From St. Louis Hackerspace Wiki
Internet Relay Chat or IRC is a form of real-time Internet text messaging.
Many IRC questions can be answer by browsing IRCHelp.org/
To get registered with an IRC server (which some servers require)
- IRSSI - A cross-platform IRC client. Ideal for Linux and UNIX. Plugins are written in PERL. Run it in a bash shell.
- mIRC - The de facto IRC client for Windows.
- X-Chat - A cross-platform IRC client. There are drawbacks to using X-chat. Like that it has a GUI.
- BitchX - An old favorite among hackers. Particularly those who use UNIX.
- AndChat - An IRC program for Android-enabled devices.
- Chatzilla - An Add-On plugin for Mozilla Firefox.
- Mibbit - A web-based IRC program. Some IRC Networks don't like users to use this.
- CGI:IRC - Written in PERL, this web-based IRC program has been around longer than Mibbit has and it is Open Source (something Mibbit isn't.)
Because IRSSI can be difficult for users who are acustom to using the mouse, here are a few things to know.
- Page Up and Page Down scroll the message queue (the top window) where as Arrow Up and Arrow Down scroll the message window
- The /away command needs a reason to mark yourself as away (i.e. /away some_message.
- You don't need a reason to mark yourself back. to mark yorself back, simply type /away
- Logging in is easy if you use the command prompt. For example irssi -c irc.freenode.net -n YourNick -w YourPassWord.
Most IRC servers use some form of IRCd.
Most IRC networks run on port 6667...so if your company Internet doesn't allow you to stray beyond the confines of port 80, your not going to be able to use it. Not even if you use a web client.
- Freenode - irc://chat.freenode.net - An IRC Network dedicated to free and open projects. But also alot of geeky stuff. Registration is required.
- DALNet - irc://irc.dal.net - One of the largest IRC Networks. Registration Required.
- EFNet - irc://irc.efnet.org - One of the oldest IRC Netorks. Registration Required?
- QuakeNet - irc://irc.quakenet.org - The largest IRC Netowrk, mostly gamers. Registration might be required. There is no NickServ on this network.
- Rizon - irc://irc.rizon.net - Mostly anime fansubbers and warez. All sorts of electronic mischief that the authories now know about.
- Undernet - irc://irc.undernet.net - One of the youngest IRC networks.
You can find IRC channels that pique your interest using SearchIRC.com
- #archreactor on Freenode - The channel for Arch Reactor
- #hackerspaces on Freenode - The channel for any Hackerspaces group.
Finding Channels on Freenode
To find channels use
/msg alis list <pattern> [<options>] # <pattern> may contain * and ? wildcards # <options> are: # -min <n> find channels with <n> or more users. # -max <n> find channels with no more than <n> users in it. # -skip <n> skip first <n> matches # -show [m|t] show modes/topicsetter # -mode <+|-|=><modes> modes set/unset/equal # -topic <pattern> topic matches pattern # Example: # /msg alis LIST * -min 50 show all channels with at least 50 people in it.
Wikipedia has a list of most of the IRC commands described here.
But as a quick note, if you want Join room you can simply use /j #channel_name.
(If someone would like to develop this section, please feel free to do so.)
The following is a short list ot software to write bots for IRC rooms. In order to have them work, it is ideal that the IRC you are using have some kind of shell access. Running them is a different story as most ChanOps (channel operators) and NetOps (network operators) might not approve.
There are other bot softwares out there. Some written in Perl and Python.
Some servers allow users to take advantage of bouncer software to mask their IP address.
CTCP and DCC
Client-To-Client Protocol (or CTCP) is generally used to ask questions about what another user is using. It should be noted, that if you CTCP command, that the other person will know that you are doing it. Generally, these things are kind of annoying in regular chat. CTCP commands do not describe WHOIS information which is generally more useful and general doesn't make the person who you are trying to get information about feel like someone is trying to break in to their compter. (It doesn't but newer users might feel like that what is going on.)
Direct Client-to-Client (or DCC) protocol is a different story. In order to initial a DCC command, a CTCP command must be initiated first in most scenarios. DCC allows for some form of Peer-to-Peer file transfer. DCC is kind of complex. (If someone can describe it better, feel free to edit this article.)