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How do I install, start and configure bitlbee on Fedora?

asked 2014-02-18 13:45:47 -0600

ryanlerch gravatar image

updated 2015-03-28 10:29:55 -0600

I currently use an IRC-only client as my primary chat client for all IRC communications. I have just heard about the bitlbee tool that allows me to connect to it and forward all my IM accounts (google chat, facebook chat, etc) straight into my IRC client.

The question is how do I install and start and configure bitlbee on Fedora?

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answered 2014-02-18 14:08:39 -0600

ryanlerch gravatar image

updated 2014-02-20 14:24:11 -0600

For this example, we are going to set up a bitlbee server on localhost, and just point your chat client at it.

Installing bitlbee

First up, we need to install bitlbee. Since bitlbee is included in the default fedora repositories, you can either install with gnome-software, or with the command line:

sudo yum install bitlbee

Starting the bitlbee service

After installing, we need to start the bitlbee service. to start the bitlbee service, we run the following command in terminal:

sudo systemctl start bitlbee.service

Note that systemctl normally doesn't output anything here so to check that bitlbee has actually started, run the command:

sudo systemctl status bitlbee.service

And it should output something similar to:

 bitlbee.service - BitlBee IRC/IM gateway
    Loaded: loaded (/usr/lib/systemd/system/bitlbee.service; disabled)
    Active: active (running) since Wed 2014-02-12 14:54:35 EST; 1min 13s ago
  Main PID: 27148 (bitlbee)
    CGroup: /system.slice/bitlbee.service
            └─27148 /usr/sbin/bitlbee -D -n

Note also that just starting the service is not enough to make the bitlbee service restart every time you reboot. To ensure that bitlbee starts every time you reboot, enable the bitlbee service with:

sudo systemctl enable bitlbee.service

Connect to and configure bitlbee

Now, fire up your IRC client of choice, and configure a new connection to a server. By default, bitlbee runs on port 6667, so just set the new server address to localhost:6667.

Once you have connected to the server, bitlbee should have automatically joined you to the channel &bitlbee. This channel is where you will now send commands to to configure bitlbee.

Switch to the chat window for the &bitlbee channel, and type in the following command to create an account on your local bitlbee server for your IRC nick (obviously changing mypassword to your password):

register <mypassword>

Bitlbee will create an account for you and log you in, and should respond with a message like:

<root> Account successfully created * ryanlerch sets mode +R on ryanlerch

Everytime -- from now on -- when you reopen your IRC client you will need to identify yourself to the bitlbee server. This is done with the command:

identify <mypassword>

So i don't have to worry about registering every time, i just set up a connect command for the bitlbee server to always run:

/MSG &bitlbee identify <mypassword>

Setting up Accounts

Now you have bitlbee running and configured, we need to add a chat account to bitlbee. In this example, we are going to configure a Google Talk jabber account.

To set up a google account, run the following command in the &bitlbee channel:

account add jabber

Then tell the gtalk account to use oauth to authorise the account with the command: acc gtalk set oauth on

The default name format that google talk can sometimes also be a bit messed up, so tell bitlbee to use the full name of your contact when displaying it with the command:

account gtalk set nick_format %full_name

And then turn ... (more)

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Asked: 2014-02-18 13:45:47 -0600

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Last updated: Feb 20 '14