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Neil Courtney

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Parachat chat room replacement

by Neil Courtney » Mon Sep 16, 2013 8:45 pm

Perhaps a separate thread on this subject will get a better response to the problems some people seem to be having with the software. So some observations:

I had this thread all ready to hit Submit on just now and I must have done summit stupid and lost it all. Grrrr. So here goes again.

Firstly, my environment. Windows 7 Home Premium (up to date with patches), Firefox v23.0.1 (will probably be v24 soon), Java 7 Update 40 (I found I was using Java 7 Update 25, so have just updated this). Go to Control Panel / Java / About to find out what version you are using. Click the Update tab to update it. I have also tested Google Chrome v29.

Some questions:

1. Robin, what makes you say that Parachat has got buggy recently? What version of Parachat are you running on the server and is it compatible with the version of phpBB that you have? What version of phpBB are you running? Are there any installation parameters for Parachat that can be tweaked? The Parachat Facebook page looks like it is updated frequently so I would not expect a company that has been around for 7 years to release buggy software. Anyone that does this does not stay in business long. https://www.facebook.com/ParaChat

2. Some say that AdBlock Plus add-on causes problems. I am running v2.3.2 of this and have never had a problem. A "must have" as far as I am concerned, for Firefox and Chrome and Safari. I don't know if they do a version for IE. It blocks most ads and reduces your bandwidth significantly (I have no figures for this but running a browser without it significantly slows response time as it loads the flashy adverts that I can do without. Some people say that this is stealing money off the advertisers, but I could not give a toss about this.)

3. I have suggested that Google+ Hangouts might be worth a try but James has said that this is probably not a goer. Why did you say this James? If anyone uses Google+ and wants to try it out send me a PM/email and we can figure out a convenient time to try it out.

4. What environment are you all running? Please report your OS, browser name and version and Java version. Whether or not you are having problems. Maybe we can pin it down to a particular set of OS/Browser version etc.

In my personal opinion I suspect that the source of most of the problems that are being encountered is the lousy bit of software that Micro$oft calls Internet Explorer. It is so hard to use that I gave up trying to figure out how to get it to run Parachat to try and help Jenise with her chat problems. And I like to think I know my way around a computer. This was in IE 8. IE 9/10 might be different, but for some reason MS Update will not allow me to update to IE 9.

My suggestion (still) for those that are having problems (with IE) is to install Firefox (www.mozilla.org), Google Chrome (www.chrome.com), or Apple Safari. Even if it is only used for Chat. I think Chrome and Safari in particular are being used in place of IE more and more recently. Firefox is also loosing ground as a lot of people think that Firefox performance is lagging behind C & S. Current versions do not have this problem in my experience.

If you have managed to read this far without your brain turning to mush, congratulations. I await your feedback. :D
Cheers,
Neil Courtney

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James Roscoe

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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by James Roscoe » Mon Sep 16, 2013 8:48 pm

Thanks Neil!!
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Robin Garr » Mon Sep 16, 2013 11:44 pm

Neil Courtney wrote:1. Robin, what makes you say that Parachat has got buggy recently? What version of Parachat are you running on the server and is it compatible with the version of phpBB that you have?

Neil, quickly told, Parachat has nothing to do with the forum, the server or phpBB. It runs independently online. We simply link to my account on the Parachat site. I say "got buggy" because the guys have been complaining about it more in the past year or two (?). That's really all I know. I'm not doing any tech stuff with chat, just linking to a chat feature that I rent for the gang's enjoyment.

I've invited them to find a better one, and if it's reasonably priced, I'll be happy to switch to it. But I honestly don't have time to install, tweak, modify or otherwise work over a chat room. It has to be black box, online.
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Robin Garr » Mon Sep 16, 2013 11:47 pm

Further to your commentary about browsers:

Image
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Neil Courtney » Tue Sep 17, 2013 12:06 am

Robin Garr wrote:Further to your commentary about browsers:


Nice one Robin! :lol:
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Neil Courtney » Wed Sep 18, 2013 1:39 am

C'mon people! PLEASE help us out here!

OS version
Browser version
Java version
Problem: Yes or no.
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by David M. Bueker » Wed Sep 18, 2013 8:41 am

OS version: Windows 8
Browser version: various (IE 9, Firefox, Chrome)
Java version: 7 update in the 30s somewhere don't recall exactly.
Problem: Yes - the same Java not enabled error I have been getting for 2 years with various other permutations of browsers and operating systems. I was in for a couple of weeks, now it's back to not working.
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Howie Hart » Wed Sep 18, 2013 9:26 am

Windows Vista
Chrome
Java is out of date - I had problems after updating last year and reverted to a previous version (6). When I log on it asks me to either "Update" or "Run this time". I always chooses the latter and get on OK.
Last edited by Howie Hart on Wed Sep 18, 2013 10:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Robin Garr » Wed Sep 18, 2013 9:34 am

Neil Courtney wrote:C'mon people! PLEASE help us out here!

OS version
Browser version
Java version
Problem: Yes or no.

Mac OS X Lion
Chrome Version 29.0.1547.65 (preferred)
Safari Version 6.0.5 (8536.30.1)
No IE on machine
No Firefox on machine
No Java on machine
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Mark Lipton » Wed Sep 18, 2013 12:19 pm

Mac OS X Lion
Firefox 10.5.x
problem: no JRE released for this version of OS X, so no JRE

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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Jenise » Wed Sep 18, 2013 5:59 pm

Windows 8.
IE.
Java--not sure. But the last time I tried to log into chat, I couldn't. Haven't tried again since: have low tolerance for things that don't work.
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Neil Courtney » Wed Sep 18, 2013 8:37 pm

Jenise wrote:Windows 8.
IE.
Java--not sure. But the last time I tried to log into chat, I couldn't. Haven't tried again since: have low tolerance for things that don't work.


One very good reason why I gave up on trying to get IE 8 working here. Firefox/Chrome is worth a try, even if you uninstal it straight away if IE does what you want it to. Or just leave it there just in case you run across a website that IE can not handle. They take very little room.

Windows 8 is looking like one culprit, and the total lack of Java in Lion is certainly a major problem. What was Apple thinking? :?:
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Robin Garr » Wed Sep 18, 2013 11:33 pm

Neil Courtney wrote:What was Apple thinking? :?:

Giving the back of its hand to a malware back door?
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Robin Garr » Wed Sep 18, 2013 11:34 pm

Jenise wrote: have low tolerance for things that don't work.

But ... but ... didn't you say you were using Win 8 and IE? :lol:
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Howie Hart » Thu Sep 19, 2013 1:06 am

FWIW - JuliaB and I were the only ones in Chat tonight from 9:30 to midnight.
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Robin Garr » Thu Sep 19, 2013 12:49 pm

Howie Hart wrote:FWIW - JuliaB and I were the only ones in Chat tonight from 9:30 to midnight.

Can you guys find us a better online chat solution? I'll be happy to pay for it (within reason) and set it up, but I just don't have the time to research it.
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Neil Courtney » Thu Sep 19, 2013 8:51 pm

Had a quick search. Seems many run Java, or are expensive, or give you no idea about price or how they run. Sigh!

Then I tried IE 8 again and it now works, if a bit slowly. ?? WTF??

I have added both http://www.winelowerspage.com and http://*.parachat.com as trusted sites.

Go to Tools / Internet Options / Trusted Sites / Sites / Add this website to the zone:, add each URL and click Add. Un-check the "Require server verification..." if you get a message that the URL is not https:// to add it with http:// instead.

Close IE and restart it. Maybe it now works for you. I am not sure WHICH URL is required, but it worked with wineloverspage, but the Parachat support video for IE said to add parachat.com, so I did. I have no idea what version of IE they were using for the video.

http://service.parachat.com/knowledgeba ... lorer.html

Has anyone else done this, particularly if Chat is not working for you on IE?

If you get any other strange messages, please report these as well.

You might get a bar that says "...blocked Activex modules from running" or some such wording. Click yes to say run this every time from this site.
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Bob Henrick » Sun Sep 22, 2013 5:54 pm

My info

OS = Win7 64bit

FF + version 23.0.1

Java Version = version 7 update 40 AFAIK this is the latest.

I have IE Version 10 But I couldn't get in, so I went to tools and unchecked the ActiveX filtering and then did get in. Still I had to say I accept the responsibility which I think is a Win 7 thingy.

I still have to check the box that says I accept the responsibility....whatever that is.
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Neil Courtney

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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Neil Courtney » Sun Sep 22, 2013 7:47 pm

Thanks Bob. I think the responsibility thing is MS covering their a..e in case you run an application that does bad things to your computer.

Good work. Wonder if this works in Windows 8? Can someone try it out?
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Neil Courtney » Wed Oct 02, 2013 11:19 pm

Nobody has any ideas? I checked a couple of chat groups but they use java. I suspect most will.

Then I will try another one (other than using Firefox or Chrome). How about Twitter? Just checked the #wldg hashtag and found very few people have used it. Even then, I'm not sure why they used it.

Sign on to Twitter (it's free, easy, does not use java, and it can be fun normally but it is easy to ignore it), tweet a message using the #wldg hashtag and everyone else (in the world who is monitoring this tag) will get to see your tweet. Have just sent out a tweet. Those of you who are signed up might like to check for it. One problem is that the tweets will quickly fly off the first screen if there are more than a few chatting. Might be able to live with this.
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Sue Courtney » Thu Oct 03, 2013 1:26 am

I don't have any problems with Parachat. It works for me on IE10 Version 10.0.9200.16686 on Windows 7 Startup Edition and on Google Chrome Version 29.0.1547.76 m, although Chrome asks me if I want to take the risk running the app.
I am getting annoyed with Chrome. It's starting to run slower and slower so changed back to IE as preferred browser today.

I also use Chrome on my MacBook when I use that as Safari didn't like the Java app.

I don't like the idea of Twiiter as a Chat forum. Sorry Neil.
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Neil Courtney » Thu Oct 03, 2013 1:52 am

Apple does not run java on a Macbook as far as I know. Not sure why Chrome would work unless it has it's own java machine for use on Macs. :?:
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Jeff Grossman/NYC » Thu Oct 03, 2013 1:59 am

Windows XP, FireFox 16, Java 1.7.0.13 -- chat works just fine, every time.

Re Parachat: They offer a Flash version. Do all you poor, poor Apple-ites have access to Adobe Flash?

Re IE: Adding parachat.com to the list of trusted hosts is probably the right approach.

Re other services: Trying to wedge our chat into Google+ or Twitter is probably the wrong approach. Are any of these good?: http://www.thefreesite.com/Free_Chat_Services/
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Re: Parachat chat room replacement

by Neil Courtney » Thu Oct 03, 2013 6:16 am

Jeff Grossman/NYC wrote:Windows XP, FireFox 16, Java 1.7.0.13 -- chat works just fine, every time.

Re Parachat: They offer a Flash version. Do all you poor, poor Apple-ites have access to Adobe Flash?

Re IE: Adding parachat.com to the list of trusted hosts is probably the right approach.

Re other services: Trying to wedge our chat into Google+ or Twitter is probably the wrong approach. Are any of these good?: http://www.thefreesite.com/Free_Chat_Services/


I HATE Flash! But if it works...

Probably agree about Twitter and Google+ (still have no idea about how that works, or not.

Will need to look at that list Jeff. Good find.
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