Ralph Johns

iChat Information Pages

Version 4


iChat Icon

These iChat 4 pages are coloured Gray and have the iChat 4 icon on them that was in use at the time, so you know where you are. The icon differs little from the Version 3 version.


iChat (Version 4) How-to Send Files and Pictures


There are ways to Send files without a Chat in progress and and ones with one in operation. There are means to Start from the Menus and from the Buddy List. There are particular differences in sending Pictures in chats.

Sending Files and Pictures

Sending files

You can send files by dragging the required file to the Text Chat window at the Text Field point and dropping it there. It also pays to click on the Text Entry field to release the item (take off the blue outline). You can add text to it, as you want, which will appear in the Bubble alongside the File.

The file will appear in the chat as a document type icon with it's name. The file can be of any type: a Word Doc or Text Edit or Movie or Picture. Larger files of several Mbs like large Pics or Movies will take several minutes to Send and appear at the other end.

Sending Pictures

Desktop pic as Pic in chat

Pictures sent this way are treated differently in that they will actually display in the Chats. The size of the display is dependent on the Chat window size but is dynamic so you and your Buddy can drag their respective window bigger and the Pic will expand proportionately. The only limit then is how big you can get the Chat window. If the Chat window exceeds the original size of the pic the pic stops expanding. Pictures with higher pixels resolutions than the 72dpi of a Screen will be the hardest to fit in if the pic is also large in area. This picture is my current Desktop Pic and is a 500 x 375 Pixels at 100dpi pic which would normally be about 4 times the size of the actual picture above.

What to do if you get a File or Picture in a Chat .

If it is a File then Double click on it and a dialogue box asking for acceptance will open. The file will then download to your Desktop. Once Pictures are displayed, you can drag it to the Desktop.

If you save your chats the Pictures and icons of files will still appear and pictures will still be scalable but you can no longer drag them to the Desktop.


There is of course a Menu item to do the same thing.

Also with or without opening a Chat window you can drop the file on a Buddy's name in the Buddy List. However sending a picture this way will not always display in the Chat if a Text chat is going on at the same time. It will get sent as a File.

NOTES:- You can not send files to multiple Buddies at once such as in a Group Chat or Chatroom.

Pic as Background

Missing the Text Field with a Picture File and dropping in the actual Chat window will make that picture a Background. Small pics will tile to file the space. Other larger pics may only show you a part of the pic. It can be Set or Cleared at the Bottom of the View Menu when the Chat window is the Front one. Once set it will be there for All Subsequent Chats until you change it.



Next - How-to Use the Menus

©  Ralph Johns. Created November 2008

Information Block

This site is about iChat from Version 1 through to iChat 4.x.x

It has a mixture of basic info and problem solving help.

The sections below will change for Specifics about info on the page on view

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About This Page

Many iChat functions are able to be done from the Buddy List itself or the Menu items and nowhere is this more plain than when sending Files or Pictures and the alternatives.


Confirmed to work with Win/IE 5.5 and later (should work in 5.0, but not confirmed), Firefox 2, Safari 3, Opera 9, iCab 3.02 and later, Mac/IE 5, Netscape 6 and later

Old browsers (IE version 4 or earlier, Netscape 4 or earlier) should only see a text-based page which, while not the prettiest option, is still entirely usable.