mIRC
Original author(s)Khaled Mardam-Bey
Developer(s)mIRC Co. Ltd.
Initial release28 February 1995 (1995-02-28)
Stable release
7.76[1] Edit this on Wikidata / 7 January 2024
Written inC/C++[2]
Operating systemWindows XP and later
PlatformIA-32
TypeIRC client
LicenseProprietary/Trialware
Websitewww.mirc.com

mIRC (Arabic: إم آي آر سي) is an Internet Relay Chat (IRC) client for Windows. It is a fully functional chat utility and its integrated scripting language makes it extensible and versatile.[3] The software was first released in 1995 and has since been described as "one of the most popular IRC clients available for Windows."[3] mIRC is shareware and requires payment for registration after the 30-day evaluation period.[4]

History

mIRC was created by Khaled Mardam-Bey, a British programmer born in Jordan to a Syrian father and a Palestinian mother.[5][6] He began developing the software in late 1994, and released its first version on 28 February 1995.[7]

Mardam-Bey states that he decided to create mIRC because he felt the first IRC clients for Windows lacked some basic IRC features. He then continued developing it due to the challenge and the fact that people appreciated his work. The author states that its subsequent popularity allowed him to make a living out of mIRC.[8] He also jokingly states that the "m" in mIRC stands for "moo" or "MU" (meaning 'nothing' in Japanese and Korean).[9]

mIRC 5.91 is the final version to support 16-bit Windows;[10] 6.35 is the last to support Windows 95, NT 4.0, 98, and ME. The current version supports Windows XP and later.[11]

The application makes an appearance in the 2006 music video for "Boten Anna" by Basshunter.[12]

Main features

mIRC has a number of distinguishing features. One is its scripting language which is further developed with each version. The scripting language can be used to make minor changes to the program like custom commands (aliases),[3] but can also used to completely alter the behavior and appearance of mIRC. Another claimed feature is mIRC's file sharing abilities, via the DCC protocol, featuring a built-in file server.[13]

Starting with mIRC 7.1, released on 30 July 2010,[14] Unicode and IPv6 are supported.

mIRC scripting

Main article: mIRC scripting language

mIRC's abilities and behaviors can be altered and extended using the embedded mIRC scripting language. mIRC includes its own GUI scripting editor,[3] with help that has been described as "extremely detailed".[3]

Due to the level of access the language has to a user's computer — for example, being able to rename and delete files — a number of abusive scripts have been made. One example of abuse was that executed with the $decode identifier which decodes a given encoded string.[15][16] The issue was reported in August 2001; even five months later, users were still being reported as having fallen prey, tricked into executing commands on their systems which result in "handing control of [their] mIRC over to somebody else".[17] This led to changes being made in mIRC version 6.17: according to the author, $decode is now disabled by default, and various other features which can be considered dangerous are now lockable.[14]

Reception

mIRC has been downloaded over 40 million times from CNET's Download.com service.[18] In 2003, Nielsen/NetRatings ranked mIRC among the top ten most popular Internet applications.[19]

References

  1. ^ "Latest News".
  2. ^ "mIRC: Personal FAQ - Language". mirc.com. Archived from the original on 19 July 2023. Retrieved 19 July 2023.
  3. ^ a b c d e Smith, Chris (2004). "Hack #20 Automate IRC with Scripting". In Paul Mutton\ (ed.). IRC Hacks: 100 Industrial-Strength Tips & Tools. O'Reilly Media, Inc. pp. 71–74. ISBN 9780596006877.
  4. ^ "Registration". mirc.com.
  5. ^ "mIRC: Personal FAQ". www.mirc.com. Retrieved 2023-10-21.
  6. ^ "mIRC: Personal FAQ". www.mirc.com. Retrieved 2023-12-27.
  7. ^ "mIRC: Khaled Mardam-Bey". www.mirc.com.
  8. ^ "mIRC: Personal FAQ". mirc.com. Archived from the original on 19 July 2023. Retrieved 19 July 2023.
  9. ^ "mIRC: Personal FAQ - Meaning". mirc.com. Archived from the original on 19 July 2023. Retrieved 19 July 2023.
  10. ^ "mIRC 6.0 drops 16bit support". mirc.com.
  11. ^ "mIRC download for 6.35 and latest version". mirc.com. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
  12. ^ Ernie Smith (13 February 2018). "Why Did Slack Win Out Over IRC, Anyway?". Vice. Archived from the original on 7 November 2020. Retrieved 12 June 2022.
  13. ^ "mIRC FAQ: Section 6". mirc.com. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
  14. ^ a b "mIRC: Latest News". mirc.com. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
  15. ^ "mIRC Backdoors - An Advanced Overview". originally by ReDeeMeR. Securiteam.com Windows NT Focus. 24 February 2002.
  16. ^ Ahmadi Bidakhwidi, Mohammad (2005) "mIRC Worm" Archived 2012-11-03 at the Wayback Machine. The Ethical Hacker.
  17. ^ Lo, Joseph, ed. (January 4, 2002). "IRC News Jan 04 02 Happy 2002 - //$decode trojan keeps going and going... " Archived 2012-08-01 at the Wayback Machine. and
    "Aug 30 01 mIRC $decode() exploit." IRChelp.org.
  18. ^ "mIRC". Download.CNet.com. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
  19. ^ "InternetNews Traffic Patterns 2003". InternetNews.com. 22 October 2003. Retrieved 2008-08-13.

Further reading