Profanity Illustration


Frequently Asked Questions


How do I connect with multiple accounts?

Profanity only supports one account per instance. But you certainly can run several instances of Profanity! Run Profanity in multiple terminals or use a terminal multiplexer like screen or tmux. An example setup can be seen in this blogpost.

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OMEMO doesn't work for me

OMEMO support was added in 0.7.0. Version 0.11.1 fixed a lot of common bugs. But please make sure to run the latest version of Profanity.

A common error is that the PEP nodes are wrongly configured. It could be that your server isn't configured the right way or that some client configured this the wrong way in the past. Profanity tries to correct this but might fail. See issue 1538 for details.

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Will Profanity run on <some platform>?

Profanity should run on any POSIX system, see the install guide for specifics.

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Will Profanity work with Google Talk?

Profanity was able to work with Google Talk. But in 2013 after Google merged it's messenger products Google Talk, Google+ Messenger and Hangouts together XMPP support was dropped.

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Will Profanity work with Facebook Chat?

Facebook have recently announced that they will no longer support the open XMPP chat protocol, so Profanity will no longer work with Facebook Chat.

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Will Profanity work with Slack?

Provided the XMPP gateway has been enabled for your team, Profanity will work. See the Slack page on gateways.

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Will Profanity work with MSN/Yahoo/AIM/IRC etc?

No, Profanity is purely an XMPP chat client.

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Can Profanity use my keychain/keyring to retrieve my password?

Yes, the /account command includes an eval_password property which can be used to execute a script to retrieve your password.

For example on Ubuntu using gnome-keyring and secret-tool:

To add the password:

secret-tool store --label="Bobs account" xmpp

You will be prompted to enter the password.

Command to use for the account eval_password property:

secret-tool lookup xmpp

On OS X, use the following command for the eval_password property:

security find-generic-password -s -w

You can also use Profanity together with pass, see this guide

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Can I connect to more than one account at a time?

No, the recommended way is to use multiple terminal windows, or a terminal multiplexer like GNU Screen or tmux.

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Why are my settings not persistent?

Because you did not use /save.

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Where is the profrc file format described?

Nowhere. Well, actually you cold read the source code. But you should not edit the profrc file yourself anyways. Just use the commands to manipulate the settings. And don't forget to /save before exiting.

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Why does the F1 key open terminal help rather than going back to the main console window?

Some terminals have a key binding for F1 to open help. You can use the alt-num keys to change windows, or if you prefer to use the F keys, you'll need to change the terminal setting to open help with another key.

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Why can I not type anything in the input bar?

Profanity uses the ncursesw library to support wide characters, which requires a UTF-8 encoding. Try running the following (or the equivalent for your language's UTF-8 encoding) in the terminal before running profanity.

export LANG=en_US.UTF-8
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How can I hide join/leave messages in MUCs?

You can deactivate those messages with the following command:

/presence chat none

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I've found a bug/have a feature request who do I tell?

If you have a github account, you can log an issue on the issue tracker.

Alternatively you are welcome to post on the mailing list.

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I'd like to contribute, what should I do?

A page has been written with some ideas for how to help out. Any contributions/ideas are very welcome. Also see the file on GitHub.

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I'd like to donate to Profanity

If you want to pay the developers and maintainers of Profanity a coffee there are various ways to do so.

On GitHub there is a Sponsor button linking to relevant pages. If you want to send the money directly you can ask for an IBAN via email.

We also got selected for GitHub Sponsors. You can find the link also on the Sponsor button on GitHub.

There is also the possibility to set a bounty for certain issues via Bountysource. So in case you want to see a certain feature implemented or bug fixed you can set a bounty there and the person doing the work gets the reward.

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Are there more clients like this?

Yes, there are several commandline clients: freetalk, mcabber, poezio and more clients.

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How to connect to XMPP server using Tor

To connect to the XMPP server by the Tor network, you must launch Profanity with a tool called "proxychains-ng".

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How to connect to an onion XMPP server

An onion XMPP server is a server which is providing an onion address to reach it inside the Tor network. You can specify the onion address with the /account command in Profanity.

/account set account_name server address.onion
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How to run the latest version on old distributions?

Some distributions, like Debian, have backports repositories. You can also run Profanity in a container via distrobox. See our blogpost

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How do I automatically open chat windows with contacts?

To the right side you can see your roster. It contains all your contacts and rooms (MUCs). MUCs can be automatically joined via bookmarks. If you want to open a chat window to a user automatically upon the start of profanity you can write a script to do that. Put /msg theusersnickname into ~/.local/share/profanity/scripts/myautoscript. And configure your account to automatically launch that script /account set startscript myautoscript.

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