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IRCCloud

As most people on IRC these days know, we all use some sort of BNC software. Well, here is the next generation of BNC that you will just want to get your hands dirty with, called IRCCloud.

IRCCloud is a modern, always-connected IRC client that works on mobile devices and modern web-browsers.

You’ll always be connected to IRC, even if your browser is closed and your computer is offline. When you come back to your computer, you’ll be able to easily see and respond to new messages since the last time you checked.

You can use IRCCloud from multiple computers, a record of messages you’ve seen and responded to are automatically kept in sync, so you get a seamless experience every time.

What exactly IS IRCCloud?
To make things simple, it’s an IRC client – IRCCloud connects to IRC servers for you, keeps your connection alive, and stores your chat history. You can access it via a modern web browser, or their mobile apps.

Does IRCCloud act as a BNC/bouncer and stay connected when I go offline?
Yes it does – you will stay connected to IRC even if you shutdown your computer or sign out of IRCCloud.com. This means when you come back, you’ll be able to see what happened on IRC whilst you were away.

Can I connect to an IRC network via SSL?
Yes. Additionally, your web connection to the irccloud.com will always be over HTTPS.

Can I connect to an IRC network that requires a password?
Yes, if you upgrade your account. NickServ login and SASL auth are also supported.

Is it FREE or does it cost something?
There is a free trial version which allows you to connect to up to 2 IRC networks other than IRCCloud’s home network. With the FREE account there is a limitation of being inactive for 2 hours before you are set as inactive and disconnected from any networks you may be connected to.
The PAID version is only $5/month. That includes an unlimited amount of allowed networks and access to connect to passworded servers.

What mobile versions are there?
Currently there is an Android app and an iOS app. They are available in the app stores, and are also open source.

How can I ban an IRCCloud user without banning the entire IRCCloud bouncer?
Information on the host and username scheme that IRCCloud uses is available in their abuse policy.

Why IRCCloud?
IRCCloud was built to solve these three issues:

  • You need to be online and running your IRC software to get messages
  • Being logged in to IRC from two or more computers often causes confusion
  • Most IRC software isn’t a pleasure to use

IRCCloud’s design philosophy is to make things clean, elegant and unobtrusive. IRC software shouldn’t get in your way. They’ve enabled some useful features by default, such as automatically collapsing join and part messages. Conversely, and as a matter of good taste, IRCCloud promises never to add graphical emoticons.

So, Who’s behind IRCCloud?
RJ works on the backend software, which is written in Erlang. An online-music alumnus, he founded Audioscrobbler and Last.fm, where he worked from 2002-2009. He occasionally blogs about Erlang and scalability topics on metabrew.com, and is @metabrew on Twitter.

James works on the interface design, and writes the JavaScript that powers the frontend. Another online music refugee and Last.fm alumnus, he keeps himself busy with various JS/PHP side projects, blogs as jouire.com and tweets as @jwheare

KiwiIRC

KiwiIRC is a web-based, open source IRC Client that was started around two years ago by Darren Whitlen, known as prawnsalad on IRC, as a “Can I do this” type of project. It was abandoned for a few months due to lack of time. After those few months passed Darren had some other developers who grew an interest into the project and jumped in helping release it once again.

The goal of the KiwiIRC client is to allow users without IRC knowledge to be able to communicate with each other on a simple to use web-based irc client. Aside from the client being web-based, it can also be embedded onto your chatsite and used for your personal IRC network. For for information on this please see http://kiwiirc.com/embedding.

Besides the above facts, it now has a Google Chrome extension, as well as a Firefox application, and it is compatible with your Android/Apple phones and tablets.

KiwiIRC has plans for the near future to have a fully functional admin web-panel to help the admin/staff of an IRC network to maintain and control the users as well as change KiwiIRC configuration options, without having to manually edit the files.

Screenshots:

KiwiIRC

The open source project can be found at http://github.com/prawnsalad/kiwiirc.
For more information regarding KiwiIRC, please visit http://www.kiwiirc.com

Mibbit has been compromised

On August 14 a cracker group claiming to be “hackers” named HTP broke into Mibbit, the popular web chat client for IRC. According to their temporarily “rescue” blog the break-in only affected their IRC network, their primary blog and their Wiki. NickServ passwords in clear text were released later the same day by the HTP, as well as personal information regarding several staff members. Both their IRC O-line passwords as well as their NickServ passwords, home addresses and phone numbers were published to the public via a range of file hosting services, and Pastebin.

Something perhaps even more concerning is that the group has revealed not only channel logs, but logs of private messages. It appears like Mibbit has been logging what people have said in PM to each other over their network. According to official statements, this was only a test. Some people have heard that Mibbit has been logging all messages going through their systems. Mibbit has never logged anything, unless a user wants to enable logging. The leaked message logs were captured by a staff member, and not by Mibbit’s system, according to official statements. While this is fully legal, the level of ethicality has been questioned.

The web IRC client that can be used to connect to almost any other network, which is what made them famous, has not been affected. It is operating normally.

All NickServ passwords were stored in plain text, and that raised a concern for those who are interested and engaged in enforcing security. According to staff member pottsi password hashing was not done because that would “means sendpass and getpass would not work”. Another staff member, Joshua, claimed that password hashing was not done because it was too much work to convert all passwords. This has however proven to be incorrect, at least if they used a plain copy of Anope. In Anope’s module database, there is a module called enc_switchover. It’s fairly easy to migrate from one encryption method, or none, to another, using that module. In addition to that, the Anope module ns_resetpass will allow users to reset their passwords despite encryption taking place.

Many people, especially IRC administrators, are now questioning Mibbit’s reliability and some are considering to block access from the web service, just like one of the largest networks, freenode, did a couple of years ago. This is mainly due to the question whether they log messages there too, which would go against many networks’ policies.

The Mibbit team is now working very hard to bring all services back up again. At the time of writing, ChanServ and NickServ on their network is down and staff members are forced to use /samode if they need to get op. They advice everyone who had a NickServ account registered in April or earlier, this year, to change password.

  Copyright secured by Digiprove

lightIRC 0.9.9 released

The free Flash IRC client lightIRC has been released on April 1st and that totally wasn’t an April Fools joke.

lightIRC 0.9.9 Channel View

lightIRC 0.9.9 Channel View

The webchat client adds new translations for Greek, Portuguese, Italian, Catalan and Bulgarian and is now available in a whopping total of 20 languages.

The need to access an authentication-file on lightirc.com has been removed and therefore it can now run on a LAN without any kind of Internet-access.

lightIRC 0.9.9 Channel Central

lightIRC 0.9.9 Channel Central

There have been a few miscellaneous fixes and a little code cleanup according to author valentin and the changelog also mentions a feature removal – The proxy feature has been dropped since it wasn’t “running good enough for production environments”.

The download of version 0.9.9 as well as the complete changelog can be found here.

  Copyright secured by Digiprove

wsIRC Webchat is now at version 1.0

wsIRC, a new webchat client, is now at version 1.0 – their first release version.

wsIRC Channelview

wsIRC Channelview

As you can see from the screenshot, the most important functions are already there: right-click menus for miscellaneous functions such as /WHOIS or /PRIVMSG’ing users, a Channel-Central to handle the most basic modes and bans. Registering your nick or channel through a simple popup is implemented and the usual buttons for smileys, font-color and style are available too.

Even without registering, your settings are remembered (if you wish to do so) and available when you go online the next time. If you register with wsIRC you can even create simple client-side scripts which you then can use anytime you log on IRC with their client.

Another nice toy that has been implemented is what happens when someone posts a link to a YouTube video: you’ll then see a small preview picture of it in the channel or PM window – neat!

Embedding the client into your own website is allowed and encouraged – there’s a simple tool that lets you create an IFrame or direct link with the options you chose which you then may embed into your site – great for providing your visitors a simple option to engage in your community.

wsIRC Embedding Code Generator w/ Preview

wsIRC Embedding Code Generator w/ Preview

To keep abusers at bay, the service puts your real IP into the GECOS/realname field and also checks the DroneBL DNSBL.

The webchat also offers a mobile version which works on iPhones and Windows Mobile devices as well as others when “a good JavaScript support is offered”.

All in all i really have to say it’s a nice client, even more so when you consider it is just at version 1.0 – i’m curious what more they can come up with :)