Chris, any chance of getting a gmail chat added to the forum similar to ICQ? Seems a lot of folks have gmail and/or asked for invitations. We could use it to help folks having problems with WD/WDL/MML. I believe a log can be kept that could be posted to the forum for archiving the fix action for others to view.
Sometimes it would just be nice to be able to chat with folks rather than posting a response and waiting for an answer, then starting the process over again.
Just an idea…maybe there is a better solution? Is there a chat function built-in to the forum software?
I have to be careful. The TOS/AUP for this hosting company (like most others) is that chat/IRC is only allowed under very controlled conditions. I’m not an expert on chat/IRC so I’d need to be very sure that I wasn’t implementing something that could get me into trouble. I’m not really sure what is so bad with IRC, but as many hosting companies seem to either not allow it or only under strictly controlled conditions there must be something dangerous lurking within!
As far as SMF integrated chat is concerned…of the three that are available, one is only in alpha release so I wouldn’t touch that. There seem to be a number of people reporting problems with a second mod. The only other mod is Java based and the example I’ve seen takes an age to load (60-90 seconds) to the point where you can do something with it. It also seems to be a full IRC server and so would need serious investigation to get to the point where I coudl be sure it was locked down enough to be sure that it won’t cause me problems.
I will take a look to see if there are any ways I could provide chat and I’ll let you know if I find anything.
The problem with GMail chat is that you need a GMail email account to use it. I’ve already got more email accounts than I really need, so setting up yet another one to get chat isn’t my idea of fun. How long before GChat is available without GMail?
Not sure if/when gchat will be a standalone. I really like gmail and it’s all I use anymore. With all that storage I never have to delete anything. The price is right. And best of all it doesn’t complain when I try to send attachments to Brian. I have other email accounts, but the one I use all the time is gmail. It has decent spam detection as well, I rarely get a spam in my inbox. And out of the thousands of emails I have received I have had 3 that ended up in the spam folder. So it’s not 100% but pretty darn close.
Ok, gotta reboot here, MS updates have been installed.
CGI/PHP chat should be OK, because I have dedicated servers so the only impact would be on my own performance. I think IRC is more of a network killing issue. If you cross link many IRC servers there’s a lot of pretty much real time traffic being passed around. My current hosting company seem to allow non-linked IRC with strict access controls to ensure that it’s available within a community and not generally available to the public. I’ve no experience of setting up an IRC server, so it’s not something I could take on lightly.
I’ll try some things out over the next few days and see if I can come up with anything.
I didn’t re-install it on the new server mainly because it hadn’t been used in over 12 months. It can take quite a bit of effort to make it work and unless people are online when you want to chat it’s not that useful. That’s why I’m not really sure if a text chat service would work too well. We’re all a bit to spread out across the globe to be online chatting at the same time. If I can set something up easily as a trial to see how it goes that would be good, but I wouldn’t want to put a lot of effort into setting something up that was rarely used.