GNOME moves away from GIMPnet on Nov 25 15:00 UTC

The GNOME community has become a Matrix-first community some time ago, and we kept the bridges to our historical IRC network GIMPnet as a convenience for people who were more comfortable using it. The GNOME community is going to move away from GIMPnet… which doesn’t mean we’re going to sever ties with IRC entirely.

To avoid all ambiguity, allow me to express my gratitude to the administrators of the GIMPnet network. Each one of them I could talk to was extremely nice and helping. GIMPnet has been a strong asset for a long time to keep the GNOME community together, and I want to sincerely thank them for keeping the network running for all these years.

Why moving away from GIMPnet?

The primary reason is that the Foundation is trying to do the best use of ops time. The more services we maintain, the more maintenance time they require. In addition to that, GIMPnet is not directely maintained by the Foundation ops. It is a cluster of nodes third parties run in low maintenance mode.

Every operation on GIMPnet takes a lot of chasing and coordination time, which makes it particularly draining to orchestrate for ops. Finally, GIMPnet’s software stack makes it difficult to integrate it with our primary communication platform: Matrix.

Are you ditching IRC?

We know some members of the contributing community deeply care about using IRC, since this has been their setup for a long time. Our primary communication platform is and remains Matrix, but that doesn’t mean we can’t bridge to IRC if it makes our community’s bonds stronger.

As a matter of fact, Libera Chat has some good quality of life features that make moderation on the IRC side easy to do, that doesn’t require Matrix users to cast odd NickServ spells, and that will even reduce the risk of split brain on the IRC side. We can even get cloaks for free there!

They also have a very active staff. Their volunteers are not only ready to help projects willing to migrate to their platform: they are also very actively developing their stack, deploying new features to improve the quality of life on the platform.

We firmly believe they’re good partners to work with, and that they can make the IRC experience better for those of us who wish to stay on IRC. Even better: assuming our encouraging tests materialise in healthy IRC channels where spam can be handled properly, we may encourage the Matrix rooms owners to bridge to Libera Chat as well.

What’s going to happen?

Thib and ops have reserved the GNOME namespace on Libera Chat. This means the #gnome and all channels starting with #gnome- can be claimed by the Foundation ops.

We are making a list of all the GNOME rooms in our GNOME Matrix space and creating their Libera Chat counterpart. On Libera Chat, all channels in the #gnome namespace will:

  • Require IRC users to be registered against NickServ. Matrix users will not have to register against NickServ. If you’re using Matrix: you don’t have anything to do.
  • Either be muted if the Matrix room owner doesn’t want it to be bridged, or be unmuted and bridged to the corresponding Matrix room

We will send a server notice to GIMPnet users to tell them GNOME channels are moving to Libera Chat, and that they now need to be registered against NickServ to join the channels.

Finally, by the time we do the switch, all the GNOME channels of GIMPnet will be muted, and the topic will be updated to ask people to join the Libera Chat channels

I’m a Matrix user, what do I need to do?

The migration will be completely transparent for you. You have nothing to do :tada:

I’m a GIMPnet user, what do I need to do?

We’re going to update the CNAME record to point to We need to respect the #gnome- namespace on Libera Chat, which means some channels may need to have a different alias as compared to what they are today on GIMPnet.

  • For the channels that have a same alias: migration will be transparent for you.
  • For the channels that need to change alias: you will have to join them manually.

Finally, when we update the CNAME record, your IRC client will think it’s talking to the same network. If you are registered against GIMPnet’s NickServ, it’s going to send your GIMPnet credentials to Libera Chat’s NickServ. If this is a security issue for you, we recommend you to disable automatic identification before the switch. If you’re primarily looking for a transparent upgrade, we recommend you to define the same credentials for your GIMPnet and Libera Chat nick.

We’re going to perform the switch on November 25 2022 15:00 UTC, please make sure you read these instructions and configured your client accordingly.

Matrix instance clean-up

The information below is only relevant to people with a Matrix account that ends with

Restricting the accounts to Foundation members only

As you may know, the GNOME Matrix instance used to be very open in its early days. Everyone could register a Matrix account with a address. We have closed registrations since, as we don’t wish to grant GNOME-branded accounts to people who are not members of the GNOME Foundation. Only people with a email address can register an account on our Matrix instance.

We are going to suspend the Matrix accounts of people who are not GNOME Foundation members. If you have good reasons to and want to keep your account, we recommend you to apply for membership in the GNOME Foundation. In any other case, we’re asking you to pick another provider for your Matrix account. Of course, if you move to another provider you will be able to join the public Matrix rooms you were in without an issue.

Connecting your GNOME account

Once the cleaning up is done, we’re going to connect our Matrix instance to our SSO so you can connect with your GNOME account. Consistency across services, at last! But for this to work, we need to link your account on the GNOME Matrix instance with your GNOME account. We are going to do matching based on the email address.

Please update your email address on the GNOME Matrix instance to match your email alias before November 30 2022 or you may lose access to your GNOME Matrix account.


For avoidance of doubt, we should configure the email address on our Matrix accounts to be, and not our LDAP email (the email address that our email aliases point to), yes?

I’m not sure what my email is or if I even have one (never needed it). Is there an instruction somewhere on how to access it?

You can only get a email alias if you are a member of the GNOME Foundation and you requested it.

This doesn’t seem to be correct. @averi just confirmed to me:

aliases are handed out automatically
as soon as you join the foundation you get a

Your alias is your LDAP login followed by In my case

All the mail going to your alias is routed to your primary mail address as defined in GitLab.

Yes, the email set on your matrix account should end with
In my case, I need to configure it to

Isn’t this the opportunity to drop the IRC bridge? I find it just degrades the experience for both sides.


Here are all the rooms in our GNOME Community Space.

  • GIMPnet alias is the current alias on GIMPnet
  • Libera Chat alias is the alias the channel would have on libera chat. We need to namespace our channels

If you are in charge of one of this rooms/channels and want to use this opportunity to unbridge, please let me know in this post before November 17.

Display Name Matrix Alias GIMPnet Alias Libera Chat alias Alias is the same
Accessibility #a11y #gnome-a11y FALSE
#boxes #boxes #gnome-boxes FALSE
GNOME Bugsquad :bug: #bugs #gnome-bugs FALSE
Clutter #clutter #gnome-clutter FALSE
GNOME Settings #control-center #gnome-control-center FALSE
Empathy #empathy #gnome-empathy FALSE
GNOME Engagement #engagement #gnome-engagement FALSE
#epiphany #epiphany #gnome-epiphany FALSE
Evince #evince #gnome-evince FALSE
GNOME Foundation #foundation FALSE
#gdm #gdm #gnome-gdm FALSE
Gitg #gitg #gnome-gitg FALSE
#glade #glade #gnome-glade FALSE
GNOME #gnome #gnome TRUE
GNOME Brasil #gnome-br #gnome-br TRUE
GNOME Builder #gnome-builder #gnome-builder TRUE
GNOME Calculator #gnome-calculator #gnome-calculator TRUE
GNOME Calendar #gnome-calendar #gnome-calendar TRUE
GNOME Contacts #gnome-contacts #gnome-contacts TRUE
GNOME Czech Republic #gnome-cz #gnome-cz TRUE
GNOME Germany #gnome-de #gnome-de TRUE
GNOME Design #gnome-design #gnome-design TRUE
GNOME Hispano #gnome-hispano #gnome-hispano TRUE
GNOME India #gnome-india #gnome-india TRUE
GNOME Italia #gnome-it #gnome-it TRUE
GNOME Maps #gnome-maps #gnome-maps TRUE
GNOME Music #gnome-music #gnome-music TRUE
GNOME Netherland #gnome-nl #gnome-nl TRUE
GNOME OS #gnome-os #gnome-os TRUE
GNOME Shell #gnome-shell #gnome-shell TRUE
GNOME Software #gnome-software #gnome-software TRUE
Endeavour #gnome-todo #gnome-todo TRUE
GNOME-FR #gnomefr #gnome-fr FALSE
Getting Things GNOME #gtg #gnome-gtg FALSE
GTK #gtk #gnome-gtk FALSE
GNOME Translation Editor #gtranslator #gnome-translator FALSE
GUADEC #guadec #gnome-guadec FALSE
GNOME Podcasts #hammond FALSE
GNOME i18n #i18n #gnome-i18n FALSE
GNOME JavaScript #javascript FALSE
Libadwaita #libadwaita #gnome-libadwaita FALSE
Mutter #mutter #gnome-mutter FALSE
Nautilus (Files) #nautilus #gnome-nautilus FALSE
GNOME Newcomers #newcomers #gnome-newcomers FALSE
Outreachy #outreachy #gnome-outreachy FALSE
Polari #polari #gnome-polari FALSE
GNOME Python #python #gnome-python FALSE
GNOME release-team #release-team #gnome-release-team FALSE
Rust :heart: GNOME FALSE
#rhythmbox #rhythmbox #gnome-rhythmbox FALSE
Seahorse #seahorse #gnome-seahorse FALSE
GNOME GSoC #soc #gnome-soc FALSE
GNOME sysadmin team #sysadmin #gnome-sysadmin FALSE
Tracker #tracker #gnome-tracker FALSE
GNOME Usage #usage #gnome-usage FALSE
#vala #vala #gnome-vala FALSE
#vte #vte #gnome-vte FALSE
Pika Backup
GNOME Clocks
Sound Recorder
GNOME Tweak Tool
Metadata Cleaner
Déjà Dup Backups
This Week in GNOME
GNOME Circle
GNOME App Dev Hangout

Please, drop this room entirely.

There’s a #gtk room on already; it would be nice if we could add a redirect from that to #gnome-gtk. We should keep the bridge as well.

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I don’t know who is officially in charge of that channel (if anyone), but the actual discussions about mutter development happen in #gnome-shell. That is, I don’t think it’s worth migrating to

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I’m not sure if it’s a good idea to move the channel to #gnome-gtk from a PR standpoint. There’s enough people on social media already hating on GTK as being in the pocket of the Gnome foundation, and renaming the channel to that would just give them more ammunition.

I’d like to avoid that.


Indeed. I think it would be useful to offer projects who already have a presence on Libera Chat the possibility to bridge their channel to the already existing one.

Very valid concern, which has been discussed with the Libera Chat staff already: gtk is going to keep existing on Libera Chat, and #gnome-gtk is going to redirect to it.

gtk is going to fall under the same Libera Chat project as GNOME (TLDR: I can claim the channel and perform moderation operations on it if needed) for the sake of simplicity, but I’m happy to hand it to anyone from the GTK gang if that’s something you’d like to handle yourselves instead.

Interesting, I’m not aware of any GNOME project that used to be on GIMPnet and that is already on Libera Chat. It would indeed make sense to keep the existing LC channels and bridge them to the Matrix room. Do you have specific projects in mind?

I am already in the #gtk channel on libera (been there since the freenode disaster), so I can manage it if you want.

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If anyone has problems finding out what their passwords are for the various networks they use, and their IRC client of choice is Polari, (un)fortunately those appear in clear text in the telepathy-logger logs, either in:

  • ~/.local/share/TpLogger/logs/idle_irc_* for system-wide telepathy installations, or
  • ~/.var/app/org.gnome.Polari/data/TpLogger/logs/idle_irc_* for Flatpak’ed installations

Thanks Florian for the info.

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Would it be possible to redirect #fedora-desktop on GIMPNet to #fedora-workstation on Libera Chat?

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Probably not automatically, but we can change the topic of the channel on gimpnet to ask users to go to said channel on Libera Chat. I’ll ask the Fedora community gang if they’re up for it

Before I forget: we should drop #newcomers from IRC as well. Newcomers join and leave, and assume that the channel is logged and/or previous messages are going to be visible. I’d rather have the room only on Matrix, to improve the chances of actually having a conversation.


We were under the impression that #fedora-desktop was already redirecting to #fedora-workstation. That change was approved several months ago. There should not be two separate channels anymore.