The IRC client establishes a connection to an IRC server , which then serves as a switching station between several IRC clients that can communicate with each other in this way. The main task of the IRC client is to receive conversation content and commands in the form of text lines from the user and to send them to the IRC server. Messages from others are also received by the server and displayed in the IRC client.
A typical form of representation is that of an at least two-part window . The course of the call is shown in a large area, and entries are received in a line below. Many IRC clients present a separate two-part window for each channel and each private chat (query).
Types of Interactive IRC Clients
You can roughly differentiate between two variants of interactive IRC clients:
- Directly executable programs: These are executed directly on the computer independently of the web browser , e.g. XChat . These clients usually offer a much larger range of functions than the web chats mentioned below. ChatZilla held a special position because it was an add-on for the Mozilla Firefox web browser that ran in a separate window.
- Web chats : A website is called up in which the chat is displayed. The connection to the IRC server is either completely controlled by the web server , which continuously forwards the changes in the chat to the browser (such as with Mibbit or qwebirc ), alternatively such a chat can also establish the connections directly by the user. The latter, however, has currently only been implemented with the help of external browser plug-ins such as Java applets (e.g. PJIRC ) or Flash . Webchats makes it easier for IRC newbies in particular to get started, as all they need to do is open a website.
Automated clients (IRC bots)
In addition to clients operated by users, there are also a number of automatically acting bots for Internet Relay Chat that connect in the same way as user-controlled IRC clients and perform certain tasks independently or on command, such as logging chats. A well-known representative is Eggdrop .
At times, bots are also written as an extension to normal IRC clients, such as mIRC , which blurs the line between automatic chatting by the user and automated replies.
In addition to simple command processing, there are also IRC bots that try to imitate human chatters and take part in longer conversations.
Common IRC clients
Since IRC is one of the more established and older standards on the Internet, there is a large selection of IRC clients these days. Common uses are:
- Windows : ChatZilla , Instantbird , irssi , KVIrc , Miranda IM , Miranda NG , mIRC , Nettalk , Opera , Pidgin , Quassel IRC , Smuxi , Trillian , XChat , HexChat , jIRC
- Unix / Linux : BitchX , ChatZilla , Empathy , Instantbird , ircII , irssi , Konversation , Kopete , KVIrc , Opera , Pidgin , Smuxi , Quassel IRC , WeeChat , XChat , HexChat
- Plan 9 : irc7, ircc, ircrc
- Mac OS : Adium , ChatZilla , Colloquy , Instantbird , irssi , KVIrc , LimeChat , Opera , Quassel IRC , Smuxi , textual , Trillian , XChat (Aqua), HexChat
- AmigaOS : AmIRC , WookieChat
- Java applets : EIRC , PJIRC
- Web server : CGI: IRC ( Perl / CGI ), qwebirc ( Python , Ajax )
- Java : CBIRC , jIRCii
- Flash : lightIRC
- Emacs Lisp : ERC , rcirc
- J. Oikarinen, D. Reed: RFC 1459 - Internet Relay Chat Protocol . May 1993. Section 1.2: Clients. (English).
- J. Oikarinen, D. Reed: RFC 1459 - Internet Relay Chat Protocol . May 1993. Section 1.1: Servers. (English).
- J. Oikarinen, D. Reed: RFC 1459 - Internet Relay Chat Protocol . May 1993. Section 3.2.2: To a group (channel). (English).
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