Chat

The best stand-alone live chat WordPress plugin by a mile – does absolutely everything you could ask for, and more…

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Detail

Welcome to “Chat” — the ultimate WordPress and BuddyPress chat plugin! Getting live chat on your site has never been so easy.

This plugin lets you set up public chat sessions, one-on-one chat session, chat sessions between users on your site, BuddyPress Group chats, BuddyPress Friend chats, and more.

Take a look at the video intro below, and then read on for more details.

 

Features Overview

Here’s a quick overview of some of the highlights for this plugin

  • Gravatar-enabled
  • Emoticon-enabled
  • Records logs
  • Users can login with WordPress, BuddyPress, Twitter, Facebook, or Google+
  • Require users to login with a specific type of ID or leave it up to them
  • Run a chat to answer presale or support questions
  • Control position of chat box – top/bottom/left/right
  • Pop-out/Pop-in ability for all chat windows – lets you break out of the theme
  • Customize chat boxes as you like
  • Insert chat into Posts or Pages with the click of a button
  • Allow users on your network to easily insert chat
  • Integrates with BuddyPress groups and friends
  • Integrates with WPMU DEV Friends plugin
  • One-to-one chats initiated by moderators
  • One-to-one chats between WP users
  • Ban users by email address
  • Block certain words
  • Expand chat boxes to full-screen on tablets and smart phones

 

A Look at “Chat” in Action

Just drop in this plugin, activate it and you can easily run as many live chats as you want, on any page or post on your WordPress, Multisite or BuddyPress site.

There are essentially four different types of chat you can enable:

  • Corner Chat
  • In-Page / In-Post Chat
  • Chat Widget
  • BuddyPress Group Chat (customizable for each group)

Here’s a look at a in-corner chat:

smallchatsample

Including gravatars, emoticons, logs and a raft of customization options – this plugin will cover all your needs.

Users and visitors can login with their WordPress or BuddyPress usernames as public users, and then can also login with Twitter, Google+, or Facebook!

 

Integrate it with BuddyPress:

wordpress-chat-private-buddypress

Use it for BuddyPress Groups:

wordpress-chat-buddypress-group-settings

 

 

Users can choose their status:

wordpress-chat-online-status

Users can initiate in-corner chats with online friends (needs BuddyPress or WPMU DEV Friends):

wordpress-chat-private-chat

SETTTING

And, as we mentioned, before there are almost unlimited options, you can:

  • Enable or disable bottom corner chat
  • Turn chat sounds on or off
  • Enable or disable avatars
  • Enable or disable emoticons
  • Choose to show date or time of posts
  • Set the dimensions of chat windows
  • Select every color of the chat background to match your site
  • Select different fonts and font sizes to match your site
  • Choose to create and display chat logs – great for SEO!
  • Turn on and off login by public users, current WP users, Facebook and Twitter
  • See bottom of this post for the different options windows

And we’re adding in more options all the time, by members requests… so if there’s a feature you’d like to see just drop by the forums or our live support site (which is powered by this plugin :) and ask!

90% of what we develop here at WPMU DEV is requested by our members.

Let’s take a look at some of those settings.

Configure the chat box to appear as you like:

box-appearance

Even control the look of the message itself:

wordpress-chat-settings-site-messages

Position it where you like:

wordpress-chat-settings-site-position

Set up chat so that users can log in with Google+, Facebook, and Twitter

wordpress-chat-settings-common-social-logins

Configure how and were users should appear in the message box:

User-Appear

Block users by blocking IP addresses:

wordpress-chat-settings-site-users-list

Limit number of messages shown, hide messages from appearing on certain URLs, and more:

wordpress-chat-settings-site-advanced

Decide if you want a WYSIWYG button to appear on your editor

Choose which types of pages it should appear on (for posts, pages, products, etc), and for whom (admins, editors, authors, etc.):

 wordpress-chat-settings-page-wysiwyg-settings

 

Here’s a look at the button on the editor:

wordpress-chat-settings-page-wysiwyg-button 

Clicking it gives you another opportunity to customize it as you like:

wordpress-chat-settings-page-wysiwyg-modal

 

Set up chat in a widget if you like:

wordpress-chat-widget

 

PLUS: “Guaranteed To Work” Compatibility with the Latest Version of WordPress, Multisite and BuddyPress.

We guarantee that all our plugins work with the latest version of WordPress, Multisite and, if appropriate, BuddyPress too … no more suffering with broken, poorly coded, free plugins… that’s the WPMU DEV money-back guarantee.

PLUS: Absolutely NO license restrictions

Whether you choose to purchase one plugin or all our plugins and themes, you can use your purchase on as many sites as you like, for as long as you like, no ongoing membership or subscription required, everything at WPMU DEV is 100% GPL.

 PLUS: No subscription or ongoing membership required

Simply join and then cancel your membership, and you can carry on using our plugins and themes for as long as you like, wherever you like. Or, become an ongoing member for more support, updates, new plugins and APIs for videos, our dashboard and more. It’s up to you!

PLUS: Unlimited Live & Q&A Support from the WordPress experts, for anything to do with WordPress at all!

All WPMU plugins and themes come with simple usage instructions, and unlimited member access to support Q&A where our dedicated team of WordPress support and development experts are waiting to answer your questions 24 hours a day – no appointment required!

PLUS: Fully internationalized, fully white-label ready, fully customizable

It’s easy to translate any WPMU DEV plugin or theme, and it’s equally easy to white-label them so your clients or users never know your secret source. As 100% GPL code, you’re even free to edit our plugins and themes as much as you like, no questions asked.

PLUS: More Amazing Premium WordPress Plugins

Buy now and we’ll show you how to upgrade to premium membership and gain access to EVERYTHING we offer: more than 300 plugins and themes, all with the same the updates and support we’ve just promised you.

Join more than 100,000 satisfied customers who trust WPMU DEV as their #1 WordPress resource – it’s like having your own dedicated WordPress team.

Usage

To Get Started:

Start by reading Installing plugins section in our comprehensive WordPress and WordPress Multisite Manual if you are new to WordPress.

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-bottom-corner

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.

To Install:

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.

wordpress-chat-menu

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!”:
    define('WP_MEMORY_LIMIT', '256M');
  • 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.

wordpress-chat-2042-settings-common-polling

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.

wordpress-chat-2042-settings-common-social-logins

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.

wordpress-chat-2042-settings-common-moderation

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.

wordpress-chat-2042-settings-common-url-blocking

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.

wordpress-chat-2042-settings-common-wpadmin

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).

wordpress-chat-2042-settings-common-buddypress

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.

wordpress-chat-2042-settings-site-bottom-corner

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.

wordpress-chat-2042-settings-site-appearance

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.

wordpress-chat-2042-settings-site-position

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.

wordpress-chat-2042-settings-site-messages

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.

wordpress-chat-settings-site-users-list

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.

wordpress-chat-settings-site-authentication

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.

wordpress-chat-settings-site-advanced

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.

wordpress-chat-settings-page-wysiwyg-settings

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.

wordpress-chat-settings-page-wysiwyg-button

wordpress-chat-settings-page-wysiwyg-modal

Chat Widgets

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.

wordpress-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.

wordpress-chat-buddypress-group-settings

Once the chat has been enabled, all group members can participate in group chat sessions.

wordpress-chat-buddypress-group-chat-2

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.

User-Configurable Settings

When your users are logged-in, they can set their online status in the WordPress toolbar on your site.

wordpress-chat-online-status

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.

wordpress-chat-private-chat

Your users can enable or disable toolbar features in their WordPress profile (the default settings are shown below).

wordpress-chat-user-profile-settings

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?

wordpress-chat-private-buddypress

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.

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