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Using the SRP Chat

This article explains how to use SRP's Chat, and gives detailed step-by-step instructions on how to connect to the chat. The chat system uses Freenode's IRC network, details can be found below.

The Chat link on the straightrazorplace.com menu will send you to the webchat client on freenode. You need to pick a nickname that is not being used on freenode (the SRP username appended with "SRP", e.g. Joe-SRP seems to be a popular option).  You can also register (protect with a password) a nickname with freenode and it will remain reserved for you as long as you authenticate with it in the chat periodically.

If you're a bit more adventurous and/or you would like to have a better, more flexible connection to our chat, you can connect to it via different IRC client. For more general information on IRC - go here. The specifics for the SRP chat are:

IRC Server: chat.freenode.net port 6667 or 6697 for ssl
Channel: ##srp


While there are usually quite a few people around at other times, too, they may be idle or away from their keyboards. Please be patient or come back a bit later.

Contents

Using freenode's IRC server

SRP uses the freenode IRC network freenode, formerly known as Open Projects Network, is a popular IRC network used to discuss peer-directed projects.[1] Their servers are all accessible from the domain name chat.freenode.net, which sends the users to the server in rotation that is best able to accept new connections.[2] freenode is the largest FOSS IRC network in existence, encompassing around 100,000 users and 40,000 channels.[3]

To use the chat to its full extent, you may want to read freenode's documentation, especially the freenode knowledge base.

Please be advised that freenode is not affiliated with SRP. Therefore, your SRP login credentials will not work in the Chat. If you want to register your nickname with freenode, please use the commands laid out in the FAQ.

Connecting to ##srp using Pidgin

After thorough testing, we recommend using the Pidgin IRC client for connecting to ##srp. Pidgin (formerly named Gaim) is a multi-platform instant messaging client. The software has support for many commonly used instant messaging protocols, allowing the user to log into various different services from one application.[4]

Installation

Installing Pidgin

First, get the latest version of Pidgin from www.pidgin.im and install it.

Installing the Pidgin Purple Plugin Pack (optional!)

We recommend installing the plugin pack, as it contains many useful add-ons to Pidgin. However, this step is not necessary in order to run Pidgin!

  1. Next, go to http://plugins.guifications.org/trac/downloads and grab the latest Purple Plugin Pack for your platform (For Linux, the major distributions have packages in their repositories called pidgin-plugin_pack (for Pidgin only) or purple-plugin-pack (for all user interfaces that use purple) but you may have to compile the plugin yourself using the downloads on the site) This is a pile of plugins for Pidgin, and whilst you can use IRC without it, we recommend it.
  2. From the Plugin Pack, get the irchelper plugin and install it.
    1. For Windows, this means copying the irchelper.dll file into your plugins directory, probably c:\Program Files\Pidgin\plugins.
    2. For Linux - package managers will have auto installed them or you'll have to compile it.

Setting up Pidgin

  1. Start Pidgin. You will get a screen like Image 1. Add an account as shown in Image 2.
  2. If you installed the plugin pack previously, go to Tools -> Plugins and activate the IRC Helper plugin as shown in Image 3. Otherwise, skip this step. Choose 'IRC' as the protocol, and 'irc.freenode.net' as the server. Choose a nick name. (If you have registered with freenode before, use your nick name and jump to 'Automatically identifying yourself').
  3. Click 'Save', and Pidgin will connect you to the server as shown in Image 6.

Odds are on the first person to talk to you will be NickServ, FreeNode's all-seeing eye of nicks, who will complain about your nick. This is because, on freenode at least, you should always identify yourself. This helps prevent fraud and nick-stealing, and is so easy you might as well.

Registering with NickServ

In the conversation window (or 'tab') that NickServ opened, type register <nickname> <password> <email address>, replacing the variables with your own nickname, password, and email address. If you do not have such a window, type: /msg nickserv register <nickname> <password> <email address>. freenode will then send you a confirmation email with a nick you need to click to finish the registration process.

You will then be able to identify yourself with 'identify <nickname> <password>'. In order to avoid doing that manually every time, use the following instructions to automate it.

Go to Accounts -> Manage and modify the IRC account. Under the 'Advanced' tab, enter 'NickServ' for 'Auth Name' and your password for 'Nick Password'. Now, whenever you connect to IRC, Pidgin will automatically identify you. You must have installed the irchelper plugin in order for this to work!

Joining the Chatroom

In order to speak to anyone, you must join the ##srp channel.

To do this:

  1. Goto Buddies -> Add Chat.
  2. Make sure the IRC account is selected, and enter '##srp' for 'Channel'.
  3. If you wish to automatically connect to the room when you sign in to IRC, click the 'Autojoin' checkbox.
  4. Finish by clicking 'Add'.

Connecting to ##srp using other clients

Colloquy (Mac OS)

This is a basic tutorial showing you how to use Colloquy on a Mac to access the SRP IRC chat.

  1. Download the latest Colloquy here and install it on your Mac.
  2. Run Colloquy for the first time.
  3. Follow the instructions below.
Now when you run Colloquy it will automatically log you into the SRP chat room.

irssi

irssi is the IRC client of choice for many Un*x users. It is small, highly extensible, and works well with screen. You might find IRSSI Config useful: "This script will generate an irssi config file for you which will autoconncet to all your servers and channels on startup."

Installing irssi and connecting to ##srp on freenode

irssi comes pre-compiled for most Linux and Unix distributions. You may want to install the irssi-scripts package, too.

In order to connect to the freenode network, just follow the two easy steps below. Detailed instructions are below the screen shots.

Configuring irssi for ##srp on freenode

Before you begin, read the irssi Startup Guide. It will answer most of your questions about irssi (but not, mind you, IRC in general).

To join ##srp in an easy way, follow these steps:

  1. When connected, use the following command to set your nick: /set nick yournick.
  2. Make freenode a part of your irssi networks: /server add -auto -network Freenode irc.freenode.net 6667. The -auto command is optional and will automatically connect you to that server when irssi starts.
  3. Associate your nick with the freenode network: /network add -nick yournick Freenode.
  4. Add the ##srp channel to your list of channels to connect to automatically on startup: /channel add -auto ##srp Freenode.
  5. Keeping your nick hidden to enhance privacy on freenode: /msg nickserv set hidemail on.
  6. Identify with freenode's nickserve automatically: /network add -autosendcmd “/msg nickserv identify password ;wait 2000″ Freenode.

ksirc

KSirc is the default KDE IRC client. It supports scripting with Perl and has a lot of compatibility with mIrc for general use. The ksirc handbook will get you started quickly. The commands needed to join ##srp are below.

XChat

This is a basic tutorial showing you how to use XChat on a PC to access the SRP IRC chat.

  1. Download the latest XChat here and install it on your PC.
  2. Run XChat for the first time.
  3. The XChat: Network List window pops up.
  4. See picture 1 below: On this page, put in the Nick name you want to use (your SRP nickname), as well as filling in the Second and Third Choices. You may put in your given name in the Real name area. You can also select the "Skip network list on startup" option.
  5. In the "Networks" area, scroll down to FreeNode and click on it. Then click the "Edit..." button.
  6. The XChat: Edit FreeNode window pops up. See picture 2 below: On this page, select the "Auto connect to this network at startup" option, and beside "Favorite channels:" put in ##srp.
  7. Click the "Close" button - closing the Edit FreeNode window.
  8. Click the "Connect" button - closing the Network List window and this should connect you to the chat!
Now when you run XChat it will automatically log you into the SRP chat room.

Chatzilla (Firefox)

  1. If you all ready use FireFox then all you have to do is go to https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/16 and install the add on chatzilla.
  2. Once it is installed go to tools and Chatzilla will be one of the selections under "Tools."
  3. Click on "freenode".
  4. Change your nickname: type "/nick nickname".
  5. It will ask you to register your nickname to do that, type "/msg nickserv register <your-password> <your-email>" just like this "/msg nickserv register mypassword me@gmail.com"
  6. You will have to reply to the email that gets send to you. Once registered, every time you log in, you will have to type "/msg nickserv identify mypassword" (or you can configure the auto-perform to do this for you.)
  7. Type "/join ##srp" - and then on the ##srp tab that pops up, right-click and choose "Open This Channel At Startup".

Acknowledgements

Most content is taken from the post "SRP Chat!"[5]. Kudos to:

  • ByronTodd for creating the initial article and 'XChat on PCs (Windows and Linux)'
  • AaronX for 'Colloquy on Macs'
  • BeBerlin for 'irssi and ksirc (Linux / Unix clients)' as well as 'Pidgin'
  • RayD for 'Chatzilla'

References

  1. Mutton, Paul. IRC Hacks: 100 Industrial-Strength Tips &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp; Tools. Cambridge: Wikipedia:O'Reilly Media 2004. ISBN 0-596-00687-X
  2. Some freenode irc servers
  3. Network statistics over the last two weeks
  4. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pidgin_(software)
  5. http://straightrazorplace.com/general/23560-srp-chat.html

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