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A friend of mine dislikes how clunky/bloated the Windows Live Messenger/MSN Messenger client is - pretty much stopped going on MSN because of it. I want to offer him an alternative client that can log onto MSN. I'm aware of the regular multi messenger clients: Pidgin, Trillian, Miranda, etc but I'm wondering if these are overkill for my friend who's just looking for a simple, no-nonsense MSN messaging client.

It doesn't necessarily have to be a client that ONLY logs onto MSN alternative, but I feel recommending something like Pidgin to my friend who just wants a better, faster, and user-friendly MSN alternative to be like using TNT to stop a fly.

I am aware that there is a similar question here: msn live messenger replacement client for Windows? . My question adds another requirement as I'd like it to be user-friendly with a straightforward and not too clunky interface (it doesn't have to be meant for power users).


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up vote 1 down vote accepted

Although you asked for something else I can only say that pidgins aim is to be exactly what you ask for: no clunky interface, user friendly, does not annoy the user with things he does not need (other that the few other protocols).

I cannot find the link but when I wanted to develop a small plugin for pidgin myself I stumbled over a document stating that it is pidgins aim not to clutter the user with unneccessary stuff that he probably never needs and more likely confuses him than be of any benefit.

If you want more than basic functionality thats what plugins are for in pidgin.

On wikipedia there is a list of nearly every IM Client supporting MSNP (or WLP).

Maybe emesene is what your friend needs:

Its goal is to replicate the functions of the official Windows Live client in a simpler, cleaner and easier to use interface.

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i try to find the document – Baarn Feb 7 '12 at 23:06
looking at the list i have to say emesene looks promising. – Baarn Feb 7 '12 at 23:20
Emesene looks good actually. Seems very lightweight and easy to use. I'll have him try both Pidgin and Emesene and see what he says. – White Phoenix Feb 11 '12 at 19:19

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