Archives For November 30, 1999

HexChat, the popular free open-source IRC chat client, discontinued!

HexChat is a IRC chat client forked from XChat. It’s a GTK app written in mostly C programming language. Features include customizable interface, Windows and Linux support, scripting support with Lua, Python, and Perl, multi-network with auto-connect, join, and identify, and more.

By announcing the 1.6.2 release today, the developer TingPing finally discontinued working on the project, after almost 12 years of development.

This will be the last release I make of HexChat. The project has largely been unmaintained for years now and nobody else stepped up to do that work.

Continue Reading…

HexChat IRC client 2.14.3 was released a day ago with important bug-fixes. Here’s how to install it in Ubuntu.

It has been more than one year since the last release. HexChat 2.14.3 was released with following changes:

  • fix various incorrect parsing of IRC messages relating to trailing parameters
  • fix SASL negotiation combined with multi-line cap
  • fix input box theming with Ubuntu’s new default Yaru theme
  • python: Work around Python 3.7 regression causing crash on unload
  • sysinfo: Add support for /etc/os-release
  • sysinfo: Ignore irrelevant mounts when calculating storage size

How to Install HexChat 2.14.3 in Ubuntu:

The software is available as both Snap and Flatpak packages, unfortunately no PPA with recent .deb packages.

HexChat Snap package (runs in sandbox) maintained by the principal developer is available to install in Ubuntu Software.

Note the snap is still 2.14.2 at the moment, though it will auto-update to 2.14.3 once the new package published.

The official HexChat Flatpak package (also runs in sandbox) has been updated to 2.14.3. You can install it via following steps:

1. Open terminal either by pressing Ctrl+Alt+T on keyboard or from Application launcher.

If you’re first time installing a Flatpak package, run following commands to setup the framework.

  • Install flatpak framework via command:
    sudo apt install flatpak

  • Then add Flathub, the official repository that hosts a large list of Flatpak packages:
    flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists flathub

2. Finally install HexChat Flatpak package via command:

flatpak install flathub io.github.Hexchat

After installation, open the software either from application menu or by running command:

flatpak run io.github.Hexchat

(Optional) To remove the Flatpak package, simply run command in terminal:

flatpak uninstall flathub io.github.Hexchat

HexChat IRC Client now is available to install via Snap package in Ubuntu 16.04, Ubuntu 18.04, and higher.

HexChat is a free, open-source, and extensible IRC Client based on XChat. It supports features such as: DCC, SASL, proxies, spellcheck, alerts, logging, custom themes, and Lua scripts.

HexChat offers official Snap package, which is a containerized software packages bundles all required libraries, and auto-update itself.

Install HexChat via Snap in Ubuntu:

For Ubuntu 18.04 and higher, the snap package can be easily installed from Ubuntu Software:

For Ubuntu 16.04, open terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T) and run command to install snapd first:

sudo apt-get install snapd

Then install the HexChat snap package via command:

sudo snap install hexchat

Note if you installed both HexChat legacy and Snap packages, you’ll see two launch icons from software menu. To make sure you’re running HexChat snap package, launch it from terminal via command:

snap run hexchat


To remove the IRC client, either use Ubuntu Software or run command in terminal:

sudo snap remove hexchat

This tutorial is going to show you how to install the latest HexChat GTK+ IRC client and receive future software updates along with other system updates.

HexChat is a XChat based IRC client that’s completely free for Windows and Unix-like systems. It features Python and Perl scripting support, a plugin API, multiple server/channel windows, spell checking, multiple authentication methods including SASL, and customizable notifications.

HexChat is available in official Ubuntu repositories, but Canonical does not provide future updates for this software. While Ubuntu 16.04 provides the old 2.10.2 release, the HexChat website refers to Gwendal LE BIHAN’s PPA (unofficial) for the latest release.

1. Add PPA.

Open terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T) and run the command below:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gwendal-lebihan-dev/hexchat-stable

Type in password (no visual feedback) when it asks and hit Enter to continue.

2. Update system package index by either launching Software Updater and wait checking for updates, or running command:

sudo apt update

3. If you don’t a previous release installed, you can now install HexChat from Ubuntu Software, or via command:

sudo apt install hexchat

or upgrade the client via Software Updater:

4. (Optional) To remove the PPA, launch System Settings and navigate to Software & Updates -> Other Software.

Smuxi IRC client finally reached the 1.0 release. Here’s how to install or upgrade it in Ubuntu 15.04, Ubuntu 14.04, Ubuntu 12.04 and derivatives, e.g., Linux Mint 13/17.x, Elementary OS Freya and Luna.

Smuxi is an open-source, distributed and user-friendly IRC / Twitter / XMPP / Campfire / JabbR client for Linux, Windows and Mac OS X based on GNOME / GTK+.

The 1.0 release was announced recently when it’s 10 years old and features:

  • Message Persistence – messages sent and received are now stored on the disk in a way they can automatically be retrieved/loaded when you restart Smuxi.
  • new command line tool smuxi-message-buffer allows to convert and export the message history.
  • 4 new plugins:
    • topic-diff: Shows the word differences of the topic after topic changes. (meebey)
    • away-nick: Automatically appends and removes $AWAY_SUFFIX to/from the nick name when you go away using the /away command or by disconnecting all frontends from the smuxi-server. (meebey)
    • system-info: Shows system info. Includes system kernel version, distro name, and CPU vendor information. (AK0)
    • now-playing: This plugin is not new but was rewritten in Python to get rid of the spaghetti code monster which was written in Bash. (jamesaxl)
  • UI, text frontend, twitter and other enhancements. See details

Install/Upgrade Smuxi in Ubuntu:

1. Open terminal from the Dash, App Launcher, or via Ctrl+Alt+T shortcut keys. When it opens, run command to add its stable PPA:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:meebey/smuxi-stable

2. If you have an old version installed on your system, just launch Software Updater/Update Manager and upgrade the software after checking for updates.

Or use Synaptic Package Manager (available in Software Center) to check for updates and install Smuxi 1.0:

For those who are familiar with command line, just run below commands one by one:

sudo apt-get update

sudo apt-get install smuxi

Relay is a new IRC client designed for Elementary OS that aims to be small, fast, and elegant. It’s written in Vala and also works in Ubuntu and other Linux.

Relay uses very few libraries and takes less memory (

  • drag and drop to Hastebin – drag files to the paste icon will upload all of them and put the URL’s in the output window.
  • A missed message count.
  • Highlighting tabs with activity from IRC servers.
  • Drag and drop reordering of tabs.
  • Automatic IRC channel connecting
  • URL parsing and the ability to open your browser when clicked
  • Highlights the name of your or anyone else when mentioned in a chat
  • Right click tab switching.
  • The ability to switch channels through tabs or the sidebar.
  • It supports languages that use UTF-8 characters.
  • Although Relay was built on Elementary OS it will switch the theme depending on what operating system you are using.
  • The ability to search users
  • The ability to see where you left off since you last visited a tab
  • The ability to control many settings and set colors in the UI
  • Click a user name to have their name placed in the text entry
  • Private messaging and ability to block users
  • The ability to turn on or off joining or exiting messages
  • Creates a datestamp every 5 minutes to give you a timeline of what has happened
  • Screenshots:

    At the moment of writing this tutorial there are two bugs for Ubuntu user and I’ve reported them to the project page:

    1. In Unity desktop, when you try to minimize Relay window by clicking its icon on left Launcher, session crashes immediately and brings you back to login screen. – Bug with Compiz
    2. In Gnome Shell, there’s a reading issue (Picture 4) – Fixed

    Install Relay IRC client from PPA:

    The developer has created a PPA repository for the project. So far, Ubuntu 15.10, Ubuntu 15.04, Elementary OS Freya are supported.

    NOTE: Ubuntu 14.04 needs updated version of libgranite (>= 0.3.0) and GTK+3.0 (>= 3.14). You can get them from Gnome Testing PPA and Elementary Stable PPA. But using the PPAs could break your system or make it unstable! Do it at your own risk!

    1. To add the PPA, open terminal from the Dash, Launcher, or via Ctrl+Alt+T shortcut keys. When it opens, run command:

    sudo add-apt-repository ppa:agronick/relay

    2. After added the PPA, install the software via Synaptic Package Manager. Or just run below commands one by one in terminal:

    sudo apt-get update
    sudo apt-get install relay

    For those who don’t want to add PPA, grab the .deb package from the launchpad page.

    Feature requests and issues please report at

    WeeChat, Wee Enhanced Environment for Chat, is a free and open-source IRC client designed to be light and fast.

    The client uses a curses frontend, and there are remote interfaces for Web, Qt, Android and Emacs. It can be used and navigated using a keyboard alone but also supports mouse input. The client can be heavily customized via configuration files and using various plugins and scripts.

    WeeChat’s features include:

    • IPv6
    • SSL
    • Proxy connections
    • The screen can be split up to display multiple windows at the same time.
    • Incremental text search
    • Aspell support for spell checking
    • Scripting support for many languages (Perl, Python, Ruby, Lua, Tcl, Scheme with GNU Guile)
    • FIFO pipes for remote control
    • Support for multiple character encodings
    • User-defined aliases and shortkeys

    WeeChat works on most platforms and operating systems, including Linux, Mac OS X, BSD, Solaris, Windows. While Ubuntu repositories provide an old version, you can install the latest packages and receive future updates of WeeChat by following below steps.

    Install/Upgrade WeeChat in Ubuntu:

    1. Open terminal from the Dash/Menu, or by pressing Ctrl+Alt+T on keyboard. When it opens, run command to add WeeChat official PPA:

    sudo add-apt-repository -y ppa:nesthib/weechat-stable

    2. After adding the PPA, launch Software Updater utility. After checking for updates (automatically), you can upgrade WeeChat by installing available updates:

    3. If you don’t have a previous version installed, search for and install WeeChat from Ubuntu Software Center after checking for updates (via Software Updater, or sudo apt-get update command.)

    This quick tutorial shows you how to install the latest release of Quassel IRC client in Ubuntu 14.10, Ubuntu 14.04, Ubuntu 12.04 and derivatives via PPA.

    Quassel is a modern, cross-platform, distributed KDE / Qt IRC client. One (or multiple) client(s) can attach to and detach from a central core. It’s much like the popular combination of screen and a text-based IRC client such as WeeChat, but graphical.

    While Ubuntu 14.04 Software Center provides Quassel 0.10, the latest release has recently reached 0.11. See what’s new:

    changes in v0.10.1:

    • Fix buffer hotlist sorting

    • Split CTCP messages if they’re too long

    • Make database problems more obvious

    • Fix backlog loading for QuasselDroid

    • Properly save the toolbar state on Mac OSX

    • Fix a crash with KDE’s network detection

    • Various other fixes

    changes in v0.11.0:

    • New build requirements: C++11 capable compiler (gcc 4.7+, clang 3.3+, MSVC 2013+), cmake 2.8.9+

    • Full support for Qt 5.2+ in addition to Qt 4.6+

    • Completely revamp the build system, making use of “new” CMake features

    Install Quassel IRC Clien via PPA:

    Thanks to Michael Marley, a PPA repository has been created with the latest stable builds of Quassel packages for Ubuntu 14.10, Ubuntu 14.04, Ubuntu 12.04 and derivatives.

    1. Press Ctrl+Alt+T on keyboard to open terminal. When it opens, run the command below to add the PPA:

    sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mamarley/quassel

    Type in your user password when it asks. Note that there is no visual feed back when you’re typing a password.

    2. Then update and install the client:

    For KDE build, run:

    sudo apt-get update; sudo apt-get install quassel

    For Qt build, run:

    sudo apt-get update; sudo apt-get install quassel-qt4

    Once installed, open the irc client from Unity dash or application menu and you can receive future updates by running regular update via Software Updater.

    The command-line irc client f-irc has reached version 1.32. This release sanitizes user interface logic. A crash in /LIST has been fixed. The user menu now automatically retrieves full names. Joining a channel from the list shows the topics as well. DCC did not work. This release can let the channel list be sorted. Improved search in channel and user input scrollback windows.

    The source tarball is available in its official web page.

    For Ubuntu 14.04, Ubuntu 13.10, Ubuntu 12.10, Ubuntu 12.04, Linux Mint and their derivatives, you can install this client from my PPA.

    Press Ctrl+Alt+T on keyboard to open the terminal. When it opens, run below commands one by one:

    sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntuhandbook1/apps
    sudo apt-get update
    sudo apt-get install f-irc

    This will add the PPA, update your system packages list and install f-irc client.

    Once installed, run man f-irc to get help.

    F-IRC, an irc client for terminals/command-line/console now is at version 1.31 which brings several improvements.

    As you may know, F-IRC aims to be as user friendly as possible with easy navigation and keyboard shortcuts for quick navigation. The learning curve should be as shallow as possible.

    The latest version F-IRC 1.31 brings below changes:

    • rewrites IRC protocol handling (much more stable)
    • Nicks can now be aligned in a column. You can now add a marker line to see where you left off (this is also automatic when changing channels)
    • An improved configuration editor
    • A tab-completion dictionary
    • Improved scroll-back window navigation. You can now invoke an external program/script when there’s a nick-hit
    • A “headlines” window has been added. You can now set custom highlight words

    How to Install F-IRC in Ubuntu:

    I’ve uploaded the latest builds to launchpad PPA, so we can easily install the client by running below commands one by one in terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T):

    sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntuhandbook1/apps
    sudo apt-get update
    sudo apt-get install f-irc

    Works for Ubuntu 14.04, Ubuntu 13.10, Ubuntu 13.04, Ubuntu 12.10, Ubuntu 12.04, Linux Mint and their derivatives.

    If you don’t like the PPAs, download the DEBs from launchpad page

    F-IRC Homepage