Undernet IRC FAQ [Part II]
Last updated April 17, 2002: Mark W. (Banjo)
Version 1 - By Paul Grant (Grant)
Version 2-3 - Written by Mandar Mirashi (email@example.com)
Version 4 - Written/Updated by Mark W. (Banjo)
Version 4.1 - Last updated April 20 2020: WildMan
The FAQ consists of answers to several frequently asked questions about
Undernet/IRC. The Undernet User Committee (user-com) prepared this document in the hopes of giving the new comer a basic understanding of the way things work on Undernet and IRC in general. We hope that the information contained here and in the other documents and faqs enhances your IRC experience. Undernet prides itself as being the friendly IRC network. We hope that, having read these documents, you can share the knowledge with others to keep up the friendly tradition of Undernet. Thank you.
The FAQ consists of the following sections.
The Undernet (for the newcomer)
The Undernet (how can you participate?)
Section I: The Undernet (for the IRC newcomer)
- What's a net?
- So far, so good. Now, why's this net called the "Undernet"? (unchanged)
- How do I find the closest Undernet server to me?
- Whom do I approach if I have questions?
- How do I find channels on Undernet
- .. can I join some mailing list which helps with IRC questions, or discusses IRC in general?
- Where can I find information on the World Wide Web about Undernet?
- Undernet in general.
Section II : The Undernet (How can I participate?)
- So, how do I get to be an "IRC op"? Why can't I be one?
- How do I apply for a link for my server to the Undernet? What are the requirements?
- How do I volunteer to do some work for the Undernet? No, I'm not looking for an O line. I just like being nice and helpful to people. How do I participate?
- I have some ideas for the future design of IRC. I may also be interested in doing some programming for the Undernet. Whom do I approach?
While we will do our best to keep the FAQs on this site updated. Undernet is always growing and changing for the better.
If there is a question that you find frequently asked, but not mentioned, or any inaccurate information, we ask you to send all suggested additions, corrections, deletions, comments, etc. to either firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com (The current author).
You are always welcome to email the user committee firstname.lastname@example.org with any comments or suggestions to improve Undernet or the documents project.
Section I: The Undernet (for the IRC newcomer)
1. What's a net?
A net (short for network) is a group of computers joined together to share and transmit information.
These computers (called servers) all run a common program designed to respond to commands from you (the client).
The servers are also responsible for transmitting information between the various other servers, which makes it possible for people to chat with each other no matter what server you or they are on.
*(ed. note: If another doc. contains a more detailed explanation, we'll put a link to it here)*
2. So far, so good. Now, why's this net called the "Undernet"?
The term "Undernet" was suggested in jest by some of the original operators (dl, Wildthang and Whizzard) who started this network.
As time went by, the name stuck. :-) Upon hearing the name people often think that it's a net where something illegal goes on - which isn’t the case at all.
On the other hand, the name also imparts a mysterious angle to the IRC net. On the whole, it's a very friendly net with an easy going atmosphere.
Most people are nice and helpful to newcomers, and Undernet prides itself as being the friendly IRC net.
3. How do I find the closest Undernet server to me?
Luckily, for you, all Undernet servers follow names of the format:
Thus, you can easily locate the closest server to you. In most cases, this also turns out to be closest netwise as well.
You can always find servers close to you by visiting Undernet's web site at Undernet Website and then clicking on the server link, or go directly to the Servers LIST
There you will find a list of all current active servers. You can copy/paste the server list into your IRC client (program) or you can enter the information on the command line of your IRC client.
The command for connecting to a server is /server servername port (NOTE: do not forget the port number, such as 6667)
Example /server chicagi.il..us.undernet.org 6667
*note = server ports can range from 6660 up to 7000 (The most commonly used port is 6667, and it is the default port of many IRC clients).
You can also connect to Undernet via a random server in your geographical area as follows:
us.undernet.org 6667 - USA
eu.undernet.org 6667 – Europe
ca.undernet.org 6667 – Canada
eu6.undernet.org 6667 - European servers that support IPv6 clients
us6.undernet.org 6667 - USA servers that support IPv6 clients
You can try a /server countrycode.undernet.org and see if that works for you. (again, don't forget the port number)
4. Whom do I approach if I have questions?
You are always welcome on the help channels:
For help and information on everything related to Undernet IRC Network.
We will do our best to help you with any other questions too (Undernet user-driven projects, routing issues and website issues), and if we can't answer your question, we'll do our best to point you to a channel that can help you.
You are welcome to lurk and learn on #userguide. #userguide is also the place to discuss ideas on how to improve Undernet, and your thoughts and ideas are always welcome on the channel.
For general IRC related help.
We will do our best to help you with general questions related to IRC/mIRC, and if we can't answer your question, we'll do our best to point you to a channel that can help you.
You are welcome to lurk and learn on #help. Your thoughts and ideas are always welcome on the channel.
This channel is an IRC Operator, (IRCop), help channel.
The channel provides assistance with channel takeovers, flooding, harassment and other forms of IRC abuse.
At #Zt, you can also regain ops on your non-registered channel as required.
There is no idling allowed and you will be expected to part once you receive the help you require (see the faq "how to report abuse and harassment").
This channel is the official help channel for Undernet channel service.
You can get answers to your questions about x and about channel registrations in general. Also, username registration questions are welcome here.
Channel transfers, new email addresses and other help related to channel service is available. You are allowed to sit and watch on #cservice provided you do not disrupt the channel.
There are also help and chat channels on just about any topic you can imagine, see section 1-5 for instructions on how to search for channels on Undernet.
Please understand that help channels, like everything else about The Undernet are run by volunteers who donate their time to help other Undernet users.
These help channels can get very busy, and the helpers are often helping several people at once.
When you visit these channels, you must be patient, someone will help you when your turn comes. Do not send to the channel too often.
A good rule of thumb is to wait 5 minutes before you ask your question again. The helpers will never ignore you even if, in your time of need, it may appear that way.
Another avenue is via email:
General IRC/Undernet help and for discussions of Undernet related matters.
You are welcome to post suggestions here.
Cservice mailing list
NOTE: Cservice mailing list is for user questions and problems relating to X and user names only; it is not an open discussion list.
If you have a problem or question about a specific server, use the command /admin for contact info.
5. How do I find channels on Undernet
Undernet has a built in search feature for finding channels that might interest you. All you have to do is type /list searchword.
Example: To find a list of help channels you can type: /list help
If you want to find channels about cats, you can type: /list cat
You will then get lists of all channels with your search word in its topic or channel name.
The /list results will usually show you the topics of the channels which can give you a better idea of what a particular channel is about.
6. ..can I join some mailing list which helps with IRC questions, or discusses IRC in general?
The user committee list:
email@example.com - has been set up for people who are requesting general help regarding IRC questions.
Send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with the word "help" in the body which will send you back further information on how to subscribe.
To learn how to find information about other Undernet email lists, as well as how to use the majordomo email list system, point your browser to:
Mailing list user guide
7. Where can I find information pertaining to Undernet on the internet?
Undernet WWW URLs:
NOTE: These web sites have a wealth of information about Undernet in general User-Com, the Undernet user committee and the Undernet Channel Services (CService).
They all contain their own unique information. So click on all the links of each page to get all the information they have to offer.
Reading and familiarizing yourself with this information will enhance you IRC experience.
8. Undernet in general
Yet another goal of the Undernet is to provide a better environment for users to communicate in, with protection against malicious users who try to work *against* IRC and its principles.
The Undernet has an improved server-server protocol which disallows gaining ops during a net split (op riders), and makes intentional nick collisions impossible.
NOTE: Undernet uses a proxyscan that scans for clones and insecure proxies when you connect to the net.
If you get a message from the server and it won't let you connect try correcting the problem.
If you can't connect and you recieve from server an error stating you are G-Lined, message please contact:
When sending your email, please include the server message, thet IP used to connect and any other information you think may help the abuse team to better help you.
Undernet exist to provide a free of charge, all volunteer run worldwide network where people can communicate in real time in a stable friendly atmosphere.
One of the reasons Undernet was formed was to provide a network where the Admins/IRCops and other volunteers are friendly and accessible to the users of the network.
We strive to do our best to help the users and protect users from abuse. The committees, web sites, and email lists are all provided to help you and to enhance you IRC experience.
Feel free to use these resources.
Section II : The Undernet (for people on other nets)
1. So, how do I get to be an "IRC op"? Why can't I be one?
The Undernet Admins DO NOT give ops to people who *ask* for them.
If you participate in the net by helping people, and in general following proper Undernetiquette, you might merit attention and you may be suggested for an official position.
IRC ops are scrutinized carefully before being added.
Basically, no IRCop position is handed out to people who:
- are hardly around
- mearly sit on help channels while ignoring pleas for help from their fellow users
- want ops just for kill power
- want ops because it gives them a sense of "power" over other users, and to look "cool"
Remember, asking for IRCop status only makes your case *worse*.
If you're worthy, and others feel that you're competent enough, you'll be approached to volunteer for IRC oper (IRCop).
For a better understanding about the duties and responsibilities of an IRCop, read the "Oper FAQ (for non-operators)" on this site.
2. How do I apply for a link for my server to the Undernet? What are the requirements?
The minimum requirements for linking a server to Undernet is a dedicated machine running 24 hours, 7 days a week.
You must be running the latest Undernet IRCD (no windows machines allowed).
If you would like more information, as well as instructions for applying for a test link to Undernet, please go to the following web page: Routing-Com Undernet
People who wish to link their server to Undernet are expected to have the expertise needed to operate an IRC server and knowledge of how the Internet works.
If the above information doesn't make much sense to you, then you are probably not knowledgeable enough to host a server on Undernet at this time.
3. How do I volunteer to do some work for the Undernet? No, I'm not looking for an O line. I just like being nice and helpful to people. How do I participate?
The Undernet is *always* looking for people like you.
Because Undernet continues to grow, we are always short of volunteers to help other people.
Have you benefited from your experience with the Undernet? Have you enjoyed your time on IRC here? We encourage you to give back to the net what you got from it.
You are encouraged to help.
Familiarize yourself with frequently asked questions and their answers; it would take a BIG load off many of the operators who were quite selflessly devoted to helping you, when you started off.
You can join the user-com mailing list (email@example.com) with the word "help" in the body (for information on how to subscribe).
Or, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org directly and ask them what you should do to volunteer. You will then get an email explaining the proper process.
Here is an brief explanation of how you can subscribe to the user-com list.
The Undernet has set up a Users' Committee to receive input from users like yourself.
To subscribe to the mailing list, send mail to email@example.com with "subscribe user-com" In the body.
Please do what you can. Every little bit counts!
4. I may be interested in doing some programming for the Undernet. Whom do I approach?
The Undernet is always on the search of new solutions to existing problems.
If you think you can help us in this endeavor, welcome aboard!
You can join #coder-com, where you can discuss IRC related programming issues and you are welcome to subscribe to the coder-com mailing list (firstname.lastname@example.org with "subscribe coder-com" in the body).
You will then be subscribed and you can begin to tell the other coders about your ideas.
After a period of discussion, and depending upon everyone's views, you may be given the "go ahead" to program it!
Yes, watch *your* code being run on servers around the world, with your name in our acknowledgements.
The Undernet programming team is a tightly knit set of enthusiastic individuals. Feel free to participate.
As with any email list, there are rules and conventions followed. When in doubt, ask before you do anything that may upset the list.
The Undernet has set up an Undernet IRCd coders' committee.
To subscribe to the mailing list, send mail to email@example.com with "subscribe coder-com" in the body.
Join #coder-com while on IRC.
Thanks to CArLiLLoS, Py, and cyn for their thoughts and suggestions.
Thanks to Mmmm and grant who's work was the foundation for this FAQ.
he ircII help pages:
IRCprimer by Nicholas Pioch.
alt.irc FAQ by Helen Trillian Rose Davis.
The many Undernet web pages and help channels