The question (here) answers the question about whether or not Empathy can be replaced with Pidgin.

What it doesn't answer is whether or not removing Empathy (via Software Centre) will break Ubuntu 11.10 because of the obvious integration (like statuses in messaging menu).

I prefer Pidgin's (more accurate) notifications to Empathy's, hence the desire to change.

Can I safely remove Empathy?

2 Answers 2


Yes you can safely remove Empathy. It will not break anything also remove whatever leftovers Empathy leaves.

  • Thanks. And if I wanted Empathy back, then would it install everything as if were never removed to begin with? (Such as the messaging menu extras.)
    – Gonzoza
    Jan 6, 2012 at 10:54
  • Yes just Install Empathy from the Software Center and it will pull back whatever was installed by default. Jan 6, 2012 at 10:55

no i have removed but nothing happened but no need to remove empathy to have desktop integration with pidgin.

i had this somewhere on internet and it worked like a charm for me : sudo apt-get install pidgin ( if not installed)

  • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:webupd8team/gnome3
  • sudo apt-get update
  • sudo apt-get install gnome-shell-extensions-pidgin
  • sudo apt-get install gnome-tweak-tool ( if u have not installed aldready)

open advance setting in gnome shell and just make sure that the pidgin-integration-extension in shell extension is in on position. if it is in on then every thing going to be fine as it is not supported on some gnome-shell , i f it is not in on position or if is somewhat like disabled or if u are not able to toggle it to on/off position then i think integration will not be possible(not sure) , try to update ur system and try again.

if the pidgin-integration-extension is running fine i.e. it is on position then :

press alt + f2 then type r and press enter or just log out and log in to restart shell

remove empathy : sudo apt-get purge empathy ( not necessary )

*note : to avoid getting both the standard Pidgin notifications and the new ones, in Pidgin select Tools > Plugins and uncheck the box next to "Libnotify Popups".

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