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Codebot is an IRC bot that receives GitHub and GitLab webhooks and forwards them to IRC channels. It is designed to send messages in a format similar to that of the official GitHub IRC Service. Codebot is able to stay connected after sending messages. This eliminates the delays and visual clutter caused by reconnecting each time a new message has to be delivered.

In addition, Codebot is able to handle many events the official service does not support. Messages for these events are designed to be as consistent as possible with official messages. If these additional notifications are not desired, they can be disabled through the webhook settings.


  • Secure by default. Codebot automatically generates strong random secrets for each webhook to ensure the integrity of received data.
  • Highly configurable. Codebot supports IRC over TLS, SASL authentication, password-protected IRC servers, channel keys, address binding, and more.
  • Easy to set up. Setting up Codebot takes three minutes — no need to edit configuration files or memorize complicated commands.
  • Supports many events. Codebot supports all events supported by GitHub's official IRC integration, and a few more. Individual events can be enabled or disabled through the webhook settings.
  • Unlimited networks, channels and integrations. A single instance can receive notifications for any number of webhooks and forward them to the appropriate channels on as many IRC networks as you want.
  • On-the-fly reloading. A running Codebot instance can automatically pick up any new changes with no restart required. (Changes to channel lists currently still require a restart to take effect.)
  • Powered by Rack and Sinatra. Thanks to Rack, Codebot can work with almost any web server, including the default WEBrick server for smaller instances.


You can install Codebot from RubyGems by issuing the following command:

$ gem install codebot


Getting Codebot up and running only takes a few minutes.

Add a network

First, add the IRC networks you want to send notifications to. Remove --secure if you need to connect without TLS.

$ codebot network create freenode --host --nick bot --secure
  Network was successfully created
  Network: freenode
      Server: (secure connection)
      Nickname:   bot
      SASL authentication disabled

Please see codebot network help create for a list of possible options. Networks can be modified using codebot network update and deleted using the codebot network destroy command.

Add an integration

Next, create an integration. Integrations are responsible for mapping a webhook endpoint to a set of IRC channels. You can use the same endpoint for as many repositories and organizations as you wish.

$ codebot integration create my-project -c freenode/#chan1 freenode/#chan2
  Integration was successfully created
  Integration: my-project
      Endpoint: cc5dc492-1b6a-4e13-9da9-a9cc740add1d
      Secret:   WIcSmr6bsHmv9EmaONMQ1dViu5ziKYN3gUhXoyZBh3M=
          - #chan1 on freenode
          - #chan2 on freenode

You can specify a custom endpoint using the --endpoint option and a custom secret using the --secret option. If the secret is set to an empty string, the integrity of payloads will not be verified. This is highly discouraged.

Please see codebot integration help create for a list of possible options. Integrations can be modified using codebot integration update and deleted using the codebot integration destroy command.

Configure your webhook

You can now add a GitHub webhook to any repositories and organizations you'd like to receive notifications from.

Sample webhook configuration

Unless otherwise configured, Payload URL should be in the format http://server:4567/endpoint, where server is the IP address or host name of the server Codebot is running on, and endpoint the endpoint generated in the previous step. Please see Gateway Configuration for information on how to receive webhooks over HTTPS, and Environment Variables if you would like Codebot to listen on a different port.

Both possible Content type values are supported, but it is recommended to use application/json.

Secret should be set to the secret created in the previous step. This value is used for verifying the integrity of received payloads.

You may want to choose Let me select individual events if you do not wish to receive notifications for all supported events.

Start Codebot

After adding the webhook to your GitHub repository or organization, you can manage your Codebot instance using the following commands:

$ codebot core interactive # Starts Codebot in the foreground (interactively)
$ codebot core start       # Starts Codebot in the background (as a daemon)
$ codebot core stop        # Stops the active Codebot instance

For more information, please consult the following commands:

$ codebot help             # General help
$ codebot help network     # Commands for managing networks
$ codebot help integration # Commands for managing integrations
$ codebot help core        # Commands for managing active instances

The configuration is stored in ~/.codebot.yml, but it is not recommended to edit this file manually.

Environment Variables

Codebot supports the following environment variables:

  • CODEBOT_BIND sets the address for the web server to bind to. When running Codebot behind a local gateway server, this environment variable should be set to a loopback address like
  • CODEBOT_PORT sets the port for the web server to listen on. This defaults to 4567. If you need to listen on a privileged port, please set up a gateway server instead of trying to run Codebot as root.

Gateway Configuration

Codebot can optionally run behind a proxy, gateway server or load balancer. This allows for additional configuration that would otherwise not be possible, such as receiving webhooks over HTTPS.

When accessed through a gateway server, Codebot normally does not need to listen on all interfaces. It is therefore recommended to set the CODEBOT_BIND environment variable to a loopback address before starting Codebot:

$ export CODEBOT_BIND=''

For larger instances it is recommended to install thin before proceeding, as the standard WEBrick server is single-threaded by default.

$ gem install thin


lighttpd can be used as a gateway server using the mod_proxy module.

First, make sure that the mod_proxy module is loaded by adding the following line to your lighttpd.conf file:

server.modules += ( "mod_proxy" )

Next, configure the module to redirect incoming requests to Codebot:

# Forward requests for an entire domain or subdomain to Codebot
# Replace with the subdomain to redirect to Codebot
# If CODEBOT_BIND is set, replace with the address Codebot listens on
# If CODEBOT_PORT is set, replace 4567 with the port Codebot listens on
$HTTP["host"] == "" {
  proxy.server = ("/" => ( ( "host" => "", "port" => 4567 ) ) )

# Alternatively, forward requests for a subdirectory to Codebot
# Replace /codebot with the subdirectory to redirect to Codebot
# If CODEBOT_BIND is set, replace with the address Codebot listens on
# If CODEBOT_PORT is set, replace 4567 with the port Codebot listens on
proxy.header = ( "map-urlpath" => ( "/codebot" => "" ) )
proxy.server = ("/codebot" => ( ( "host" => "", "port" => 4567 ) ) )

That's it! You'll need to reload lighttpd for your changes to take effect.

If lighttpd has been configured correctly and Codebot is running, accessing the gateway with a browser should yield a Method not allowed error.


After checking out the repository, run bundle install to install dependencies. You can also run bin/console for an interactive prompt.

During development it is recommended to set the RACK_ENV environment variable to development. This causes the web server to listen only on the loopback interface by default.

To install this gem onto your local machine, run bundle exec rake install. To release a new version, update the version number in metadata.rb and run bundle exec rake release, which will create a git tag for the version, push git commits and tags, and push the .gem file to RubyGems.


Bug reports and pull requests are welcome on GitHub. Please see the for more information.