10 years of Irssi use and I switched to WeeChat last weekend

I started using Irssi almost 10 years ago when I first started trolling wandering around the world of IRC. My main use is to run it in a screen and stay connected all the time. To chat I'll just ssh into the server and reconnect to the screen. Generally I leave my terminal open, stretched across the top of my monitor so it's really wide but only about 8 or 10 lines high. This way I can keep IRC visible all day long and respond quickly to questions.

I've customized irssi with custom highlights and commands and all has been well, save one thing: bug 310 - vertical splits. Irssi can't do vertical window splits and with the trends giving us widescreen monitors, horizontal splits aren't really useful to me. The bug has been open since 2005 and I've all but given up on it.

Then the other day Chris McDonald claimed the unfortunately named WeeChat was superior to Irssi. I was all ready to defend Irssi's honor but I read through the documentation and WeeChat was pretty compelling - most notably its support for vertical splits!

So, long story short, I switched last week and it's awesome. I don't miss Irssi at all and in fact WeeChat offers me things I never even knew I'd want (like per-buffer history when hitting the up-arrow). I've customized it so it essentially looks like Irssi (no nickname list, etc.) and I've added a lot of aliases to make it easier for me to use (mostly vim keys). If you're an Irssi user you owe it to yourself to at least read their docs and see what you think.


weechat's good.
but if you dont need the features and you're used to irssi, no biggy. irssi works well.

For example i dislike splits. I also dislike heavy coloring. And weird hilights and channel switches.

I like simple and readable. Irssi delivers that. Weechat delivers it too, but, that means learning new commands for no gain :)
-- zu, 09 Apr 2012
I turned off the stuff I didn't like but it's true, if I didn't find splits so useful I wouldn't have switched. Everything but splits is just icing. :)
-- Wil Clouser, 09 Apr 2012
I have found that weechat seems to use more CPU than irssi, especially if you are in a high traffic channel. irssi will sit at about 10-15% CPU usage for me, but weechat will use 90% on the same channels. It all comes from the one high volume channel but, if I leave that channel it is fine and uses next to nothing.
What annoys me is that I can /filter the high volume channel and make it disappear etc, but it still uses the processing power for the channel regardless so there's no point filtering it.
Note that I'm using a low power SBC as my server with irc on it, so this may not be an issue on regular laptops, desktops etc. but I find irssi better CPU wise. weechat seems to handle connecting to slack better (couldn't get irssi to do it) and I like some of weechat's out of the box features compared to irssi so I am trying to stick with it.
-- Catfish, 12 May 2015
I switched to Weechat a few months ago after, like you, many years with Irssi and I can't do anything but agree with you. Weechat is indeed superior.
-- Martin Pola, 22 Feb 2016
A really easy way to make portable Weechat configuration is by using InWee ( https://github.com/susam/inwee ). I have been using this tool for a year now and it makes it possible to keep all my WeeChat configuration in a single file and pipe it into WeeChat using the command: inwee file.
-- grindhold, 15 Sep 2016
Thanks grindhold. That looks interesting.
-- clouserw, 16 Sep 2016
I'm in the same boat. I want to switch to weechat and I even tried, but I didn't have the patience to turn off all the noise to make it more irssi-like so I went back to irssi. Maybe I'll try again.
-- Alex Clark, 10 Apr 2012
For the record, irssi actually has support for per-buffer (well, per-window) message history. It's enabled with the /set window_history on option.
-- 00Davo, 20 Apr 2012
could you sharer your settings for weechat that makes it behave more like vim?
-- Thomas, 23 Sep 2012
could you sharer your settings for weechat that makes it behave more like vim?

weechat is actually pretty unfriendly about sharing settings. I wanted to share my changes in the original post but weechat just mixes your changes in with the defaults across 13 .conf files making it hard to have portable settings. If there were a way to give you the changes I would, but I don't know how.
-- Wil Clouser, 23 Sep 2012
could you not just tar it and upĆ³ad / mail the config or ask in weechat irc ;-) ?
-- newsgr, 19 May 2013
Well he obviously said he is an IRC troll. So obviously he won't read the doc enough nor ask in weechat's irc channel.

I have a penis.
-- Jack the Saviour, 11 May 2014

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