Common patterns and formatting

Some plugins can be configured, and some of them can use patterns to substitute variables.


The syntax is ?{} where ? is replaced by one of the token defined below. Braces are mandatory and cannot be ommited. To write a literal template construct, prepend the token twice.

Availables templates

The following templates are available:

  • %, date and time (see Time),
  • #{name}, name will be substituted from the keywords (see Keywords),
  • ${name}, name will be substituted from the environment variable (see Environment variables),
  • @{attributes}, the attributes will be substituted to IRC colors (see Attributes),


When you can use patterns, the date and time may be used just like strftime(3) so for the hours and minutes, you can use %H:%M.

Environment variables

If supported, you can use environment variables like ${HOME}. Please note that braces are mandatory.


The attribute format is composed of three parts, foreground, background and modifiers, each separated by a comma.

Available colors

  • white,
  • black,
  • blue,
  • green,
  • red,
  • brown,
  • purple,
  • orange,
  • yellow,
  • lightgreen,
  • cyan,
  • lightcyan,
  • lightblue,
  • pink,
  • grey,
  • lightgrey.

Available attributes

  • bold,
  • italic,
  • strike,
  • reset,
  • underline,
  • underline2,
  • reverse.


Keywords are arbitrary names that are replaced depending on the context. They are usually available to configure plugins.

Predefined keywords

Here's the list of keywords that a lot of plugins uses:

  • #{channel}, the channel name,
  • #{command}, the command to invoke the plugin, e.g. !ask,
  • #{message}, a message (depending on context),
  • #{origin}, the full user, e.g. markand!~mkd@localhost,
  • #{nickname}, the short nickname,
  • #{plugin}, the plugin name,
  • #{server}, the current server name,
  • #{topic}, the topic,
  • #{target}, a target, e.g. a person who gets kicked.


Valid constructs

  • #{target}, welcome: if target is set to "irccd", becomes "irccd, welcome",
  • @{red}#{target}: if target is specified, it is written in red.

Invalid or literals constructs

  • ##{target}: will output "#{target}",
  • ##: will output "##",
  • #target: will output "#target",
  • #{target: will throw an error.

Colors & attributes

  • @{red,blue}: will write text red on blue background,
  • @{default,yellow}: will write default color text on yellow background,
  • @{white,black,bold,underline}: will write white text on black in both bold and underline.

In the logger plugin

For instance, using the logger plugin, it's possible to customize the pattern to use when someone joins a channel like that:

#{origin} joined #{channel}

The keyword #{origin} will be substituted to the nickname and #{channel} to the channel name.