Getting Started with EnThinnai

Congratulations on becoming a registered user of EnThinnai. We are sure that you are attracted by one or more of its features - user-centric, privacy focused and ownership and portability of your data. To deliver on these, it uses some novel concepts and methods and differs from many of the messaging applications you may have used previously. We strongly recommend that you browse through this page to get the most out of this app.

EnThinnai allows you to store your contact information and Availability Status (also known as “mood message”). Your friends,based on the permissions you have set, can access these and can also initiate a real-time session with you.

Your first step is to populate your contact information and Availability Status. Next you will identify your friends by adding them one by one to the Buddy List. As you add a person to the Buddy List, you can specify the contact information that are allowed to access and also the mode(s) of communication session they can initiate with you.

It is probably worth to note the ways EnThinnai is different from other familiar messaging systems.

  1. Your friends can be registered users of your own instance, or another instance of EnThinnai. They may not be a registered user of any instance, but are uniquely identified by their email id. Lastly, they can be an unidentified, generic person. This may be useful if you want to allow a generic visitor to your website contact you to get additional information regarding your product/service, for example.
  2. Just because you have added another registered user to your Buddy List, does not mean that they have added you to theirs.
  3. There is no central repository of all registered users. They have to volunteer that information. You will build your list gradually and incrementally. Since adding a person to your list is just your decision and does not need concurrence from that person, the addition takes effect immediately.
  4. Your instance of EnThinnai is focused only on facilitating your friends to contact you. For sure, you can initiate a session with your friend (if they are a registered user), but then your instance is not involved; you are contacting your friend’s instance directly.
  5. Another unique feature is EnThinnai allows your unregistered friends to temporarily log into your instance as a guest user. If they have done so, you will be able to initiate a session with them.

Now let us go into the individual features in some detail. Once you login you will view the dashboard from which you can access your information. The dashboard has two panes - the left pane lists your friends and your Availability Status. There is also an icon that displays connectivity status to the server. The right pane has tabular view to view different set of information.

Contact Information

Click on the Contact tab, to store all of your contact information here. You can set and modify the permission list for each piece of data.

Buddy List

As we noted previously, you will add your friends one at a time. To add a new friend by clicking on the Add a contact button and filling in the required information in the popup window. You identify the friend by their Web address. If they do not have one, you can supply their email id. As noted previously, there are scenarios where you do not want to specify a particular person. In those cases, you will specify a “fake” web address. If they are a registered user and their web address includes information on their EnThinnai server, then EnThinnai server field will be automatically filled. On the other hand they have a generic WebRTC capability then you can add their Call URL. The name you specify here is just for your reference. They do not have visibility to it. So if you have two friends who are James Smith, you can specify whatever way you distinguish them in your mind. To wit, Shrimpy and Jimbo.

You can group your friends. You can create new groups, edit the name of a group or delete one. Likewise, you can delete a friend or edit their particulars. You can easily move a friend from one group to another by just dragging their name and dropping into the new group.

Availability Status

Availability Status specifies your “availability”. It replaces the traditional Presence which is determined by keyboard status. We recognize that keyboard status is not a reliable indicator to whether you are available for a chat. You might be busily typing away to meet a deadline. This is the precise time you do not want to be disturbed. Also, you might be scheduled to talk to somebody and don’t want others to disturb you. In other words, your Presence could be different for different people. Availability Status takes care of all these scenarios.

You can set a global availability status; you can also set it specific to a group or a friend. Normally, a friend will inherit the status of the group which will inherit the global status. You can change it by hovering over the name of the group or the friend. A changed setting is signified by the presence of an asterisk. To return to the default setting, you will click on the asterisk.

When a friend queries your Availability Status, it is logged. You can view the logs in Status Query Log tab.

Address Book

To view the Contact information of a friend who is a registered user, hover over the friend’s name and click on Click to view contact info link in the resultant popup.

1-1 Messaging

Your friend can initiate a communication session by clicking on a Call URL you have shared with them. You could have shared it explicitly in an email, web page or a business card; or you could have shared it implicitly via an embedded iFrame. You can generate a Call URL or an embed code from Contact/Links tab. More info on how Context is used can be seen here.


Some of the users are designated to be an administrator of an instance. If you are an administrator, you can add new users or deactivate a user from the admin dashboard. You can view the dashboard by clicking on Admin Dashboard link in Status Query Log tab.

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