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This page describes client and server setup for ZNC with LDAP authentication. If you're new to IRC, see How to IRC to get started. For more info on ZNC, see [1].

ZNC setup

These instructions show how to connect to the #csc channel on libera.chat via ZNC.

  1. Visit the ZNC web portal at znc.csclub.uwaterloo.ca and login using your CSC credentials.
  2. Go to "Your Settings". Under "Networks", if you do not see a network called "libera", then click "Add", type "libera" for the Network Name, edit your nickname if desired, and enter the following into the IRC servers table:
    Hostname            Port    SSL
    irc.libera.chat     6697    [Checked]
  3. (Optional, but recommended): Under the settings for libera, check the box which says "Connect to IRC & automatically re-connect". This will connect you to Libera as soon as you connect to ZNC.
  4. Set your nick, alt. nick, and ident for libera. Make sure these all have the same value. By default these are set to %user% which will expand to your csc username. If you are already logged in to libera with your csc username on a different IRC client, make sure to change your nick here as two different connections cannot share the same nick.
  5. Under the "channels" section for libera, click "Add", then enter #csc in the "Channel Name" field, and check the boxes "Save to config", "Detached", and "Enabled". Click "Add Channel and return".

Now you will connect to ZNC with an IRC client.

IRC Client setup

The Lounge (chat.csclub.uwaterloo.ca)

  1. Under network settings, name can be anything you want.
  2. Server should be set to znc.csclub.uwaterloo.ca, and port 6697. The password is <zncusername>:<zncpassword>. If you have multiple networks configured, i.e. Libera and Freenode, use <zncusername>/<networkname>:<zncpassword> for the password. Also set your nick, username and real name.
  3. Under Authentication, choose Username + password (SASL PLAIN), and enter your LIBERA nick and password.


    /server add myznc znc.csclub.uwaterloo.ca/6697 -username=<CSC_USERNAME>/libera -password=<CSC_PASSWORD> -ssl -autoconnect
    /connect myznc
    /join #csc

    Don't forget to concatenate "/libera" to the end of your username.

  1. If you did not check the autoconnect box, you will need to manually connect using:
    /msg *status connect

    To verify that you are connected to Libera, run

    /msg *status ListNetworks

    The "IRC" column should have the value "Yes".

  2. A modified version of the backlog module [2] is enabled globally. To use this, first enable the log module for your user via the web UI. You will then be able to request older logs for a channel from your IRC client, e.g.
    /msg *backlog #csc 42

    Note that you do not need to specify the log path.

Server setup

Note that the following instructions are about setting up a ZNC instance with support for LDAP authentication, similar to the CSC ZNC, and it is not about configuring an IRC client to connect to ZNC. For that, see the Client setup section above.

saslauthd setup

For LDAP authentication, we use the Cyrusauth module [3], which needs to communicate with the SASL authentication daemon (saslauthd).

  1. On the server, install the following packages:
    apt install sasl2-bin ca-certificates
  2. Open /etc/default/saslauthd, and change the following lines:
  3. Paste the following into /etc/saslauthd.conf:
    ldap_servers: ldaps://auth1.csclub.uwaterloo.ca ldaps://auth2.csclub.uwaterloo.ca
    ldap_search_base: ou=People,dc=csclub,dc=uwaterloo,dc=ca
    ldap_filter: (uid=%u)
  4. Start saslauthd:
    # service saslauthd start
  5. Test saslauthd to make sure it's working:
    $ testsaslauthd -u "your_csc_username" -p "your_csc_password"

    You should see a response like

    0: OK "Success."

ZNC setup

  1. Install ZNC:
    # apt install znc
  2. Add a user for ZNC and create an initial configuration:
    # useradd -s /bin/bash -m znc
    # usermod -a -G sasl znc
    # su - znc
    $ znc --makeconf

    Note that the znc user must be part of the sasl group to communicate with saslauthd.

  3. Visit the web interface at <SERVER_IP>:<PORT>. Note that you may need to modify your browser settings so that you can visit a website at port 6667 or 6697.
  4. Log in using your admin credentials, then go to "Global Settings". Check the "cyrusauth" box, type "saslauthd" in the arguments input field, then scroll to the bottom and click "Save".
  5. You will now need to connect to ZNC with an IRC client. The commands below assume Weechat is being used, but other clients should be similar.
    /server add myznc <SERVER_IP>/<PORT> -username=<ADMIN_USERNAME> -password=<ADMIN_PASSWORD>
    /connect myznc
    /msg *Cyrusauth CreateUsers yes

    This will tell ZNC to create a new user on their first login.

  6. You may optionally wish to create users from a template (i.e. dummy) user to share some common per-user settings, such as MaxNetworks. To do this, login to the ZNC web interface as admin and click on "Manage Users". Add a new user called "dummy" with the desired settings, then click "save". Now open Weechat, login to ZNC as admin, and run the following:
    /msg *Cyrusauth CreateUsers clone dummy

    This will tell ZNC to clone new users using "dummy" as the template.

  7. You may wish to optionally enable the adminlog module [4] so that you can see who has logged in from where at what time. By default, these logs will be written to a file. To prevent this file from growing too long, install logrotate and paste the following into /etc/logrotate.d/znc:
    /home/znc/.znc/moddata/adminlog/znc.log {
            rotate 4

    This will keep rotate logs every week, discarding logs after they have been rotated 4 times.

NGINX tuning

If you are running ZNC behind NGINX as a reverse proxy, keep in mind that by default, NGINX will run one worker process per CPU core. To reduce this, change the following in /etc/nginx/nginx.conf:

worker_processes 4