Screen Shots for IceChat, Old versions and New. Click on images for Larger size pictures.
Read for a little History on IceChat. Click here for Screen Shots for IceChat 7.
Below is a screen shot of the very first version of IceChat, back when it was called sIRC. So you could call this sIRC v1.0. It was my first attempt at making an IRC Client, and was extremely limited, but it did work. This dates back to July 2000. This screen shot was taken, joining the IceChat support channel today, as this version still exists, and still works. IceChat did not exist back when this was originally created though.
After sIRC was tried out, I thought I would get a bit more serious with making an IRC Client, and started from scratch again. This time I decided to call it VClient. You can see from this version, that the original concepts of my vision of what IceChat would become, were born here. The Favorite Server List, the single Nicklist, the Console, and the single inputbox. Multiple server connections were fully capable in this version, but with multiple Console”s. It was a very crude design and layout.
This version had some window skinning attempts, version 1.069 released early July 2001.
This version dates back to early August 8 2001, v1.0805.
After a few versions of VClient, v1.20 came out. It was already quite a step ahead of version 1.0805 in that the nicklist was simplified, and the Console was renamed the Status for “only” this version. I made the ability of making the Server List and Nicklist to be moved around and placed anywhere, and a background picture added to the Main background. A lot more options were added, and this version was very usuable. This was the last version of VClient that was released, at the end of August 2001.
IceChat was born. Version 2 came out and a lot had changed. The Console was back, but now with tabs for the multiple server connections. Channels would now have the full colors supported. The inputbox was now fixed to the bottom of the Main Screen, and the Server List and Nicklist were docked to the side. This is version 2.11, that last of the Version 2.x clients, and was still very crude, but worked. Version 3 would change it all. This version dates back to October 2001.
IceChat was released to the Public as version 3.0 in April 2002, on CNET”s web site, www.download.com. It was a huge step ahead of Version 2, and was now a lot more user friendly. Many versions of 3.0 came out, and with Version 3.3, emoticons where now supported for the 1st time. The last version of Version 3 was version 3.76, pictured below. This was by far the most stable and usuable version of IceChat to date. Version 3.76 was released near the end of December 2002.
Screen shot of v3.75 , showing its new skinning style.
Screen Shot of v3.76.
Version 4 was now in the works. It provided me with a big challenge with IceChat. What Next? I had big ideas, and I wanted the client to become fully skinned, using Windows Blinds skins. Below is a screen shot of the very first Beta version of IceChat 4. You can see how bizarre it looked. Eventually the full skinning support was dropped before the full release of Version 4, to a much more mild version of it. IceChat 4 introduced scripting to IceChat, even it was in its very crude first stages. IceChat 4 was released around January 2003.
I wanted Version 5 to step in a whole new direction for IceChat. So a new developer came on board to help me out, IRBMe. Together, we re-wrote IceChat from scratch, as version 4.13, the last stable version of IceChat 4, was getting a little bit problematic. IceChat 5 was again miles agead of IceChat 4, in its design and interface. The script engine was completely re-done, and was now working a lot better. Below are some screen shots of the first Public release of IceChat 5.0, October 2003.
IceChat 5 was finally a version I was happy with. Along with IRBMe”s help, it became a much improved program from all previous versions, had a much larger amount of options, and ran very well. Many fixes and versions came out, and the latest version, 5.50, was released January 2005. IceChat 5 has remained the longest staying version of them all. But it did not remain the last version.
In May 2004, IceChat 6 was already in the works. It was again, a completely new re-write. But this time, it was not made in Visual Basic 6, but in C#, the .Net Language. It was also made to be Open Source, meaning anyone could get the source code to the client. It was an entirely new direction for IceChat, but it was not long lived. After about 7 months of working on IceChat 6, I stopped development of it. Below is a screen shot of IceChat 6 Alpha .0040G, the last Alpha version of IceChat 6 released. The Source code is still available for anyone that wished to look at it at http://sourceforge.net.
During the development of IceChat 6, patches were still being put out for IceChat 5, the last update being in January 2005, with version 5.50. I then thought long and hard what I wanted to do with the project. Was I going to stop developing it completely, just maintain version 5 with any new patches it may have needed, or start on Version 7? In March 2005 I finally decided to start work on IceChat 7. It would be based on IceChat 5, but nearly a complete re-design of the User Interface. I wanted to remove the old skins, and make it more theme based, and just clean up the interface to make it a lot less cluttered and easier on the eyes, and easier for people to use the program. A lot of thought had been put into it, and in June 2005 the first Alpha version of IceChat 7 was made available to the public. IceChat 7 would not be open source, as it was not based on Version 6 at all, but did take a lot of the design concepts from it.
Version 7 is finally becoming the client that I visioned IceChat would be 5 years ago. It will have mirc style scripting, along with VB Scripting, Multi-Language support, and a very easy to use, and un-cluttered User Interface. But the same basic layout, started out with VClient 1.x back in July 2001 are still in its core design, of a Favorite Server List, a single Nicklist, and single input box.
The Full Release of IceChat 7 came on September 30, 2006. The latest build, v7.80, was released December 13, 2014, with Windows 8 support. It is no longer being worked on, as development now is being focused on IceChat 9. IceChat 8 was started on the IceChat 7 codebase, but development was stopped, in favor of IceChat 9.
IceChat 8 started with some basic development, but was dropped, and was merely for testing purposes.
IceChat 9 (previously called IceChat 2009) is the latest version to be worked on. It was started in January of 2009, with a brand new code base. It is being developed in C# 2008 using the .Net 3.5 platform, to maintain its compatibility with the Mono Framework. This will make IceChat 9 cross-platform friendly. It is open source, and available at CodePlex.com. Development has been going a bit slow, but it is making progress. Everything is being re-written, but a small amount of code from IceChat 6 is being used, as it had some good ideas and implementation. This is now the 3rd attempt at re-writing the client with C#, and making it open source. IceChat 6 did almost get to the Beta stage, we truly hope to get IceChat 9 past this stage. IceChat 6 had some bad problems with it, that have already been addressed with IceChat 9, so this is already an improvement. The GUI change to IceChat 9, is with a tabbed interface. Individual windows can no longer be resized, as they are all tabs now. But the tabs can be dragged around/re-arranged in any order you wish.
Final note about IceChat 9 is, for the latest release in the works (as of October 2013, RC8) we are working on the ability to allow a tabbed interface, AND allow Individual windows again.
Ask in the forums or in the #icechat support channel about anymore information on IceChat and its releases.
IceChat 9 Changelog — A list of all the latest changes to IceChat 9
IceChat 7 Changelog — A list of all the updates for the IceChat 7 life cycle
IceChat 5 Changelog — The IceChat 5 life cycle
IceChat 4 and 3 Changelog — The IceChat 4 and 3 life cycle