Connecting with SASL

SASL is a method that allows identification to services (NickServ) as the first step in connecting to the network, before anything else happens. To use SASL, one must register with services. To connect to freenode using Tor, SASL is required.

Some users may see this message when trying to connect: *** Notice -- You need to identify via SASL to use this server When there are repeated problems with abuse or anti-social behavior from an IP range, and the users on that IP range seem to have the ability to rapidly change between many different IPs, freenode is left with the uncomfortable choices of completely blocking access to the entire range, doing nothing, or turning to SASL. If nothing is done, many large channels may end up blocking entire ISPs and countries, perhaps for an extended time. SASL allows freenode to avoid a complete block while still mitigating potential abuse.

Client support for SASL relies on the CAP IRC client extension; the technical details of how it works are explained here. A number of clients already have built-in support for SASL:

This list may not be completely up-to-date, so check your client's latest documentation.

Other popular clients have implemented SASL through user-downloadable plug-ins or scripts:

And possibly others we have not listed here.

SASL Client Configuration

We have instructions on how to configure SASL for some clients, below. If asked to choose an authentication mechanism, be aware that freenode does not support DH-BLOWFISH or EXTERNAL.

If you know of any additions or corrections to the lists above, or would like to contribute a script or (better) documentation, contact us at the email below.

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