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Is there a nice way to set up an IRC server for my wireless home network, running on an old Mac Mini?

On other forums people have recommended compiling IRCD-Hybrid for OS X. I have Homebrew installed and it contains a formula for ngIRCd; would that work?

Or should I give up and just use the Bonjour functionality built into iChat?

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Since you have Homebrew installed, ngircd is very simple to install and configure.

Install ngIRCd

$ brew install ngircd

Add /usr/local/sbin to your PATH

$ vi ~/.bash_profile

edit the config file (very easy to follow, even for a beginner, as the defaults are just fine for everything.) Note the path may be different for you to homebrew / ngircd version folders.

$ cd /usr/local/mxcl-homebrew-697d2ae/Cellar/ngircd/17.1/etc/
$ vi ngircd.conf

Here's a sample config file, should you need it.

Verify your config, if you like:

$ ngircd --configtest

Then simply start the server:

$ ngircd
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I should note that the default Cellar location is now /usr/local/Cellar – Austin Hyde Jan 18 '15 at 1:39

There are a couple packages available via Mac Ports. If you haven't used macports it's just like YUM or apt-get on linux.

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