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I'm running Ubuntu 9.04, and have Pidgin's Message Notification plugin installed. I have "Set Window Manager "URGENT" hint" on, which I was expecting would flash the title bar of the message window, but it doesn't do that.

I also have the Libnotify Popups and Guifications plugins installed, but they only display a notification for fixed period of time, and if you miss it, it's gone. As far as I can tell, the only persistent notification that you have an unread IM is the tiny green dot on the envelope notification near the clock, which is very easy to overlook, and the conversation tab being highlighted in blue, which isn't useful if your IM window is behind another window.

I assume that the "URGENT" hint is being sent to the window, but that my window manager just isn't doing anything with it. Is there any way to make my window manager flash the title bar, or some other way to get a more aggressive notification that will persist until I've brought focus to the message window and viewed the message?

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  • Bring up Pidgin’s Buddy List
  • Click Tools > Plugins
  • Locate the Message Notification plugin and highlight it
  • At the bottom of the Plugins window is a Configure Plugin button. Click it
  • Under Notification Methods check both Raise conversation window and Present conversation window
  • Click Close
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Don't know how to make Ubuntu's libnotify do anything different, but Pidgin itself has an option for opening new chat windows when someone sends you a new message. Maybe better then nothing :-)

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Not sure if this is what you mean, but the "Message Notification" plugin also has an option to raise the conversation window. That's pretty hard to ignore. – Brendan Long Dec 11 '09 at 21:18
I don't completely understand what they mean by "Raise". I have my conversations grouped into a single window, and if I minimize that window, it is un-minimized when a new message comes in. Again, that's nice if I'm sitting in front of my machine when it comes in, but not really useful if I wasn't there. If the window is not minimized, it does not come to the front either. So if I want to count on "un-minimized chat window" as my notification that something new is here, I have to remember to minimize every time after I read a message. – Ryan Olson Dec 11 '09 at 22:09
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I installed Avant Window Navigator for an unrelated reason (I wanted to use the Remember the Milk plugin), but it had the nice side effect that Pidgin now bounces its icon in my dock, which is enough for me to notice new messages now.

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Go to the plug-ins (control-U) and select "Message Notification." If you want to notice all IMs, turn on the "Raise Conversation Window" option. Popping in front of the other windows is obnoxious and ought to get your attention.

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