Default application for IRC

James Freer at
Tue Jul 15 17:57:00 UTC 2014

On Tue, 15 Jul 2014, Elfy wrote:

> On 25/06/14 11:58, Simon Steinbeiß wrote:
>> Hey everyone,
>> as our next release is not LTS we're reviewing some of our default app 
> choices and considering to move away from XChat, as it hasn't been maintained 
> as actively lately as e.g. its fork hexchat. [1]
>> We've discussed this in today's community meeting and the outcome of this 
> first review was a bit mixed. While neither of the present team members 
> really use/d pidgin for IRC, it could still be enough as an easy way for 
> users to get on IRC to get support. Additionally there's the webchat option 
> on
>> So this is what it comes down to (at least the way I see it):
>> 1) Should we replace XChat as our default IRC client?
>> 2) Is the IM app we already ship (pidgin) and the webchat option enough to 
> replace XChat?
>> 3) Should we use hexchat over 1) or 2)?
>> I personally wouldn't mind replacing XChat and trying something new, mostly 
> because it doesn't seem maintained. I still have to take both pidgin and 
> hexchat for a spin though, because I haven't used the latter at all and the 
> other I haven't used for IRC.
>> I propose that (at least) members of the Xubuntu team try these apps for 
> real too and we have another – more informed and experience-based – 
> discussion at the next team meeting.
>> Cheers
>> Simon
>> [1]
> Just a reply to this following the meeting today in which I got tasked 
> to do something - I fully blame Simon and Lyz for that :p
> So - hexchat.
> Currently I see 2 issues with it.
> 1 - Alt + A - used to mark oneself as away in both Xchat and Hexhat. It 
> works in Xchat. There is a bug reported at github for hexchat, 
> Currently the only response to that bug from a dev is "It works 
> sometimes on some platforms, I'm not entirely sure what happened but 
> that is a bug yes."
> 2 - Ctrl +F - used in both to search in a channel as expected. In 
> hexchat this results in the app window resizing to accomodate the search 
> 'box'. I have had to rewwork the way I had devilspie laying out apps for 
> me as hexchat went oversized in the window. 
> Currently the only response to that bug from a dev is "I'd like to make 
> it a little more compact, I don't know if I can make it clip instead of 
> resize though."
> I've not seen any other issues while using it.
> My concern is that we are looking to swap one IRC client, which while 
> dev less at least works, for one where there is a dev, but little 
> appears to get done with regard to bugs. Frying pan to fire springs to mind.
> I'm -1 to removing xchat for hexchat given that.
> Ubuntu Forum Council Member
> Xubuntu QA Lead

I have used Xchat for several years with no problems. I recently started using 
Chatzilla as it's a more attractive interface and auto logs into about a dozen 
channels for me. If hexchat has bugs and devs would prefer to leave out Xchat 
then why the need to replace it.

As there's no shortage of space on the DVD iso Xubuntu could offer a setup 
version of emacs with email, irc (ERC), Org and other stuff.


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