Irssi 1.2.0 OTR Migration Path

Posted on February 12th 2019

With the release of Irssi 1.2.0 we now bundle the OTR plug-in as part of the Irssi source code. During the import phase of the irssi-otr codebase we fixed a number of issues, but one of them caused us to break backwards compatibility for old irssi-otr users.

With the updated OTR implementation the secret keys of the user is no longer stored with an account name of $nickname@$server (for example:, but is rather stored with the network (or chatnet if you like) name from Irssi (for example: liberachat). This should remove the issue that some users have reported where if they connect to another server on a given network the OTR implementation generates new keys for you.

You can see your list of OTR keys in Irssi using /otr info.

Upgrade Path

This requires a bit of manual work, but if you look at your ~/.irssi/otr directory you should have 3 files:

  • otr.fp - containing the fingerprints of your OTR buddies.
  • otr.instag - containing the tags from OTR.
  • otr.key - containing your secret keys.

In otr.fp and otr.key you should manually open these files and modify the old strings to the new format. The otr.key file is the most important one since it contains the secret key material. The file contains an s-expression like structure where the account name key can be found in the (name name-goes-here) tuple. The otr.fp file contains a list of known fingerprints. Correct the account name from your preview keys there as well.