Cross-platform (Win,Mac,iPhone) LAN (& ideally WAN) Messenger
May 5, 2013 5:38 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for a great LAN messenger for my business with 3 computers. I've tried Squiggle but I've got niggles. Things like how and when messages do or don't pop up and whether or not they steal focus. It seems the messages don't attract attention when they should and do when they shouldn't. It's like it's nearly there but not quite.

And to complicate things I'd love to be able to be connected to this closed messaging network from a remote location (i.e. from home on my laptop) and also on the move from my iPhone.

So I began looking at alternatives. I found TeamTalkApp which seemed perfect but the download link fails and the devs don't respond to emails. Looks like a dead project.

So then I began looking into VPNs. Hamachi seems ideal but it won't do the final leg of the ideal - the iPhone chat bit.

Does anyone know how this could be done? Outlook Messenger again seems like a contender that might cover all bases but is a paid for solution. That would be OK, but if there is open source software out there that would be preferable.

Is there something obvious I'm missing?

posted by dance to Computers & Internet (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
At my office, we use Openfire to host a private XMPP chat server on the LAN. Our IT department installs Spark as a messanging client on everyone's workstation, but since XMPP is a standard protocol, lots of people use Pidgin to chat instead.

I'd say stick with a standards based server and then you should have flexibility in the chat clients you can use.
posted by reptile at 5:57 AM on May 5, 2013

Reptile has it - A Jabber/XMPP server, plus any of the literally dozens of compatible clients, and you're good.
posted by deadmessenger at 11:25 AM on May 5, 2013

Response by poster: Hmmm - sounds great apart from the iPhone part - but perhaps that is a wish too far!
posted by dance at 12:29 PM on May 5, 2013

HipChat works great for one-to-one IM and group chat, is inexpensive, and has both a web interface and apps for Android and iPhone.
posted by maxim0512 at 1:39 PM on May 5, 2013

IM+ for android or IOs supports xmpp/jabber too.
posted by ts;dr at 2:44 PM on May 5, 2013

Rather than deploying your own backend, Hosted.IM is free for up to 5 users (and pretty cheap if you grow) - which of the above-recommended IM clients you use is up to you.
posted by panmunjom at 8:13 PM on May 5, 2013

Response by poster: Thanks for the XMPP server suggestions, in particular panmunjom's suggestion of was brilliant. Took a lot of setting up because a) Godaddy SRV propagation took ages and b) the instructions on what needed doing were sparse. But once done it's working beautifully.
posted by dance at 3:09 AM on May 8, 2013

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