Updates on the matrix<>IRC bridge

by Allie

Update: We no longer have an official Matrix bridge. Please see our FAQ about Matrix for more information about using Matrix on Libera.Chat.

Hello Libera.Chat users,

We are aware that the Libera.Chat matrix<>IRC bridge (operated by Element Matrix Services, ‘EMS’) has experienced a number of issues as of late, including silently dropping messages, dropping connections, and leaking information about the existence of +s (secret) channels to users not in those channels.

As a number of you rely on the bridge to act as an IRC bouncer, we understand the current situation is not sustainable in the long-term. We are in conversations with EMS to better define a long-term future for the bridge and the users who rely on it, as well as the wider Libera.Chat userbase.

As a reminder, there are two kinds of bridged channel:

Whilst we’re hoping for the most minimally disruptive outcome of these conversations, if a long-term ‘business as usual’ solution is not possible we may need to make some changes that will disrupt the function of the matrix<>IRC bridge. In the interest of giving you as much time possible to prepare, on July 30th 2023 we will be taking one of the following actions:

  1. Business as usual, no changes.
  2. We will ask EMS to disable portalled channels. This has the effect of making the bridge ‘opt-in’ from a Libera.Chat channel operator perspective.
  3. We will ask EMS to disable the bridge in its entirety. We do not intend to do this, but it is an option available to us.

We will endeavour to provide 28 days’ notice about the action we have chosen to take.

These changes will only affect the EMS-run general purpose bridge - that is, the one that appears as the libera.chat homeserver. Individuals and homeservers are of course welcome to facilitate their own access to IRC (although we ask you be mindful of our guidelines on the subject).

In the meantime, users should continue to report any issues with the bridge directly to EMS.

NB: A previous version of this post linked to the matrix.org contact page. EMS have now set up an issue tracker specifically for Libera.Chat bridge issues, and the link above has been updated to reflect this.

We’d really like to stress that EMS are working very hard to find a solution to the long-term sustainability of the bridge, and the work they’re doing is appreciated; the road ahead is not a trivial endeavour and we will continue to work closely with EMS to find a solution that is minimally disruptive to Libera.Chat users.

Cheers, Allie @ Libera.Chat