How to Configure Kopete to Use Facebook’s New XMPP Chat

As Facebook usage continues to grow, many people rely on Facebook as their primary method for chatting in real time with their friends and family. I am not one of those people, but since many of my friends are, having a way to easily contact them in real time is very important. There have been attempts to make plugins for major IM clients such as Pidgin and Kopete that can work with Facebook, but they were difficult to maintain and did not always perform well.

A few days ago, Facebook announced that they have opened their chat system to XMPP, which is an open standard for chat communication. It is famous for the many Jabber chat systems that exist on the Internet and also for its adoption by Google as their protocol for Google Talk. Now, any client that can connect to XMPP will be able to connect to Facebook.

This is particularly good news for mobile devices that might have supported XMPP but did not have Facebook support. What follows are the steps you need to take to connect your chat client to Facebook chat. I have included Kopete for KDE as an example, but feel free to add more in the comments.

Facebook’s tour currently has a nice feature that explains how to access their chat from Pidgin,Adium, and Apple’s iChat, and even gives you the exact use name you will need.

Kopete configuration window

Kopete configuration

1. Click “Settings” in the top menu and then click “Configure”.
2. Under “Accounts”, click “Add Account…”
3. Select “Jaber” from the list of protocol choices.
4. For username, type your Facebook  name (what is normally at the end of your Facebook URL)  For example, if your Facebook name is bobblehead, you will need to enter If, for some reason, that username does not work, you can check the Facebook Chat page in their site tour, click “Other – Windows/Mac/Linux” and see what your username is supposed to be.
5. Password is your normal Facebook password.
6. Under Connection preferences, leave all three options unchecked (no SSL).
7. Click OK, and you’re done!

Kopete account settings

Facebook is currently telling users to disable SSL, and I am not sure if this is how they intend to keep it permanently. I also could not get profile images to display in Kopete, although users might have more success with other clients. I did test it with one of my friends and did not experience any anomalies. He also did not report any strange characters or other problems coming from my end.

It seems to do a good job of keeping track of when users are idle on their Facebook pages, just like the web-based Facebook chat. Certain other features like voice and video will not be supported unless Facebook adds those features, even if other XMPP connections support it.

Overall, it works very well and feels like a normal IM chat protocol, complete with emoticons.  Now, it will be that much more difficult for you to hide from your old friends.

Tavis J. Hampton

Tavis J. Hampton is a freelance writer from Indianapolis. He is an avid user of free and open source software and strongly believes that software and knowledge should be free and accessible to all people. He enjoys reading, writing, teaching, spending time with his family, and playing with gadgets.


  1. Does this only work with certain versions of Kopete? I've got Debain Lenny (Kopete ver. 0.12.7) and I can't get this to work.

  2. Works for me (ver. 1.0). Those setting are just what I needed.

    I've already gotten it working in Empathy in Gnome and just recently changed to (try) KDE. So glad I don't have to look at bringing Empathy over to KDE.

  3. excelente :) it works great i am using ssl i get the contact pictures & groups , typing notification,

  4. It is working thanks but there is one problem, in my facebook chat option I have added many lists (blocked persons/ important persons/ college friends etc and Other friends by default). Kopete is showing all the online friends excepting the Other friends list. How can I chat with them (Other friends) using Kopete?

  5. Check the Facebook Chat page for updated information, i.e. they are now asking for ‘use ssl’.

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