Draft Instantbird for Windows instructions

These were put together from working with @zoonini, @jcastaneda and @abletec. They’re a draft instructions and hiding the IRC server status messages aren’t dealt with in these instructions yet.

Step 1. Create a Slack account for yourself in the WordPress team.

Step 2. Obtain your IRC gateway information from the Slack page.

Your IRC Gateway account information will look something like this using my username and obscured password.

Host: wordpress.irc.slack.com
User: jan_dembowski
Pass: wordpress.XxXxXxXxXxXxXXxXXxxX

Step 3. Install Instantbird for Windows.

Once installed the application will run for the first time and setup an account for you. The IRC protocol is not displayed by default, scroll to the bottom and select “Show all protocols”.

Step 4. Select the IRC protocol and proceed. You will be asked for a “Username:” and “Server:”

Enter your username from the Slack Gateway page. In my case that would be “jan_dembowski”

For the servername use “wordpress.irc.slack.com”

Step 5. You will be prompted for a password. Leave that field blank, in a later step the real username and password will be enters via the configuration editor.

Step 6. You will be prompted for a Local Alias. This is for display purposes only and can be left blank.

Step 7. Uncheck the box labeled “Connect this account automatically.” It won’t work at this step and can be enabled later.

Step 8. Close the Accounts window. This is to get it out of the way.

Step 9. Open the Options dialog box. In Windows this can be accomplished via the key board shortcuts alt-T and then the O key.

Step 10. Under the Advanced tab go to the Config Editor. From that tab you can use the alt-E keyboard shortcut. A dialog box will appear and you’ll need to bypass the warning by clicking “I’ll be careful, I promise!”

Step 11. Here’s where it gets tricky. You need to add two new entries into the configuration editor. This can be accomplished by right clicking inside the now opened configuration editor and then use the keyboard shortcut W then S. This will create a new string value.

In that new dialog box paste in this preference name.

messenger.account.account1.options.username

And hit enter.

The next part will be to enter the string value. This is the Slack IRC Gateway user field. With me as an example I used “jan_dembowski”. This is the real user ID field for the Slack IRC gateway. The one previously entered in at install time isn’t actually used.

Now for the gateway password preference. Once again right click inside the configuration, use the keyboard shortcut W then S and create this new string value.

messenger.account.account1.options.serverPassword

And in the next dialog box enter your account password from the IRC Slack gateway page. For my example I’ll use “wordpress.XxXxXxXxXxXxXXxXXxxX”

Step 12. Exit the Configuration Editor and click OK on the Options box.

Step 13. Connect to Slack. Using the keyboard shortbut alt-T then A then O. This will tell Instantbird to connect to the Slack IRC gateway for the first time,

If all the steps were done correctly the following will happen: your Instantbird will lock up and become unresponsive. Once it calms down you should be in the #announcements Slack channel.

There will be messages like this littered in the client.

6:26:46 PM – Channel mode -v set by macmanx.

6:31:22 PM – Channel mode -v set by johnparkinson.

Those are very distracting but I think they can be hidden with a CSS plugin for Instantbird. More on that later.