Internet Relay Chat

   This article gives a brief idea about the popular Internet Relay Chat. We’ll be looking at how to write an IRC client with our Visual C++ in another article.

   The Internet Relay Chat (IRC) is one of the most popular internet communication services. The idea for it came in 1990 and has been pretty much the same from the time of inception.

   The main difference between this IRC and the other popular chat services is the chat-room mode. The main chat with IRC takes places in the so-called chat rooms where a large number of users can communicate at the same time, without restricting just 2 people. The IRC network is built from IRC servers, which can be peered.

Some IRC Networks:

   For example the DalNet irc network is built from a large number of servers and when you connect to one you?ll be able to chat with users connected to any of the others. You won?t be able to chat with users from the UniBG network though. Almost every country has its IRC network. In the USA there are at least 10.


   There are IRC networks that are popular and users from all over the world connect to them to chat. To chat in IRC you need an IRC Client. The most popular ones are mIRC, Pirch, and Virc for Windows and Homer or Ircle for Mac’s.

Sample IRC Commands:

   Chat-rooms in IRC are called channels. Users in the channels are ops (operators) and (non-ops). Ops have various capabilities like changing the channel?s topic, kicking users from the channels, and giving op rights to other users. Many IRC networks have a chat-bot in them that is op in every channel and helps managing channels easier. IRC servers get various commands MODE (change channel modes), KICK (kick user from channel), TOPIC (change channel topic), NICK (changes the nickname of the sender) JOIN (sender joins a channel specified), PART (sender parts a channel), QUIT (closes the IRC session) and, of course, PRIVMSG which send a message to a user or channel. There are some other commands which are used very rarely.