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5 Reasons Digsby Is a Must-Have IM Client

David Pierce 17-03-2009

If you’re a long-time MUO reader, you’ll know we’re fans of the multi-platform IM client Digsby. We’ve showed you some cool features, and even how to make it better looking.


Today, I’m going to put in my own plug for Digsby, an application I use every day, by showing you six things Digsby can do that will save you time, energy, and RAM space.

Digsby has come to replace my use of several other applications – no longer do I need a Gmail window, Twitter window, Facebook window, and IM window open all at the same time. Instead, I just use Digsby!

Here are five features that make Digsby the only application you’ll want to always be open, besides just being the best multi-IM client out there:

Email Checking


Got a POP or IMAP email? Of course you do. That means you can use your email with Digsby. Setting up Gmail, Hotmail, or Yahoo with Digsby is incredibly easy; others are a little harder, but still entirely possible.

Once you set it up (under “Digsby” and then “My Accounts”), Digsby lets you check, read, and respond to your email without ever leaving your IM window. Mark emails as read, write them, or just head over to your Inbox to check them out- all using Digsby. I used to always have a Gmail window open to make sure I never missed critical email – now all I need is Digsby.



After spending forever looking for the perfect Twitter client, I’ll tell you this- it’s not Digsby. But what Digsby is perfect for is reading Tweets. It’s a great way to stay on top of your replies and direct messages, as well as write tweets quickly. Digsby’s not the solution for power Twitter users, but it’s a great way to stay on top of all the Tweeting you do on a daily basis.



Just for the record, I love the new Facebook layout. But that’s beside the point. Using Digsby, you can do just about anything you would on Facebook, from right within the Digsby interface. You’ll be alerted when you have a new message, wall post, alert or notification. One click in Digsby, and you can see all the things waiting for you on Facebook. One more, and you’re sent right to a Facebook window within the Digsby application. Update your status easily, answer your wall posts, and stay on top of your social networking, all from within Digsby.

One of Digsby’s newest features is the addition of Facebook Chat. Now, you can chat with all your online Facebook friends from within Digsby. I love the idea of Facebook Chat (being able to connect in real-time with your friends on Facebook, which I have more of than IM buddies), more than I like the execution on the Facebook site itself. Digsby does a great job of using your friends list, and integrating it into its fantastic IM client to make chatting with your Facebook friends better and easier.



Digsby’s options for social networking go far beyond Facebook. You can use Digsby to check your LinkedIn or MySpace account, and receive notifications, send messages, and interact with your network right from within Digsby. Each account gets an icon in your Windows system tray, and one click brings up a pop-up window letting you manage your social networks just as you would in a browser.

Got a new message? Digsby tells you about it, then lets you respond to it all without leaving the Digsby interface. It’s simple to use, not a memory hog, and an awesome way to manage multiple online identities from one place.

The Little Things


My favorite thing about Digsby is that its team pays such close attention to the little things: the small features that you never noticed before, but can’t live without once you start using Digsby.

My personal favorite is the pop-up notification box: when you get an IM, a pop-up comes up. Not exactly revolutionary, but what IS awesome is that you can respond from within the popup. No switching back and forth between IM windows and other applications – just type in the popup, and it goes away once it has been idle for a few seconds.

There are tons of features like this within Digsby: mass-changing of your status and away message, easy hiding and showing of the application, and endless customization of how it looks. I spent a while getting my Digsby to look exactly how I want it to, and big props to Digsby for giving you so many options.

What’s your IM client of choice? Why?

Photo: BigBlue

Explore more about: Chat Client, Facebook, Google Hangouts, Instant Messaging, Twitter.

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  4. Autoknowing
    October 28, 2009 at 9:05 pm

    I just installed it and LOVE it. But as someone said above I REALLY miss the ability to chat while invisible like I could in MSN. It is almost a deal-breaker for me, but I really needed a good multi-account client and this is the answer.

  5. Robomaster
    October 20, 2009 at 6:09 pm

    While I don't use Digsby half as much as I used to, you're right - Digsby is the best.

  6. Chris
    March 19, 2009 at 9:31 pm

    Just giving it a try. Looks pretty good at first.

    I only have MSN, Facebook and Twitter. MSN I can just use Messenger, and social networks I don't mind going on the websites, so I think I'll be removing it soon.

    Was disappointment the amount of extras (toolbars, auto tweet, etc.) I had to untick.

    Thanks for the post though.

    • Robomaster
      October 20, 2009 at 6:12 pm

      Digsby removed almost all the junk they wanted you to install - It's usable again!

  7. ASR
    March 19, 2009 at 10:39 am

    Pixamsn is the lightest msn client there is. And that's all I need, so far.

  8. Dave Drager
    March 18, 2009 at 8:04 am

    Don't get me wrong, I love digsby as a client. With recent incarnations of the installer they try to get you to install 'trialware'. Although I concur that they need to make a profit, I would much rather see an alternate 'paid' edition without the spyware.

    That being said, you can download the installer only direct from their site:

  9. Deepak T
    March 18, 2009 at 2:45 am

    I would also like to suggest Pidgin. I've used Digsby before. Back then, it had problems with the file transfer option. I loved the eye-candy & the pop-up.. But, I'm sticking with Pidgin simply because it works without any hiccups.

  10. Ed
    March 17, 2009 at 11:58 pm

    Is there any way to grt that pop up notification to stick around longer?It disappears much too fast!

  11. Ajay
    March 17, 2009 at 10:51 pm

    One main reason not to use Digsby is the installer. I spent a good portion of my time installing Digsby, because they won't distribute a complete install. The installer is filled with so much crapware that if you are not careful, you'll have a badly infected computer.

    That's why I prefer Pidgin. It supports everything I need, is perfectly decent on resources. Available as a Portable version, open source and doesn't install anything extra on my computer

  12. Vadim P.
    March 17, 2009 at 6:50 pm

    Pidgin for nown. It supports all IM protocols I need, has a windows version that I can recommend to friends, and is open-source - so I don't need to worry about my semi-sensitive going through a shady third party.

  13. Arkane
    March 17, 2009 at 3:45 pm

    Hey I been reading the terms of service for Digsby, This thing is comes across as a serious piece of Spyware/Adware.

    It reminds me of zango and that's not a good thing!!!

  14. Mahmoud
    March 17, 2009 at 3:28 pm

    Thanks for the article .

    It is a good one , the only missing feature is that i can't talk while being invisible when using my hotmail account.

  15. jeff
    March 17, 2009 at 3:19 pm

    i recently made the switch to mac and one of the biggest things i miss is digsby. It needs to get support for mac soon or else i may start to love adium more.

  16. Michael
    March 17, 2009 at 1:57 pm

    Digsby all the client to every come out. Trillian & Pidgon are nothing compared to this.

    chtrich - no games yet unfortunately. But this is great for at work instead of having 3 clients running.

  17. Rick
    March 17, 2009 at 12:58 pm

    Multi-platform? I took a look on their site, and it's only available for Windows right now! Looks like Mac and Linux support is coming soon. When that happens, though, I'll be sure and check it out.

    • pixelsnader
      November 11, 2009 at 5:35 pm

      They mean IM platforms. Digsby will do MSN, AIM, Yahoo, etcetera.

  18. chtrich
    March 17, 2009 at 12:43 pm

    I use MSN Messenger because I always have. Can Digsby play the msngr games?

    • Chris
      March 19, 2009 at 9:25 pm

      No, it can't.

  19. twitterfriend
    March 17, 2009 at 12:41 pm

    I can't believe you like this app. It sends spam tweets over one's own twitter account, if you dont find deep in the settings, where you have to switch it off.

    The twitter part itself is very inconvenient und leaves a lot of space for improvement. You have no timeline constantly open, but have to click each time to open your timeline up.

    I was very disappointed with digsby, so where lots of people I talked to about it on twitter.

    • Stefan Neagu
      March 17, 2009 at 1:31 pm

      I have to agree with you; unfortunately Digsby is crippled by inconvenient and sometimes disturbing addons. I remember having to uncheck 3 crapware/malware programs that wanted to install along with Digsby and a Yahoo toolbar... . a Yahoo toolbar ...

  20. Alamgir Kahn
    March 17, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    I'd always like Trillian until I found Digsby. The other one I've been playing around w/ is Pidgin.