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Internet Relay Chat (IRC) is a stable, mature, text-based chat (instant messaging) system. IRC is one of the primary avenues of communication for those involved at all levels in the Gentoo project.

IRC and Gentoo

Since chat messages are sent and received almost instantly, IRC allows the Gentoo project to have a very reactive collaboration processes.

There are Gentoo IRC channels for user support. For any issue, a preexisting solution should be sought using a search engine, the forums, mailing lists, and here on the wiki, before asking on a support channel.

Most Gentoo subprojects have a specific channel on Libera Chat for inter-project communication. Project-related channels are used for: tracking changes to source code, requesting and discussing (new) features, addressing various issues, real-time team meetings, internal support, and communication between Gentoo developers and the community.

The Gentoo IRC channels on Libera Chat have a code of conduct that should be read and understood by each user before connecting to any channel.
It is important to understand Gentoo IRC channels, like the mailing lists, are not encrypted; all discussion therein is entirely visible to the public in plain text and is most likely logged by every user present in the channel. It is unwise and unsafe to post private information inside IRC channels.
See the list of IRC channels managed by the Gentoo project for support, discussion of specific topics, and general chat, but read the above section, and the code of conduct first.
Do not paste long text excerpts, or whole files, to IRC. Use wgetpaste if long passages are to be shared.

Available software

The following table contains some of the IRC software available in Gentoo. Discover which client works best by emerging each one or by visiting each homepage:

Name Package Homepage Description
Pidgin net-im/pidgin GTK Instant Messenger client.
Konversation net-irc/konversation User friendly IRC Client based on KDE Frameworks.
HexChat net-irc/hexchat Graphical IRC client based on XChat.
WeeChat net-irc/weechat Portable and multi-interface (text, web, and GUI) IRC client.
Irssi net-irc/irssi A modular text UI IRC client with IPv6 support.
ircii net-irc/ircii An IRC and ICB client that runs under most UNIX platforms.
kvirc net-irc/kvirc A portable IRC client that uses the Qt GUI toolkit.
Quassel net-irc/quassel Qt5 IRC client supporting a remote daemon for 24/7 connectivity
Polari net-irc/polari An IRC client for GNOME
Srain net-irc/srain Modern, beautiful IRC client written in GTK+ 3
catgirl net-irc/catgirl A TLS-only terminal IRC client


Learning can be especially challenging when attempting to use a text-mode (CLI) client like Irssi or WeeChat. For this reason the IRC guide has been written. Head over there for in-depth information on many IRC related topics.

Spam protection

In order to prevent private message spam on IRC from unregistered users, one can set user modes +g or +R.

Larry wants to ignore private messages from users who are not identified, but wants to get an information that someone wanted to send a message to Larry. Larry can decide to receive messages with the /accept command:

 /mode larry +g 

Larry wants to ignore private messages from users who are not identified totally:

 /mode larry +R

External resources