How To Set Up mIRC

How To Set Up mIRC

Internet Relay Chat, or IRC, is one of the older real-time channel-based messaging protocols available on the internet, having been devised in 1988, and long before the popular instant-messaging applications of today, such as Skype, Windows Live Messenger and Yahoo, were even conceived.

mIRC is a popular Internet Relay Chat client for Windows, and one of the superior offerings available. It supports file transfer, a customisable interface and has its own scripting language for more advanced users.

The application is fairly easy to get started with, but requires more setup than the mainstream instant-messaging tools mentioned above. Read on to get started with mIRC.

OS: Windows 2000/XP/Vista/7

Step-by-Step Instructions

  • 1

    The first time mIRC is run, it must be configured, and the Connect window is displayed.

  • 2

    Enter your Full Name and Email Address. These do not have to be genuine if you are concerned about sharing this information.

  • 3

    Choose a Nickname and Alternative and enter them into these fields. These will be the names that other users in the same channel will refer to you as.

  • 4

    Select the Servers tab within Connect, and enter the address of a specific IRC server to connect to. This step is optional, as mIRC will automatically connect to a random server. You can see a full list of IRC servers here:

  • 5

    Click the Connect button in the Connect tab to connect to the specified server.  When the connection is made, the Favourites dialog appears, with a list of available rooms on the server.

    In Internet Relay Chat, all rooms (sometimes known as channels) begin with #.

  • 6

    Select a channel from the list and click Join. mIRC attempts to connect to the specified channel on the current server.  When the connect is complete, a new window appears, divided into 3 main areas: the conversation window, the list of participants on the right, and a field for you to enter text into.

  • 7

    Enter something into the window and press Enter. All participants in the same channel will see what you have entered, and you will be able to see what they are “saying” in the main conversation window.

Tips & Advice

  • Internet Relay Chat is different to instant-messaging applications like Skype, in that it has many textual commands that can be used for different purposes. For example, you do not have to resort to the graphical user interface to connect to a new room – simply type /join #channelname and hit Enter.
  • To perform an action message type the following: /me waves at the world. Change the action to just about anything you like. All channel participants will see the command, but with your name instead of /me.

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