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IRC Commands and glossary of terms.
Welcome to our refrence guide of irc terms, and commands, let me start with the obvious IRC stands for Internet Relay Chat, it is an environment consisting of channels, also known as chat rooms. and users known by their nicks.
A channel usually starts with a # for instance #admin is the P10Link.net help channel, and Bobs channel might be #Bob. In a channel you will find a list of users, some of whom will be designated as operators by an @ at the start of their names, a channel operator is a person who is charged with looking after the channel and enforcing its rules, we'll get to their commands in a momment. Right now lets start by learning how to join a channel.
In IRC commands are specified by a / in the usual chat box, you send a command just a like a message to a channel or user, but with a / (and no space) before your text. The command to join a channel for instance is /join. To join the P10Link.net help channel #admin to ask for advice from our java chat for instance, you could type /join #admin which would join your the help channel.
Sometimes you will find you want to send a private message (sometimes refered to as a whisper) to another user, this can be done using the /msg command for instance to send a message saying hello to Bob we might type /msg Bob hello or /msg Bob hi this can be inconvienient however, so we can use /query Bob to open a chat session with Bob.
So far so simple, now lets try something else suppose your nickname is Fred and youve decided its a little boring, and youd like to change it to IamFred, you can do that with the /nick command, by typing /nick IamFred or perhaps KewlestChatter is more your style, so instead you might try /nick KewlestChatter and away you go with your new nick.
Now for the more difficult part, youve been chatting on P10Link.net a good long while and youve made some friends, and youve been promoted to bieng an operator, maybe even started your own channel! Great huh?
Well yes, but in order to be a good channel operator your going to need to know all about channel modes, channel modes are settings that designate some things in the channel for instance mode +o Bob makes Bob an operator, and mode +m makes the channel moderated, that is when only people with +v can can chat, another useful mode is +b which bans a user, but that ones a little trickier so we'll look at it in a minute, first lets start with how to op someone.
So your an op in a #Bob and your friend kiwi comes in and you decide youd like to make them an op, heres what you type /mode #bob +o kiwi simple enough, but whatabout if kiwi starts misbehaving and you dont want them to be an op anymore?
Well thats simple enough too, you just need to /mode #Bob -o kiwi and your troubles are over. Mind you typing /mode #bob +o kiwi and -o kiwi gets old fast, so the nice people that made irc decided to make /op kiwi and /deop kiwi do the same thing, just so you have to type less!
Now lets talk about that mode I mentioned a momment ago for moderating a channel, heres what thats all about sometimes you might not want to let everyone chat in a channel, perhaps your giving a lecture and you only want people to be able to see what you say, not say stuff back so you can moderate the channel, what that means is only operators and people with voice can chat... (more on voicing in a second) to set moderation in #bob you need only type /mode #bob +m and noone but the ops can talk now!
Aww but poor kiwi isnt an op anymore cause she misbehaved, but youd still like her to join in the lecture with you ops?
No trouble, you can give her voice, voice is for letting non ops talk in a moderated room, to give kiwi ops you need to set mode +v against her, so you need type /mode #bob +v kiwi or you can use /voice kiwi for short. Now supposing she starts ranting and raving, and you dont want her to be able to talk in your modded room anymore, then you just devoice her with /mode #bob -v kiwi arent these modes useful?
Now we come to the more difficult mode, good ol +b or Ban, now the purpose of the ban mode is obvious it bans users, but in order to ban someone we need to be a little smarter than when were oping or voicing, to begin with we need to know what a mask is, a mask tells the server things about a user that are a little more specific to them than their nick, kinda like a description.
Bans use masks to spot and bar entry to a user, kinda like your own automated bouncer, you give it a description it does its best not to let them in, all of which is great, but how do you know what someone's mask is?
Well for that we need to look up some details for instance my nick on IRC is memzy to find out my mask you can do /whois memzy which gets you something like this:
(firstname.lastname@example.org) : David Ford
See that bit at the top in the brackets, email@example.com?
Well you guessed it thats my mask that is!
Now before we can ban someone we need to understand a little more about just what that means, first its not a whole mask, it misses something, my nick... my whole mask is firstname.lastname@example.org which is great to know but what does it mean?
Well for starters the bit before the explanation mark is my nick on irc, memzy, and the next bit before the @ is my user name that I set my client to use, in just so happens I use the same nick as I do user, but I neednt have done. Now I hear you asking, yes but what about the stuff after the @ well that my friends is my computers address, its the really important bit!
Think about this, if you know my address you can ask the server not to except messages from that address.. kinda like a super smart mailman that knows when a letter is from your ex and wont deliver it.
So to ban me you might do /mode +b email@example.com but that its not that easy, lots of people mostly those using modems change their address's all the time, everytime they recconnect in fact!
So you ask what good is that then, if the address changes?
Well only SOME of the address changes, we just need to know what parts of the address change, ok well I'll spare you the boring stuff, and just let you know that the blueyonder.co.uk bit doesnt change and that to set a reasonably good ban that will normally work you need to use /mode #bob memzy*@*.blueyonder.co.uk banning is a little difficult but hopefully you can figure the rest out on your own in time, you can always go to #admin to ask for help if you need it (/join #admin).
Now youve banned someone from your channel, but there still in there!
Thats OK cause youve told the bouncers not let them in already, all you need to do now is kick them out of the door, to remove someone from #bob you do just that, kick them!
So after banning me from #bob you can type /kick memzy and then im gone.
Now thats the end of this little tutorial, I hope its helped you its been great fun writing it, aurevoir!