Internet Relay Chat (IRC) transfers text messages in a chat room setting, or a “channel”. These chat rooms are accessed through IRC clients installed on the user’s system which communicate with the chat servers. Like other forms of chat we are used to these days, you can discuss topics in a group setting or private messaging.
This guide specifically focuses on the basics of navigating the freenode network and especially handy commands to get you chatting with servers quickly and efficiently.Back to Top
Those 80,000 Freenode users mentioned earlier know a lot about a lot of things and you can chat directly with them. This is a very powerful tool. You will finally be able to answer the age old question: “If you were in a room with (insert awesome person’s name here) right now, what would you ask him/her?” You are now in the room, the room just happens to have no walls and you haven’t had to leave your house.
IRC is where the open source community gathers. You can connect directly with these people for support and information while also contributing to the mission. It allows you to be part of something that people are very passionate about and invested in.
Plus, it’s free and been around approximately forever. IRC is not going anywhere, and neither will you once you get started.Back to Top
Freenode is a specific IRC network that is used to discuss peer-directed projects consisting of over 80,000 users. These users join channels of interest to share their knowledge and seek out the knowledge of others on specific topics under their chosen nicknames.Back to Top
IRC clients are programs that allow you to access the IRC servers.
Client software generally exists across various operating systems, and even within some web browsers. There are a number of clients for both Mac and Windows users and well as mobile. The pretty extensive list can be viewed here and sorted by system. Once selected, you will then want to install the client.Back to Top
BotBot’s role in this beautiful open source world is to act as little butler, of sorts. Once requested by an operator and verified, BotBot will begin logging IRC channels. This can be so handy. All those intelligent discussions taking place that we discussed early will now be recorded and can be referenced for all of time. You won’t have to miss a thing!
He’s here to serve you and make allow you to make the most of your IRC experience. He logs for you night a day, year round. We programmed him not to get tired, so don’t worry about him. He loves working.Back to Top
That's a great question! We've actually written a guide on that as well, you can check it out here.Back to Top
Yes, in a way. As stated on the freenode site, nicknames expire at staff discretion. The general rule that is followed is that an IRC nickname expires after it has not been used for ten weeks plus one additional week per full year of registration, with a maximum of five additional weeks.
Also worth noting here is that nicknames not confirmed by valid email address will be automatically dropped after 24 hours. So, confirm and be active and you will have nothing to worry about!Back to Top
In order to fully experience the true benefits of IRC one must adhere to a basic protocol concerning procedure and conduct.
Lucky for us, the folks over at #Beginner have created a really great summary of such "unspoken" but suggested rules. The freenode site itself has a list of such expectations as well.Back to Top
/join #lincolnloopBack to Top
/partBack to Top
/partallBack to Top
/clear or /clearallBack to Top
Channel modes are set by the channel operator and helps manage the overall functioning of the channel. You can find an incredibly handy list of modes and their meanings here.Back to Top
There are two common reasons for not being able to talk in certain channels. One is that you may have been silenced. If you feel this was done unrightfully, you should contact that channel's operator.
Another reason may be that the mode of the channel is set to +m, which means that only voiced users and operators can speak. You should be notified of the mode upon joining the room.Back to Top
/away set message
/away this bot needs coffee!Back to Top
/me does something
/me waves hello with robot handBack to Top
/nick botbottooBack to Top
/ignore nickname 3
/ignore botbot 3Back to Top
User modes (or umodes) are not to be confused with channel modes, which can only be set by operators. A user mode allows you to specify a number of configurations while in IRC, like how easy it should be for other people to find you.
You can find a list of user modes and their meanings here.
User modes are usually set as follows: /mode nickname +/- mode(s)
/mode botbot -kBack to Top
/msg NickServ SET PASSWORD mynewpassword
/msg NickServ SET PASSWORD iluvbotsBack to Top
A channel operator is the channel's chief administrator. This individual can set the channel topic, approve channel logging with BotBot, set the channel mode, oversee user interactions and ban certain users when necessary, and provide general channel maintenance.
A channel operator is not to be confused with an IRC operator; IRC operators enforce network, rather than channel, rules.Back to Top
When you join a channel it will display which user set the channel topic, in most cases this will be the username of the operator. In addition, the operator will usually have a, "@" symbol by their username in the list of users.
You can also find out who all the operators in a room are with the following command: /msg ChanServ ACCESS #channel LIST
/msg ChanServ ACCESS #lincolnloop LISTBack to Top
Channel operators can select certain users to "have a voice". This "voiced" user will have a "+" symbol by their user name and be able to speak when the +m mode is set. This mode signals a moderated channel, in which only the OP (@) and voices (+) can send messages to the channel while all other messages are blocked.Back to Top
/whois botbotBack to Top
/notify botbotBack to Top
/msg nickname message (will open new window)
/msg botbot Hey, how's it going friend?Back to Top
/notice nickname message
/notice botbot Oh, hi there, nice to meet you.Back to Top
/ping botbotBack to Top
/omsg #lincolnloopBack to Top
freenode allows you to send a message to an offline user. That user will then by notified once he/she comes back online or even get an email notification (to enable these notifications: /msg NickServ SET EMAILMEMOS ON).
To message an offline user: /msg MemoServ SEND nickname message
/msg MemoServ SEND botbot Just wanted to say I Love You.Back to Top
Being a channel operator is a big task, so we are glad you are taking it seriously! IRChelp.org has a well layed out Operator's Guide to help get you started. Also, a fantastically handy list of operator specific commands can be found here, below the general user command section.Back to Top
/topic #channel enter topic
/topic #lincolnloop Lincoln Loop Public Chat https://botbot.me/freenode/lincolnloop/Back to Top
/kick botbotBack to Top
/mode #channel +/- mode(s) set parameters
Note: only certain modes require additional parameters.
You can find an incredibly handy list of modes and their meanings here.
/mode #lincolnloop -psBack to Top
/devoice botbotBack to Top
ChanServ is a "Channel Service" bot. This bot governs the creation and operation of channels on the network and allows any user with a registered nickname to create a channel.
ChanServ also helps protect channel operators from channel take overs by allowing the operator to not always have to be in the channel to maintain their status and helps run for the channel alongside the operator.Back to Top
/msg ChanServ HELP or /msg ChanServ HELP [papameters]
/msg ChanServ HELP REGISTERBack to Top
Taking a look at the freenode philosophy should also help you determine whether or not your potential channel is acceptable on freenode specifically.Back to Top
freenode has you covered when it's time to register your channel, walking through the channel registration process in detail on their staff blog. Before you start, however, you will want to make sure your nickname is registered with NickServ.Back to Top
ChanServ allows operators to set their channels up to do certain things automatically. This "custimization" is done through matching a certain feature with a numbered level through the use of the ChanServ levels command (/cs levels).
To view a list of levels for your channel: /cs levels #channel list
To change levels: /cs levels #channel set option level
You can find a list of default ChanServ levels and their descriptions here.Back to Top