Looking for an alternative server to host your project's discussions and support forum following the disaster?

Why not look into a federated alternative like an MUC instead?

@lig my experience hosting was a walk in the park, up in about 5min. I hear nightmare stories about self-hosting Matrix, otoh.

@brandon if encryption isn't needed (which is the case for a MUC public chatroom), most clients are just fine, like the IRC ones.

@brandon no idea. XMPP is simple and has matured considerably in both client and server side

@kzimmermann I just looked up MUC and that sounds like IRC functionality is an "extension" of a client, as in a plugin. Is that right? I'm not sure if I understood that correctly

@brandon not sure? Maybe it is, since lotsa things in xmpp are extensions. But all my clients on phone, cli and desktop support it by default

I know that to host one the server must have the capability enabled, and perhaps even a subdomain to host the rooms. Prosody has it.

@kzimmermann @brandon I think the appeal of Matrix is the bridging to other services. That said, I've decided to set up an XMPP server just because I am too lazy to set up a matrix instance.

@kzimmermann I'll have to check Proody out. I haven't researching how to actually setting up my own server, so this is good to know.

@Mundon ejabberd scales better IIRC, but prosody was real easy to set up at home, especially after EFF's certbot came up to also easily add your TLS certificate. Definitely give it a try!

@brandon @kzimmermann
in XMPP rooms are centralized, so a single admin still has a lot of power about communications

Other reasons are encryption which is handled exceptionally well in Matrix, a monolithic specification rather than extensions, multi device handling, ...

@KitKat wait how is room ownership handled in Matrix? Several instances can "own" a chatroom? That would be a powerful, if pretty complex, feature.

And I frankly don't see any difference in usability between OMEMO encryption and Matrix's double-ratchet encryption. Though client *support* for encryption is indeed a larger issue for XMPP than it is for Matrix.


@kzimmermann @brandon

Ownership is shared between the Matrix servers that have people in the room (which soon (TM) will be even able to run on the devices of the users).

MEGOLM is a group native encryption alg, i.e. msgs are encrypted for the group instead of single sessions. This makes it possible to encrypt messages only once and easily gain synced history across devices by just sharing encryption keys with new ones. The same can happen with new group members (if sharing history is desired)

@kzimmermann @brandon

Additionally, you can verify people instead of their devices.
This means you can add and remove sessions however you like and use them right away - instead of having to meet with your contacts before adding the device (while still ensuring that the device is yours).

This all makes it very comfortable to communicate (securely).

@brandon @kzimmermann Matrix rooms work way better than shitty xmpp mucs imho

also matrix clients imolemented e2e the perfect way

@lnxw37a2 @brandon @kzimmermann I'm only using Element and Fluffychat and it seems to work well. cross-signing makes things work well.

@deavmi @lnxw37a2 @brandon @kzimmermann Are you using Synapse? I set up Dendrite recently, but it was super CPU and memory heavy. Seems to have stabilised a little now, but I still see spikes

@uoya @brandon @kzimmermann @lnxw37a2 I don't run one yet, but I do plan on running one (want to move away from as it's too big and I don't want to contribute to that centralisation)

@deavmi my experience with Matrix has been similar to @lnxw37a2 's, but maybe that's because I haven't re-visited it in quite a long time.

This might be some ok-boomer lore in internet time, but back then there was only one usable client (Riot) and few homeservers. It was incredibly bloated (1GB RAM for the client) and OLM E2EE was very flaky. I don't know how much Matrix has improved since then, but I hope it's better. Actually I should give it a new try, too.


@jookia right, like IRC has plenty more of them. Plus the quick solution of web-based KiwiIRC has an XMPP equivalent, ConverseJS

@kzimmermann I use both. But I prefer XMPP for the same reasons just explained before. The other reason I don't like Matrix at all is because it's company driven and I normally trust a lot of rest of companies good faith.

I thing community should give XMPP a try. I know since 2006 and I don't know why that amazing protocol has never been popular.

It's been popular for some time now, just under the hood... but most companies dropped down XMPP support


@jiefk @kzimmermann That's the problem with the permissive licenses. Many of those used XMPP but never give something back to the protocol. I remember now about Google Talk and Facebook.

@kzimmermann I still haven't figured out how XMPP would be better than Matrix for most users.

I've tried asking about it's bridging capabilities but they seem to be lacking.

I also haven't found a client comparison that would demo a XMPP client that is better than current Matrix clients.

"Better" is of course subjective but I haven't seen reason to switch yet.

XMPP is one of the good guys, the real enemy is centralized IM's.

@cos and I don't disagree with you! Matrix is indeed the more "complete" package and integration of features, but note how I said that xmpp is *simpler.*

To recreate the simple text-based support env we see on IRC, xmpp and Matrix are at the same level. But xmpp requires less resources to implement and the setup (for something like prosody for ex) is a cinch.

And for a client that is easy to use and as easy as the IRC kiwiirc webUI, have a look into Converse.js

Tried with colleges and there were multiple issues. Like some clients doing encryption and others not seeing all messages.

I still use one to one and that is ok.
cc: @bortzmeyer

@ttyS1 interesting. I once did an encrypted chat group (phones + desktops) with my family and actually worked pretty well. But eventually they dropped it back to whatsapp and the experiment ended.

But yeah, on average encrypted group chats are a little shaky on XMPP. Unencrypted MUCs, though, are pretty usable, and resemble IRC in usability.


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