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IRC (Internet Relay Chat) is a virtual meeting place where people from all over the world can meet and talk; you'll find the whole diversity of human interests, ideas, and issues here, and you'll be able to participate in group discussions on one of the many thousands of IRC channels, on hundreds of IRC networks, or just talk in private to family or friends, wherever they are in the world.

To use IRC you need a small application like mIRC, an IRC client for Windows that was written by Khaled Mardam-Bey. mIRC is a friendly IRC client that is well equipped with options and tools.

There is no restriction to the number of people that can participate in a given discussion, or the number of channels that can be formed on IRC. As a user you run a "client" program like mIRC which connects to a "server" in an IRC network. All servers are interconnected and pass messages from user to user over the IRC network. One server can be connected to several other servers and up to hundreds of clients.

key features:

UTF-8 support with font linking.
A powerful dynamic /help command.
Netscape, Mosaic and MS Internet Explorer support .... surf the www waves !!
An 'off you go' Toolbar.... and even Tooltips !

A very handy Switchbar.
A user programmable menu bar.
A simple and smart CTCP commands and Events handler.
Support for wav and midi sound files.

Colored text to ease reading.
Simple, fully configurable aliases.
Configurable popup menus.
Full DCC Send/Get/Chat support including passive DCC.

Full configurable fonts and colors and support of bold, underline and reverse text.
Built in Ident and Finger server.
A simple but powerful and safe built-in File server.
· A "Mark As Read" option has been added to the treebar, switchbar, toolbar and MDI popup menus to allow you to clear all flashing/highlighted windows.
· The $hfind() identifier has been extended to allow results to be saved to a @window listbox or passed to a command.
· An SSL connection issue has been fixed that prevented mIRC from connecting to servers with certificates that used unrecognized date formats.
· A hotlink display issue has been fixed that caused text to flicker when hovering the mouse over a link.
· SSL support for Subject Alternative Names (SAN) has been added when verifying whether a certificate is valid for the connection.
· A number of issues with the reload logs feature have been fixed, including incorrect line indentation and missing lines at the end of a log in some situations.
· An issue with the split long messages feature has been fixed which occurred when handling color formats in some contexts.
· An Address Book bug that prevented removal of an existing timed unignore has been fixed.
· The way incremental search works in channel nickname listboxes has been changed so that it behaves more like Windows explorer.
· The /localinfo -p option has been changed to use a random UPnP port outside the first 1056 services port range as some routers block these ports.
· An $inellipse() bug caused by a compiler optimization issue has been fixed.
· Other changes and bug fixes.
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