Computer Graphics (CS 4300) 2010S: IRC

As a convenience for the students in CS4300, we have set up an IRC channel #cs4300 on You can use this to talk amongst yourselves.

Please use this channel only for CS4300-related conversations. This is a public forum, and all the rules of conduct in the NEU academic integrity policy apply here.

This is not a reliable way to reach the course staff. We may or may not be monitoring conversation on this channel, and we may or may not be able to access conversation history. The official ways to reach the course staff are listed on the course homepage.

Introduction to IRC

IRC is a text-based chat client where people can join channels on IRC servers and communicate in near-real time. Everything you type will be sent to all other current members of the channel.

Here we will go over one configuration (this info was contributed by John Mendelewski). This method assumes you have a CCIS user account. If you do not have such an account, or if you wish to do it differently, read up on your preferred method.

Note that the the IRC server we are using,, appears to only accept connections from client machines within Northeastern University’s 155.33.* and 129.10.* networks.

  1. SSH into your favorite CCIS Linux or UNIX machine, for example,

  2. Once presented with a prompt, run the command screen. The screen command allows us to run programs that will live on this machine even though we will be logging off. This is useful, as this will allow us to run the IRC client even after we disconnect from the machine, and then can capture everything happening in the IRC channel.

  3. The screen should flash, possibly displaying a welcome message. Press enter till you are given a prompt again. From here, execute the command irssi. This is a console based IRC client. This is good, as we can run it from screen, and as said, keep the program running even after we leave. You can read up the web more details about how to use irssi.

  4. To connect to the CCIS IRC server, type in the irssi prompt: /connect Text should scroll down the screen.

  5. Once it stops, you should identify yourself with the server. First, if you haven’t already, register: /msg nickserv register some password. This will secure your CCIS nickname to you, and only you. After this, identify with the server if it hasn’t already: /msg nickserv identify some password. While doing the above, a number may show up at the bottom of your window. This means there is activity in a window that is not currently shown. To show this window, press <ESC> and that number.

  6. Once you are identified, join the CS4300 channel: /join #cs4300.

  7. Now that you are joined, press <CTRL> and “a” and “d”. This will “detach” your screen session. This means everything you are doing goes into a background process, waiting for you you to return. You should be back at the original prompt we started with when we first ssh’d. Feel free to log out of this machine with <CTRL>-d or typing logout (or closing your terminal).

  8. To get back to IRC, ssh back to the same machine and type screen -rd. This should take you back to your open irssi session. When you want to log out, <CTRL>-a-d to detach again.