history support.
New history window allows for easy searching and removing history entries per-buddy and per-conference.
Configuration wizard was simplified and allows for setting nickname and adding new accounts. At end it asks for opening accounts window, where users can set up additional IM accounts and modify their details.
Screenshot plugin allows for creating screenshots and sending them to Gadu-Gadu contacts. It uses QGraphicsView architecture and allows for cropping screenshot before sending.
Experimental imagelink plugin (not loaded by default) allows for changing incoming image links and YouTube links into images and YouTube videos - you can watch YouTube inside chat window (Flash needed).