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General Community => Lounge => Topic started by: FiXato on March 31, 2006, 03:42:58 PM

Title: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: FiXato on March 31, 2006, 03:42:58 PM
This is my attempt to gather all the Mobile IRC Addicts together, and make sure more people know about the wonders of Mobile IRC'ing!
Furthermore I would like this topic to be some kind of information point about the developments in the mobile IRC world :)

And most of all: to have fun!
So, first thing I did, was make an icon to show you are a Proud Mobile IRC'ing Addict!
Code: [Select]
[url=http://forum.chat4all.net/index.php/topic,448.0.html][img]http://fixato.co.uk/images/icons/mobileIRC2.gif[/img][b]I am a [i]Proud Mobile IRC Addict![/i][/b][/url]could be added to your sig to show:
(http://fixato.co.uk/images/icons/mobileIRC2.gif)I am a Proud Mobile IRC Addict! (http://forum.chat4all.net/index.php/topic,448.0.html)

or if you have space for a bigger one somewhere:
Code: [Select]
[url=http://forum.chat4all.net/index.php/topic,448.0.html][img]http://fixato.co.uk/images/icons/mobileIRC.gif[/img][b]I am a [i]Proud Mobile IRC Addict![/i][/b][/url]would show:
(http://fixato.co.uk/images/icons/mobileIRC.gif)I am a Proud Mobile IRC Addict! (http://forum.chat4all.net/index.php/topic,448.0.html)

So... let's get started!

What is Mobile IRC'ing?
Mobile IRC'ing is connecting to an IRC (Internet Relay Chat) server through a mobile device such as a PocketPC or Mobile Phone.
With the increase of possibilities to get online from these mobile devices (WAP, GPRS, UMTS, Wi-Fi), the ways to get on an IRC-server with them increases as well!

How can I get on IRC from my phone?
Well, let's divide this up a bit :)

Getting on IRC through WAP
WAP, the Wireless Access Protocol, was one of the first protocols used to get online from mobile devices. It is slow and should only be used for small websites :)
However, gateway software has been written for it :)
If you have a FreeBSD or Linux machine/server with internet access you can install programs on, then you can try out WapIRC (http://tvilda.stilius.net/wapirc/)
With this piece of software, you can setup and run your own gateway, to which you can connect with your WAP-capable mobile device.
This software usually is rather limited, mostly because of the limitations of WAP.
Steike.com (now moved to Tykje.com (http://tykje.com/) used to host a wapIRC gateway as well. Due to hosting issues it is no longer continued though. The page can still be found here (http://tykje.com/WapIrc) though..

Getting on IRC through GPRS/UTMS/WiFi via JAVA
This way of connecting has much more, and much nicer solutions :)!
One of the first Java solutions out there for your Mobile Device was WLIrc (http://wirelessirc.sourceforge.net/).
WLIrc 1.0 is written for the Java MIDP 1.0 framework and should work on most mobile devices that support Java applications.
The program itself has some limitations though..
For instance, you don't see nickchanges, nor does it show hostaddresses. Also, it can't send any raw command you would want it to send.
And if you are writing a message, you can't see what is being said in the channel.
Also, if someone opens a private window with you while you are writing a message, the message you were writing will be lost.

A lot of these bugs/limitations have been solved in WLIrc 2.x (http://thesverre.servebeer.com/).
However, since it uses midp 2.0, it doesn't support a lot of mobile devices.. Especially not the older ones..

But enough about WLIrc, there are more Java clients out there for your MD (Mobile Device ;))!

For instance, jmIRC (http://jmirc.sourceforge.net/)
I find that jmIRC is more userfriendly than WLIrc 1.0; can't judge about comparison with WLIrc 2.0 though, since I never gotten that properly to work on my Smartphone Orange SPV C550.

It seems to be more stable than WLIrc, and I believe it also handles the receiving while typing a message better :)

Another one that is based on WLIrc is virca (http://www.vidarholen.net/contents/virca/), a client that I haven't tested yet myself.
The development for this client is also very slow though..

Getting on IRC through GPRS/UTMS/WiFi via Native Windows Mobile Software
PocketPCs running Windows Mobile Operating System, and new mobile phone/pocketpc hybrids such as the SmartPhones have access to clients that more and more come close to the clients you run on your regular pc.
Since it runs natively on your MD, and doesn't need to run through a java virtual machine, they tend to be more stable and run faster!

[updated]
The first client I prefered: SmartIRC.net (http://kny.iki.fi/smartirc/).
Although it is just a single-window client, it works pretty nicely for me :) And it is free! :D
Sending private messages can be kinda tedious if you are chatting to more persons in private at once, since you have to prefix your message with a dot followed by the nickname of the user the message is meant for.
For instance: .moogle hi there moogs! would send "hi there moogs!" to one of everyone's favourite chatsters, moogle ;p
You can switch between channels via a menu.
Raw servercommands can be send by prefixing them with a comma ,

[updated]
One that looked very promising was wmIRC (http://wmirc.com/), a client that says to support both PocketPC as SmartPhone. It had been my favourite for a long time. I even dropped SmartIRC in favour of wmIRC. But the lack of development, list of out-standing bugs and the promising future of zsIRC didn't make it worthwhile anymore to pay for it.
The main downsides are that it is a paid client and that development on it seems to has been halted.
19.95 USD is still quite steep.. especially since I couldn't get it properly to work on my C550.. I could physically enter rooms, and the built-in log function did log the chats.. but no window was opened for that room..
Private chats worked fine though...
On my HTC TyTN II (Also known as HTC Kaiser) it all did seem to work okay most of the times, although on rare occasions it would still occur for 1 or 2 windows.
It has full colour and control code support, and -as mentioned before- supports logging to a txt file on your phone.
It also has a built-in identd-server (although I would not work on mine as I was still detected as identd-less by the server) and supports connecting to SSL IRC-servers.
If you have a touch-screen supporting phone, you can copy single words from the conversation window by tapping on them; they will appear in your input entry box then.

NEW!
The client I prefer to use nowadays, is zsIRC (http://zsirc.com/about.php).
It is free, has multiple-window-support, has on-screen typing so you don't have to switch back and forth between a typing window and the conversation window.
It has a shared input bar, so you can type something and if another window opens, you can get back to the other window again and enter the text there
It is stable; it doesn't display strange glitches and doesn't crash (not yet so far anyway).
It is actively developed! This is something that always bothered me about the previous favourites of mine... updates were scarce (even though there were still bugs), or development on them was even halted..
Unsupported commands are sent directly to the server, so raw commands should be supported.
One of the main reasons that I also like this client, is that it supports logging! Logs are stored in one big .log-text file per window and the timestamps are limited to hours:minutes:seconds, so it lacks dates..
Another nice feature of this client is that it displays an on-screen NickList on the side of the screen! It displays the Prefix-symbols (~,&,@, % and +) as well infront of the nicks. One bug with this though is that it doesn't recognise the new prefixes & and ~ properly; it does display them, but if you try to open a conversation through its context-menu, it will open a conversation with the prefix added to the nickname. So for instance trying to open a private conversation with me when I am founder of a room (and thus have the ~ prefix, it will try to open a conversation window with ~FiXaphone instead of just FiXaphone; thus messages typed in there will not be delivered. This is a bug though that occurs in many IRC clients...
The nicklist is properly automatically updated with parts and joins, which is a bug that occurs often on wmIRC and WLirc.
/Joins, /Parts and /Quits are displayed as well with hostnames and messages!
You can copy single lines of a conversation if you have a touch-screen supported phone by tapping on the line. The developer writes though that he is working on buffer-copying too.
So go ahead; download (http://www.zsirc.com/downloads.php) it and try it out. :)

Last but not least, is PocketIRC (http://pocketirc.com/). But as the name says, it is only for the PocketPC, thus I haven't been able to test it :) (Update: as I now have a TyTN II which is classified as a PocketPC, I could check this client out now; expect an updated article in a while!) Also, it isn't free either. It is 5 USD cheaper than wmIRC though :)
A free alternative would be PocketChat (http://www.sspocketchat.com/)

Something extra for MIDP2.0 support on (older) Windows Mobile devices:
If you have a windows mobile environment (or something else on your phone that can run *.exe's), then you can grab yourself IBM's MIDP2.0 (http://www.modaco.com/index.php?act=Attach&type=post&id=17544) which will allow you to run MIDP 2.0 java applications.
Extract the IVE folder into your \Storage Card\Program Files\ folder and place the MIDP-ANS.lnk link in your (Storage)\Windows\Start Menu folder.
Note: you can use File:/// to load local .jad / .jar files. It is preferred to also have a .jad file (creatable with jadgen or jbench, or by renaming the Manifest file inside the .jar)

You can also get the latest version of the IBM MIDP2.0 from the IBM website (http://www-128.ibm.com/developerworks/websphere/zones/wireless/weme_eval_runtimes.html)

Install it on your pc and copy the contents of
.\IBM\WEME\runtimes\61\wm50-sp-arm-midp20\weme-wm50-sp-arm-midp20_6.1.0.20060317-111429.zip
to your smartphone's storage card and create a shortcut to the Emulator.exe

Join Us!
Do you know or use an IRC client for a mobile device that I haven't listed? Or just want to show your support to the Mobile IRC Addicts community? Or want to show you are a proud Mobile IRC Addict as well?
GO ON! Post in here :D We mobile IRC geeks don't bite ;p

This is my attempt to gather all the Mobile IRC Addicts together, and make sure more people know about the wonders of Mobile IRC'ing!
Furthermore I would like this topic to be some kind of information point about the developments in the mobile IRC world :)

Changelog:
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: Siiw on April 03, 2006, 10:44:32 AM
/me is a phone IRC addict, too *hides*
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: FiXato on April 03, 2006, 03:34:35 PM
Have you tried other clients beside wlIRC that you use?
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: Rafe` on April 04, 2006, 05:38:43 PM
In belgium it's too expensive to be hoocked up to IRC, unless you are going trough wifi ... but for the rest no thank you ... and IRC is fun when you want to have chill, but to be online all the time ... no thanks and besides IRC'ng while driving a car .... don't see the combination  :tongue:
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: Siiw on April 09, 2006, 11:32:44 PM
Only wlIrc 2 beta, but that wasn't working. I could type, but not see what other people were typing!
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: Adonix on April 10, 2006, 05:31:28 AM
Eyyy Siiw, where's your "I am a Proud Mobile IRC Addict!" signature? ;)
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: Foxman on April 19, 2006, 07:00:21 PM
Great Information!

I tryed WLIrc2 Beta 4, but i couldn't see anything in the channel, or less.
I also Tryed jmIRC, and that one Works fine for me :)
So now i can work on my mobile IRC Addiction ;)
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: FiXato on April 20, 2006, 12:26:50 AM
WLirc2.* has that problem with a lot of phones. It is probably related to the use of java midlet2 instead of midlet1.
I should see if I can find a way to update the java bytecode engine for my mobile phone. maybe that works.
I have a similar problem with wmIRC
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: FiXato on May 18, 2006, 03:05:23 PM
Java MIDP 2.0 on your SmartPhone
If you have a windows mobile environment (or something else on your phone that can run *.exe's), then you can grab yourself IBM's MIDP2.0 (http://www.modaco.com/index.php?act=Attach&type=post&id=17544) which will allow you to run MIDP 2.0 java applications.
Extract the IVE folder into your \Storage Card\Program Files\ folder and place the MIDP-ANS.lnk link in your (Storage)\Windows\Start Menu folder.
Note: you can use File:/// to load local .jad / .jar files. It is preferred to also have a .jad file (creatable with jadgen or jbench, or by renaming the Manifest file inside the .jar)

You can also get the latest version of the IBM MIDP2.0 from the IBM website (http://www-128.ibm.com/developerworks/websphere/zones/wireless/weme_eval_runtimes.html)

Install it on your pc and copy the contents of
.\IBM\WEME\runtimes\61\wm50-sp-arm-midp20\weme-wm50-sp-arm-midp20_6.1.0.20060317-111429.zip
to your smartphone's storage card and create a shortcut to the Emulator.exe

I also managed to get wmIRC 2.0 running btw, but that involved getting an earlier (unofficial) release...

Opera Update!
Btw, Opera has release version 2.0 of their Opera Mini software (http://www.opera.com/products/mobile/operamini/). (And 8.5 of the Opera Mobile)
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: FiXato on December 29, 2007, 02:03:48 PM
The first post has been updated with new information, a new client (zsIRC) and formatting.
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: FiXato on February 07, 2008, 11:16:33 PM
As of today, I registered the domain zsIRC.com (http://www.zsIRC.com) for the zsIRC project. Currently it is redirecting to the original website, but soon it will function as a normal alternative url for this very nice mobile IRC client!
Original post updated with the new url.

(Please note that I am *not* a zsIRC developer :) that is only gargaj :))
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: negg on February 08, 2008, 02:10:19 PM
Yeah, zsIRC...please consider that smartphones are getting more and more popular. Dont  :sleepy: and help us SPH-users stop feeling  :frusty: and :mad: and :puke: and port the WM Professional version to WM Standard! Pleeeeeeaaaaassseeee  :bye:

Until then: for Smartphone users of wmIRC: if you have problems using the smartphone version (for what reason whatsoever) try installing the smartphone version, rename the exe and the copy the PPC-version EXE over to your smartphone. Works fine, except for the settings, which you still have to set in the smartphone version.

Maybe someone who has wmIRC (PPC) running can tell me in what registry key the setting for the "Execute after connect" setting is stored? Thanks a lot!

(The settings are stored under HKCU/Software/wmIRC)
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: negg on March 08, 2008, 03:52:09 PM
zsIRC now also runs on Smartphones without touchscreen! See zsIRC.com for the latest version. :yes:
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: FiXato on December 10, 2008, 03:51:41 PM
Siiw, could you post your experiences with the client you use now?
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: Siiw on December 14, 2008, 10:36:30 PM
The one i use now is called UtaIRC. It is a (modified) version of jmIRC, made by a russian and partly translated into english.

It is in many ways more advanced than wlirc. It displays text and info in a much more correct way, whoises and topics show fully. It shows the host when people join and part a channel, and it shows nick changes correctly. The nick list is updated automatically, something wlirc couldn't do. It can be set to notify nicks and highlight your own nick. The Favourites system saves lines, for example commands, that can be entered with 2-3 clicks later. I have found that very useful for identifying. It also supports a perform script, and different profiles.

Some parts of the program is still in Russian, i have found russian text in input windows in certain situation, and there is a "language not found" error in the op/deop menu. The menus are slower to navigate through than wlirc's, since they have several sublevels of menus. For example, to open a private window with somebody, you have to choose "menu-nick list-commands-open query". The menus contain more commands than wlirc, but it can be harder to find the desired function. There is no action shortcut from the channel, i solved this by adding /me to my t9 list. As in other phone clients, it is also a good idea to add oftenly used nicks to the t9 list.

UtaIRC can't connect to multiple servers, or log text. It can't DCC. When entering text, the input box takes up the entire screen.

It was a great relief to find that it doesn't have the notify/PM bug in wlirc, i can continue typing even if a PM or notify window opens in the background.
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: FiXato on December 15, 2008, 11:52:02 AM
Thanks for the review Siiw :)
Perhaps a query window can be opened with /query nick?
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: Siiw on December 15, 2008, 12:21:58 PM
It can, and i have added a few of those to my favourites. It opens in the background then, and i have to cycle through all the tabs to open it.
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: FiXato on November 05, 2011, 10:19:21 PM
At the moment I'm using WeeChat through SSH. Instead of running the IRC client on my phone, I'm now running it on a remote Linux server to which I can connect using any SSH client.
I've decided to go this way because:
Since about a year back I also got tired of resource intensive GUI-based IRC clients on my desktop/laptop and was looking for an always-on solution that didn't require lots of resources on my computer, and wasn't limited to a single operating system.
Since I already had a VPS (Virtual Private Server; a server within a server) at a data centre, a bouncer could've fulfilled the always-on requirement. However, I'd still need an IRC client on ever computer I want to chat from, which still leaves the cross-platform issue and the difference in features between IRC clients, as well as the use of resources of the desktop.

The only solution, apart from QuasselIRC —which I didn't really like—, was a remote IRC client that ran on my VPS.
I've often heard of irssi, and I've tried it a couple of times. However, imho the configuration and defaults are too complex (and still lacking!).
Especially the lack of a vertical split, needing scripts for a simple nicklist, and Perl being the only scripting language, were and are a real turn-off for me.
Looking further, I found a newer alternative, WeeChat. WeeChat is actively developed by the Frenchman Sébastien "Flashcode" Helleu, is open source and accepts patches from others. Also, Flashcode listens to feature requests and bug reports and does his best to implement/fix them as soon as possible!
Best of all, the client has support for multiple scripting languages (Python, Perl, Lua, TCL, Guile and my favourite scripting language, Ruby) and has a lot of configuration settings, making it highly customisable.
It also has mouse support since about a half year, which makes it about as easy to use as a regular GUI client.
It being a terminal client (TUI as opposed to GUI), it's less of a resource hog and can run on my remote Linux server (as well as locally (optionally) under Windows or Mac OS X).
Over the past year (possibly longer now that I think of it) I've really grown attached to this client, and rarely use a GUI IRC client anymore. It's always connected by running it on the VPS inside a terminal multiplexer such as screen (and recently making the transition to tmux), and I can connect to it from multiple locations at the same time, from any operating system or device as long as it has Internet and an SSH client.
Though I could theoretically use the same instance of WeeChat from my mobile device, the limited resolution of and space on a mobile device sort of forced me to run a separate instance instead. On my usual connection I have way more server connections and channels open than have space for (nor would like to) on a mobile device. I also usually have my screen split in 8 'windows', for which there just is no space on a phone either.

A few of the features I really like of WeeChat (though most of them come through scripts):

clone_scanner: my own script that notifies me of users from the same host entering the channel.
A lot of these are features you probably won't find on your average mobile IRC client :D especially with the low resource use of just an ssh client locally compared to a fully fledged IRC client on a phone.

Of course there are some downsides:
Since the client runs remotely, if there is any lag between you and the server (which is a fair chance with 3G connections in areas where the connection keeps switching between transmitters/telephone poles) your text will appear slower on the screen than you type it, making it harder to quickly correct errors.

You also require an SSH server you can connect to with your mobile phone. Imho best solution is to use pubkey-authentication a separate password-protected key for your phone that you can reject in the event you lose your phone. Make sure you have a password on the key, or otherwise you'll open your server up for those who have access to your phone or find it...

You usually also don't have access to all keyboard shortcuts since most phone-keyboards and mobile ssh clients don't have support for a ctrl or alt/meta modifier key..

But all these cons still don't outweigh the previously mentioned pros imho. :)

I'll post some screenshots and pictures of it running on my phone in a few days.
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: jaycie105 on October 28, 2013, 05:17:46 AM
You posted this on my birthday :)
Also,what is an irc? i'm the type who doesn't understand those words
Title: Re: Proud Mobile IRC Addicts! (mobile IRC information inside ;))
Post by: FiXato on October 28, 2013, 12:10:38 PM
IRC stands for Internet Relay Chat; it is the chat protocol that Chat4All uses for its services.