Since HexChat seems to be the goto for this type of client, that will be what this tutorial is about.  XChat is old, and mostly closed source, as far as my memory allows. Since HexChat comes from XChat, if you use hexchat, there should be no real big difference in your interface.

Lets get our clients!

Hexchat: https://hexchat.org

XChat: https://xchat.org

Installation is pretty easy, if you’re a beginner, you should be good on just pressing ‘Next’ through the whole thing. Otherwise, you should know what you’re doing with each section.

Let’s Start Connecting!

To start off, when you open HexChat for the first time, you should see a server list dialog box.

Shown here


As you’ll see I have a selected network called “New Network”, we’ll talk about this later in the post, for now, lets go for instant connections.

Ok, so lets say you’ve skipped the network list, if you want to connect to LameNet, then we enter /server irc.lamenet.org +6697 for SSL. and /server irc.lamenet.org 6667 for Non-SSL.

If you need to open up a new connection without killing your first, then you need to use the command /NEWSERVER with the same input, so that would be /NEWSERVER chat.freenode.net 6667/+6697

Here they are for readabilities’ sake.

/SERVER irc.lamenet.org 6667 -> Non-SSL
/SERVER irc.lamenet.org +6697 -> SSL

/NEWSERVER irc.lamenet.org 6667 -> Non-SSL
/NEWSERVER irc.lamenet.org +6697 -> SSL

You may be thinking, ‘But what do we do if we want to connect to servers when we start XChat though’, unfortunately, the scripting isn’t as helpful in HexChat, so we’re going to have to do this through the Server List GUI, so lets review that.

Network List and Advanced Setup

So you’ve gotten this far, you’ve connected to servers or networks, but want to step up your game.

Lets see that picture of the network list again


Ok, so we have the global settings, your preferred nickname, and your second and third choice, and for the buttons, we have ‘Add’, ‘Remove’, ‘Edit’, ‘Sort’, and ‘Favor’

We’re going to click ‘Add’, then click where ‘New Network’ appeared, edit the name to your liking, then press ‘Enter’ or ‘Return’ on your keyboard, and it will set that as the name. Now click ‘Edit’, making sure that your new network is selected, and it will bring up another little window.

Since we want to connect on the start of the client, we’re going to select the ‘Connect automatically…’ box. You’re going to do this to each network that you want to connect to when HexChat starts.

HexChat: Edit LameNet_028

You’re going to click first up where it says ‘newserver/6667’, then type ‘irc.lamenet.org/6667’, if its SSL, just put ‘irc.lamenet.org/6697’, and then click the ‘Use SSL for all the servers on this network’. If you know them and know they sign their own SSL certificates, click the ‘Accept invalid SSL certificates’.

If you end up making yourself a services account, check out the ‘Login Method’ dropdown, and select what suits your situation. Usually you’re going to use ‘NickServ…’

That should be all that needs to be done, if you haven’t added your channels to NickServ’s ‘AJOIN’, or you don’t have a bnc, you can add channels to autojoin, click the tab ‘AutoJoin Channels’ then ‘Add’, enter the channel name and if it has a key (join password) put that where its supposed to be.

With that, you should be well on your way to having a fine time IRCing.

Scripting Tip

One more thingone_more_thing… If you write your scripts using xchat’s API, they will work in both XChat and HexChat.

Here’s a sample script taken from here

__module_name__ = "Cancel's HelloBot"
__module_version__ = "1.0.0"
__module_description__ = "HelloBot by Cancel"

print "\0034",__module_name__, __module_version__,"has been loaded\003"

import xchat

def on_join(word, word_eol, userdata):
      triggernick, triggerchannel, triggerhost = word
      destination = xchat.get_context()
      destination.command("say Hello " + triggernick + " and welcome to " + triggerchannel)

xchat.hook_print('Join', on_join)



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