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Message tags

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Message tags communicate additional details in an IRC protocol message, such as the services account a user is using. End-users typically do NOT see the actual raw message tags in their client, but their IRC client can use them to display additional useful information (eg: registered account status, history playback, etc) or make better decisions (eg: if the user is trusted, should be auto-banned, etc).

Technical information

A JOIN looks like this in regular IRC protocol:
:nick!~user@localhost JOIN #test
If a client has enabled message tags and other capabilities it may look like this instead:
@time=2019-12-31T18:30:50.123Z;msgid=tjtArKOTqfcdY0FmaUGaHI;account=SomeAccount :nick!~user@localhost JOIN #test

Clients need to indicate support for receiving message tags, either by a specific CAP (such as CAP REQ account-tag) or by indicating support in general for message tags (CAP REQ message-tags).

The general rules on message tags parsing are described in https://ircv3.net/specs/extensions/message-tags.html

Supported message tags

UnrealIRCd supports the following message tags:

Tag name (specification) Module (source) Requirements Description and example
account account-tag CAP REQ account-tag Shows the account name of users who identified to Services.

@account=someone :nick!~user@host PRIVMSG #test :hi!

batch batch CAP REQ batch Allows grouping of multiple protocol messages into a batch. Used by labeled-response, history playback, etc.
bot bot-tag CAP REQ message-tags The bot tag is attached to messages/events from users that have user mode +B (users that are identified as bots).
label labeled-response CAP REQ label Allows IRC clients to easily correlate requests and responses

@label=zzzz :irc1.test.net ISON somenick
Note: uses BATCH for multi-line responses

unrealircd.org/json-log json-log CAP REQ unrealircd.org/json-log

+IRCOp privileges

In server notices you see the underlying JSON data. See JSON logging.
msgid message-ids CAP REQ message-tags Attaches an unique (network-wide) message id to messages.

@msgid=tjtArKOTqfcdY0FmaUGaHI :nick!~user@localhost PRIVMSG #test :hello everyone

time server-time CAP REQ server-time Attaches a label with the server date and time on which the message was sent.

@time=2019-12-31T18:30:50.123Z :nick!~user@localhost JOIN #test

unrealircd.org/userhost userhost-tag CAP REQ message-tags

+IRCOp privileges

The real uncloaked user@host - shown to IRC Operators only.

@unrealircd.org/[email protected] :[email protected] JOIN #test

unrealircd.org/userip userip-tag CAP REQ message-tags

+IRCOp privileges

The real user@ip - shown to IRC Operators only.

@unrealircd.org/[email protected] :[email protected] JOIN #test

unrealircd.org/geoip geoip-tag CAP REQ message-tags

+IRCOp privileges

The country code - shown to IRC Operators only.

@unrealircd.org/geoip=NL :[email protected] JOIN #test

+typing typing-indicator CAP REQ message-tags Client tag to show that the user is typing a message. Supported by f.e. IRCCloud and KiwiIRC nextclient.

@+typing=active TAGMSG #main

+draft/reply reply-tag CAP REQ message-tags This tag shows to which message a user is replying to. Often used by bots to refer to the !trigger.

@+draft/reply=msgid PRIVMSG #main :good idea


Changes between UnrealIRCd versions (in chronological order):

  • label: In UnrealIRCd 5.0.0, 5.0.1 and 5.0.2 the tag was draft/label, and the capability was draft/labeled-response. This because the specification was still in draft at that time. Starting with UnrealIRCd 5.0.3 the draft/ prefix was dropped.
  • unrealircd.org/userhost: added in UnrealIRCd 5.0.3
  • unrealircd.org/userip: added in UnrealIRCd 5.0.3
  • +typing: added in UnrealIRCd 5.0.5
  • draft/bot: added in UnrealIRCd 5.2.0
  • +draft/reply: added in UnrealIRCd 5.2.0
  • unrealircd.org/json-log: added in UnrealIRCd 6.0.0
  • unrealircd.org/geoip: added in UnrealIRCd 6.0.4
  • bot: added in UnrealIRCd (in addition to existing draft/bot, which will be removed at a later point)

Support for other message tags

In UnrealIRCd every message tag, including client message tags, need to have a message tag handler, usually added via a module. See FAQ: How can I allow other message tags?.