Tues Sept 28, 2021

After ~anthony and I set up wggen(1), we could properly access IRC outside of ssh(1) (on our laptops, phones, etc).

The next missing piece of the IRC puzzle was setting up a bouncer. For those less familiar with IRC (read: me 6 months ago), a bouncer is simply a special IRC client that is always on, staying in the channels for you, listening. When you connect, you then connect to the bouncer, which feeds you missed messages.

This is necessary because IRC has no concept of history or buffered messages built in. So if you're not active on the network, there's no way to get missed messages.

Of course bouncers provide all sorts of other nice features--a single login point for multiple networks (garbash, libera.chat, etc), auto-away, logging support, etc.

For our users on this tilde, we wanted to make sure they could have chat history without having to set up their own bouncer.

We picked soju(1) 1, since I've set it up before and I'm a general fan of the software coming from the sourcehut team. It was relatively painless to set up on OpenBSD:

$ pkg_add go sqlite3 scdoc # dependencies
$ git clone https://git.sr.ht/~emersion/soju/
$ cd soju
$ make
# make install

Then, I added a new _soju user using adduser(8) and created the cfg to listen on our wireguard port in /home/_soju/soju.cfg:

listen irc+insecure://
db sqlite3 /home/_soju/soju.db

Finally, I used sojuctl(1) to add myself as a user:

$ sojuctl -config /home/_soju/soju.cfg create-user alex -admin

Add made a small /etc/rc.d script:

daemon="/usr/local/bin/soju -config /home/_soju/soju.cfg"

. /etc/rc.d/rc.subr


rc_cmd "$1"

And enabled and started soju:

# rcctl enable soju
# rcctl start soju

We're still ironing out the kinks in the user registration process, but the current process is to connect to the soju instance first and add the local network like so:

In irssi:

/network add -sasl_username <login> -sasl_password <password> -sasl_mechanism PLAIN garbash
/server add -auto -net garbash irc.garbash.com 6677
/connect garbash

Once connected, start a DM with the BouncerServ (provided by soju)

/msg BouncerServ help
 network create -name garbash -addr irc+insecure://localhost:6667

Finally, modify our garbash network username to run soju in "single upstream mode" (aka it should only connect to this one network) by changing our username to be /garbash (the network we just created):

/network modify -sasl_username <login>/garbash garbash
/connect garbash

And 10 commands and 2 connections later, we have a bouncer!