Miranda IM’s Pointless UI “Upgrade”

Miranda IM is a minimal but highly functional multi-protocol chat client for Windows. I have been using it for ages so I was a bit disapointed when I installed the latest build to see my contact list littered with extra buttons and menus. Especially as when I tried clicking on them it seems the icons for these buttons have been chosen at random (A power icon which opens the preferences dialogue? Seriously?). There’s also a thing called “view modes” which is probably very useful if you’re a professional chatter.

Anyway, it’s not hard to get things back the way they were, so I won’t complain too much (though I am a fan of minimalism by default).

It turns out that there are a variety of difference contact list manager plugins and the latest versions of Miranda IM come with four of them installed. To get back to the old-school, minimalist look, just go to the preferences window (you know, press the power button that looks like it’s going to shut the program down or disconnect or something. Alternatively click the menu top-left that has a logo instead of a word (probably to make it awkward for people who are – like me – trying to explain things the old fashioned way – you know, using words and that…)), select “plugins” from the menu on the left. Here you have a list of all installed plugins. It’s the ones that start “clist_” that we’re interested in. We only need one, and clist_classic is the minimalist one, so select that and click “ok” and restart Miranda IM.

There are three other clist plugins:


Is fucking ugly in the way that the free software you get with printers usually is – all custom made so it doesn’t fit in with anything else. Gives the contact list a translucent border and title bar as if I’m using Windows 7, even though I’m on Windows XP. Also adds a selection of different – though equally ambiguous – icons to the top of the window.

Multi-window apparently. I can only see one window though.

That said, Miranda IM is still my favourite chat client and is miles ahead of any other I’ve used.


About Mr Chimp

I make music, draw pictures, browse the internet, programme, and make sweet, sweet cups of tea until the early hours.
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