Those who are in familiar with older UNIXes, UNIX BSD derivatives and GNU Linux should certainly remember the times, when we hackers used to talk to each other using talk service.
Those who don't know what talk command is it is a simple console / ssh utility to talk to another logged in users.
Talk is very similar to write and mesg one liner messasing utilities available for *nixes, the difference is it is intendted to provide interactive chat between the two logged in users. People who came to know UNIX or free software in older times most likely don't know talk, however I still remember how precious this tool was for communication back in the day.
I believe still it can be useful so I dediced to install ot on one FreeBSD host.
In order to have the talk service running on BSD it is necessery to have /usr/libexec/ntalkd installed on the system this however is installed by default with standard BSD OS installs, so no need for any external ports install to run it.
talk doesn't have it's own init script to start is not written to run as it own service but in order to run it is is necessery to enable it via inetd
Enabling it is done by;;;
1 — Editting /etc/inetd.conf
Inside the conf the line::
#ntalk dgram udp wait tty:tty /usr/libexec/ntalkd ntalkd
should be uncommented e.g, become ;;;
ntalk dgram udp wait tty:tty /usr/libexec/ntalkd ntalkd
2 — Restart inetd
freebsd# /etc/rc.d/inetd restart
talk is planned to be used for peer to peer conversations over SSH so in a way it is the GRANDFATHER 🙂 of IRC, ICQ and Skype;;;
Here is an example on how talk is used ,, Let's say there are three logged in users
12:39PM up 3 days, 16:25, 3 users, load averages: 1.12, 0.91, 0.71
USER TTY FROM LOGIN@ IDLE WHAT
testuser p0 192.168.0.7 10:50AM - bash
hipo p3 192.168.0.8 12:23PM - w
root p4 :ttyp2:S.0 12:24PM - vim /usr/local/www/dat
I'm logged in with my username hipo and I would like to talk to testuser ;;;;
You see I'm logged in on /dev/ttyp3 (this is the specific naming on BSDs) on Linux equivalent is /dev/tty3So to talk the other user testuser;;;;;-
$ talk testuser ttyp0
[No connection yet]
[Waiting for your party to respond]
The testuser logged in via SSH will then get a message ||;
Message from Talk_Daemon@pcfreak at 12:44 on 2012/06/10 ...
talk: connection requested by hipo@localhost
talk: respond with: talk hipo@localhost
To enter a talk session then the logged in testuser has to type:
$ talk hipo@localhost