When comparing mIRC vs XChat, the Slant community recommends mIRC for most people. In the question“What are the best IRC clients for Windows?” mIRC is ranked 4th while XChat is ranked 8th. The most important reason people chose mIRC is:
Scripts are short programs (sets of instructions) that can be used to automate tasks in mIRC. mIRC has its own scripting language which can be used to perform many different types of tasks, from managing IRC channels to playing multi-user online games. mIRC scripts can also be used to perform tasks that are not IRC-related, such as managing files on the computer, sending emails, or backing up a web server. The scripting language is being improved upon and developed further with each release of mIRC.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Highly scriptable with an ever-evolving scripting language
Scripts are short programs (sets of instructions) that can be used to automate tasks in mIRC. mIRC has its own scripting language which can be used to perform many different types of tasks, from managing IRC channels to playing multi-user online games.
mIRC scripts can also be used to perform tasks that are not IRC-related, such as managing files on the computer, sending emails, or backing up a web server.
The scripting language is being improved upon and developed further with each release of mIRC.
Pro Clean interface
mIRC interface is uncluttered, easy to overview and use. Additionally, it is highly customizable where fonts, layouts, aliases, popups, etc can be changed and extendable so it can be made to fit any necessities.
Pro Functionality can be extended with a vast array of scripts
A vast array of scripts are available on the web.
Pro Free trial
mIRC offers a free 30-day trial.
Pro Crackable if you NOP CRC
Very easy to crack if you know basic Reverse Engineering.
Pro Has been in active development for over 20 years
mIRC was created in 1995 by Khaled Mardam-Bey and is still being actively developed.
Pro Per-server settings
It's possible to create a list of settings and action that perform when connecting to a specific server. All of these things are easy to set up and use.
Pro Almost all actions can be performed via buttons
mIRC offers easy to use graphical solutions for a wide range of different IRC commands and server configurations so it's possible to use either commands or icons based on preference.
Pro Highly customizable look
While most clients allow changing the theme or style of a window, XChat gives complete control over what it looks like. It's possible to set a custom image as the background, changing font, or syntax colors.
Pro Excellent Plugin Library
XChat has a great list of plugins and scripts. Most quality IRC clients support plugins but XChats library is incredibly extensive. There is a wide range of both useful and fun plugins. It's possible to add an RSS feed or play a game of chess. Or maybe you want to control an mp3 player via chat while translating everything you type to l33t speek. XChats Plugin Library is truly extensive.
Pro Works for any level of user
XChat is an advanced IRC client that is good for beginners as well as those users who like to get under the hood. It is easy to get up and running, but has all the advanced features that a power user would need.
Pro Great interface
XChat's default interface is clear, well-organized and intuitive. Channels can be laid out as both tabs and in a tree structure. All components such as user lists, topics bar or even menu bar can be hidden to provide a clean way to interact. Conversely the interface can be configured to show quick access buttons for changing channel flags, sending files or performing operator actions.
Con Not free
mIRC is not free but only a trial for 30 days, after that the user is asked to pay $20 to be able to use the software.
Con No command line solution
Con Vague information on validity of purchased licenses
Developer only says a license is valid for "several years" and is known to have intentionally voided licenses that were specifically described as lifetime licenses for repeat business.
Con Development stopped
The latest release of XChat was in 2010. An active fork is HexChat.