IRC/Tips and tricks


IRC can sometimes seem a little simplistic, but there are actually a lot of helpful commands that do really useful things.

You may use these instructions to configure your client to suppress all the messages about people joining and leaving channels.

Client commands


Note, some of these commands may not work on your client. If you find inconsistencies, please report them on the talk page.

/msg <username> <message>
Send a private message to a user. Nobody else will be able to see the messages you send, or even that you're sending them.
/away <reason>
Set your status as "away". Some clients treat this differently, but the gist is, you'll be marked as away and you'll be able to see any messages that occur when you return.
Come back from being away.
/ctcp <username> time
Find the local time according to a user. Useful for finding the timezone of a user.
/ctcp <username> version
Find the client version of a user. Helpful for knowing what client a user is running.
/join <channel name>
Join a channel. See #IRC Channels for a good list.
Part the channel you're currently in.
Ignore verbose users from time to time to lower noise, like /ignore <grrrit-wm>. To unignore type /ignore -r <grrrit-wm>
/notify <username>
Get notified when a user connects or disconnects to or from the network.
/hilight <string>
Get notified when a string is said in any channel. This is sometimes referred to as "stalkwords".
Clear the buffer for a channel. This is helpful when you write something private on your screen that you don't want to be visible anymore.
/nick <username>
Change your username. If the username already exists, you'll get an error message. If it's registered, you'll be changed to a guest username within about 30 seconds.
/ns group
Use this to add alternate nicknames to your account. E.g. To add my backup nickname, "quiddity_", I would do these three separate commands: /nick quiddity_, /ns group, /nick quiddity.
/mode +v
This is used to become an authorized assistant, for active users, and must be approved by a channel moderator. Approval will result with a '+' next to you name in the channel.

Services commands


These commands are actually private messages to bots that Freenode runs as part of their network services. They do not vary between clients.

/msg nickserv info <username>
Get information about a username or account.
/msg nickserv set enforce on
Make sure nobody can use your nickname(s) without logging in to your account.
/msg chanserv info <channel>
Get information about a channel.
/msg memoserv send <username> <text>
Send a memo to a user, even if they're not logged in. Helpful for people who aren't online 24/7. e.g. /msg memoserv marktraceur Hey man, can you review Gerrit 55555?


Main article: IRC/Cloaks

When you connect to IRC you are identified as

A Cloak replaces this display of your IP address or hostname, for example, jwales' identifier is wikipedia/Jimbo-Wales.

New channel setup


If you create a new public channel, you should do these commands as the channel op:

To formally register the channel, and set yourself as Founder.
/msg chanserv register #CHANNEL_NAME
To invite ChanServ (part of the network's services), who will preserve channel settings if everyone else leaves.
/msg chanserv set #CHANNEL_NAME guard on
To utilize the 'global bans list'. Please also notify an op in #wikimedia-bans of the channel's creation.
/mode #CHANNEL_NAME +b $j:#wikimedia-bans
These two will enable access for wmopbot and Libera staff, in case of problems whilst you're asleep/away.
/msg chanserv flags #CHANNEL_NAME *!*@libera/staff/* +Aiotvr
/msg chanserv flags #CHANNEL_NAME wmopbot +Aio

If a channel is having problems, and you are not an op there, do this to get a list of people to contact: /msg chanserv flags #CHANNEL_NAME. For channels in the Wikimedia namespace, the ops in #wikimedia-ops may be able to help if wmopbot is present, or the group contacts can also assist in emergencies.