The Future of Irssi

Posted by Alexander Færøyon June 10th 2014


Irssi hasn’t been under active development for the last few years. We want to change that. To make it easier for new contributors to get involved and stick around, we moved to where most open source contributors are spending their time: the source is now maintained on Github.

Contribution Model

The repositories that are currently available at will, over a period of the next month, be migrated to our newly created Github organization. This means that no new commits will be made to our Subversion repositories and the Git repositories available on Github are from today the official way of getting the source code of Irssi. The primary Irssi client repository has already been migrated to Github and is available at

We will, starting today, expect contributors to fork the official Irssi repositories on Github, do their changes on a feature branch, and submit Github pull requests to us. The team will then review your changes and hopefully, together, we will be able to get your code into the official Irssi repository. This will make getting your contributions reviewed and merged smoother and it has the added benefit that your patches appears to be coming from you which in turn is helping to make the gap between being a core developer and a contributor close to non-existing.

Issue Tracking

This is one of the more controversial changes. Over time, you guys have submitted tons of bugs to our bug tracker at only to see them rot.

We will, starting today, stop using and use Github’s issue tracker instead.

We have decided not to do any automated migration of the database. We realize that if we migrate everything over to Github, 1:1, it will only end up rotting in two bug trackers rather than in just one.

We hope to see interested contributors help us checking which bugs that are still affecting Irssi and resubmit them to our Github issue tracker.

We will manually go over opened bugs that contains patches to ensure that no code is left behind in the old tracker.

The bug tracker will remain online as a reference, but we will redirect to Github for people interested in reporting bugs.


Submitting scripts is historically something you guys have been good at.

The way submitting scripts is currently done is that you write an email to [email protected] and someone from our team will manually add the script to the website. We’re well aware that we’ve lagged behind requests to add new scripts and update existing ones so we’re hoping to improve that too.

From now on, new scripts must be submitted, in a pull request, to the irssi/scripts repository. The repository contains a description on how to contribute.

This will make it much easier for our contributors to both add and maintain their scripts in the repository. It will also make it a lot easier for us to review and get code into the repository.

Scriptassist Users

For users using, you can start using the new repository right away using:

/set scriptassist_script_sources

Otherwise, you can wait a month and the website will be migrated and everything should be working as usual, without you having to touch anything.

Official IRC Channels

We are moving the official development and user support channel to #irssi on freenode. Historically, we have had our official development channel on IRCnet, a social channel on EFnet and a user support channel on freenode, but we realize it makes more sense to keep everything together at freenode.

Closing Words

The changes to our contribution model will also affect people who are pulling from Subversion or automatically.

Access to our Subversion repositories will be revoked and the move of to the new Github site will happen on July 31st, 2014. Until then, neither of the two systems will be maintained and no new content will be published there.

Until the migration to Github is completed, you can find our official script repository at tomaw will continue being in charge of scripts and will happily review your pull requests on Github.

Feel free to reach out to anyone within the development team for questions, comments or ideas. We are hanging out in the #irssi channel on freenode, EFnet and IRCnet. You can contact us using email at [email protected] You are also welcome to PM me directly for questions; I am ahf on most of the larger IRC networks.

On behalf of the Irssi development team,