Create chat rooms, activate site wide corner chat for ongoing community conversation or schedule live support sessions for high-end real-time support.
How will you use Chat?
Style To Fit Your Site
Adjust Chat’s design options to match your theme. Separate style controls for embedded chats, the Chat widget and corner chat makes it easy to customize and style match.
Choose just about everything – position, size, border, color, font, automated messages, order, buttons.
User Role Access Control
Create chat rooms or activate site wide corner chat for real-time talk all the time. Then control what user roles can see and access chat.
Open Chat to the public or use it exclusively for members.
Give users a faster way to connect and make it easier to join the conversation with social login.
Not everyone wants create an account on every site they visit. Allow users to join a Chat using Facebook, Twitter or Google+.
Log, Moderate and Block
When using chat for support you’ll love the log feature. Revisit a conversations even after the session is closed.
Keep the conversation on topic, hide messages from public view. And if a user gets out of hand block access by email address or IP. Chat even offers a way to block specific words so you can keep it PG.
BuddyPress and Friends
Running your own social network with BuddyPress or Friends? Use Chat and give groups live chat or activate direct messaging between friends.
Chat will even allow you to toggle availability and show avatars of logged in users.
Chat From Anywhere
Put a chat box wherever you need it. Add corner chat to both the front and back end of your site, embed in posts and pages, and use the built-in Chat widget to add Chat in your sidebar.
From public real-time conversation to community support chat rooms, Chat keeps the conversation live.
To Get Started:
WordPress Chat by WPMU DEV is a fully-configurable chat plugin that includes the following types of chat instances you can enable on your site:
- Corner chat
- In page/post chat
- Chat widget
- BuddyPress Group chat (configurable in each group)
WordPress Chat can be integrated with any theme!
You can have multiple instances of any of the above chat types running simultaneously, even on the same page.
1. Download the plugin file
2. Unzip the file into a folder on your hard drive
3. Upload the /wordpress-chat/ folder and all its contents to the /wp-content/plugins/ folder on your site
4. Login to your admin panel for WordPress or Multisite and activate the plugin. There are no network settings for this plugin. Network-activating it will simply activate it on all sites in your network, and chat will function independently on each site.
5. Once installed and activated, you will see a new menu item in your admin: Chat.
Before you begin
It’s important to note that self-hosted chat functionality can be very resource-intensive. While we’ve made every effort to ensure that the load this plugin can put on your server is kept to a minimum, there are a couple of things to keep in mind:
- If you have not yet increased the memory allocated to WordPress on your site (standard is 40M), now may be a good time to do so. Add the following to your wp-config.php file, before the line that says “That’s all, stop editing!”:
- If you’re on a shared hosting plan, you may want to consider upgrading. Popular sites with lots of traffic and numerous chat instances running simultaneously can quickly tax your server. Contact your host for more on this if you notice things get a bit sluggish.
Configuring Common Settings
While each type of chat has its own settings page, there are some things to configure first that will apply to every chat instance on your site. Let’s do that now. Go to Chat >Settings Common.
The first settings you will see under the Poll Intervals tab enable you to set how often the plugin will poll your server for new chat content, and select the polling method to use.
The following 3 tabs are where you enter your Google+, Facebook and Twitter app credentials so your users can login to chat with their favorite service (easy-to-follow instructions are included in the settings for each service). You can even fine-tune the chat types where you want to allow social logins, but we’ll get to that in a bit.
The next 2 tabs in the common settings enable you to configure global moderation options. You can block troublesome users from participating in chats using their IP or email addresses, and even block specific words to keep profanity to a minimum. You can also customize the messages that will display to users when any blocking occurs in a chat session.
The settings under the Blocked URLs tab enables you to restrict or allow where chat instances can be displayed. There are options for both the admin area and the front-end of your site.
Settings under the WP-Admin tab enable you to set preferred defaults for your users just in case they forget to do it themselves in their profiles.
Finally, the BuddyPress tab has a few settings so you can set some site-wide defaults for BuddyPress Groups (note that these settings will not appear if you do not have BuddyPress active on your site).
Configuring the Corner Site Chat
Right, we’re done with the common settings. Now let’s move on to the specific chat types.
The settings for page and widget chats are very similar, with one exception. But we’ll get to that when we get to in-page chats. The same set of options are available for the corner (site) chat, which has a few extra goodies of its own. So we’ll start by taking a closer look at configuring the Site Chat instances. Once you’re familiar with those settings, you’ll be able to easily configure the page and widget chats.
Go to Chat > Settings Site. The 1st tab has settings so you can enable or disable the bottom corner chat on both the front-end and admin areas of your site, and set a custom title for the chat box if you want one.
The settings under the 2nd tab give you full control over the appearance of the corner chat box so you can easily style it to match the style of your site.
Settings under the 3rd tab enable you to precisely position the chat box exactly where you want it. That’s right, you’re not limited to only the bottom-right corner. You can set it to appear at top-left, top-right, bottom-left or bottom-right, and even space it out away from the edges so it doesn’t interfere with, or hide, any of your other site content. These are the only settings & options that you won’t see for the other chat types, because they are not needed.
The next 2 tabs control how user-entered messages appear in the chat box. You’ll notice that there are specific settings and options for both the conversation area and message input area. Not only can you style those areas, you can also select to use avatars or usernames in the conversation, enable date & time stamps, emoticons and more.
Under the Users List tab, you can enable and configure exactly how and where users should appear in the chat window. You can position the list where you want it, and here again, you can choose between avatars or usernames.
Remember we mentioned that you can fine-tune the social login methods to use in each chat type? The Authentication tab is where you can do that. Only methods that are actually available on your site will display and can be selected. For example, if you haven’t yet set up your social logins in Settings Common, those checkboxes won’t be clickable here.
Under this tab, you can also customize what should display to not-logged-in users, and select the user roles you want as chat moderators.
The final tab, Advanced, has some additional settings that enable you to limit the number of messages shown in a chat, customize some session messages and set any URLs where you don’t want chats to display.
Something Extra for In-Page Chats
We mentioned there’s something extra about the in-page chat settings (and you’re gonna love this). Go to Settings > Page and check out the WYSIWYG Button tab.
The WYSIWYG Button tab is where you select the post types you want the chat button to be available on, and who can use it to insert chat instances in those post types. You can select from all the post types that are active on your site. This is great if you have a movie database, an event directory, etc, and you want to create specific discussion rooms for each.
When you create or edit any post type that you have selected, you will see a chat icon in the tray of the visual editor. Click the icon, and a nice modal pops up with all the customization options to make every chat unique.
You can also activate chat boxes in any sidebar on your site simply by adding a widget. Go to Appearance > Widgets, and drag the WPMU DEV Chat Widget to your chosen sidebar. You can even override some general options you set in the Settings Widget page for each chat widget.
BuddyPress Group Integration
Oh yes, we did! WordPress Chat is fully integrated with BuddyPress Groups. Any group administrator can choose to enable the chat which is visible only to group members by visiting Admin > Group Chat and ticking the box. All the familiar configuration options are available for each group chat.
Once the chat has been enabled, all group members can participate in group chat sessions.
WPMU DEV Friends Integration
If your site doesn’t require the full-fledged community features of BuddyPress, you’ll be happy to know that WordPress Chat also fully integrates with our Friends plugin.
Integration with the Friends plugin couldn’t be any easier either: simply install and activate it, and voilà! You’re done.
When your users are logged-in, they can set their online status in the WordPress toolbar on your site.
Users can also initiate private in-corner chats with their online friends via the toolbar. Note that this requires either BuddyPress or the WPMU DEV Friends plugin.
Your users can enable or disable toolbar features in their WordPress profile (the default settings are shown below).
Plus, if you have BuddyPress active on your site, users can initiate private chats with their friends directly from the friends list in their BuddyPress profile. Cool huh?
Notes and Info:
If enabling WP Defender’s “Prevent PHP execution” option breaks down WP Chat, go to “Chat -> Settings common -> Poll Intervals” page and change value for “Select Polling Source Type” option from “Plugin AJAX” to “WordPress AJAX”.
We hope you and your users will enjoy WPMU DEV Chat and have loads of fun getting all social on your site! If you run into any snags, just head on over to the forums. Our stellar support team (and members!) are standing by to help you get things up and running smoothly.
Get your community talking.
- Display avatars
- Gravatar enabled
- Emoticon enabled
- Chat history logs
- Login with WordPress
- Twitter login
- Facebook login
- Google+ login
- Require specific login type
- Host group pre-sales or support sessions
- Chat box position controls
- Pop-out for chat windows
- Customize chat boxes
- Insert chat into Posts or Pages
- WordPress, Multisite and BuddyPress Ready
- WPMU DEV Friends plugin integration
- Direct Messaging with BuddyPress or Friends
- Ban users by email address
- Block certain words
- Fullscreen on tablets and smartphones
- Enable bottom corner chat
- Chat sound control
- Show/hide date and time
- Set chat window dimensions
- Color selector
- Select fonts
- Set font size
- Chat logs