Things You Should Know When You're New To WinMX Chat

Ok, now you've hit the "Chat" button and a whole list of interesting rooms drops down. Find the one that interests you most, albeit help (or whatever takes your fancy), highlight it by clicking on it once and right click "Join Channel".

Another window will open. Down in the bottom right hand corner it should say "Float" and if you click on that to change it to "Dock" you can make that window smaller by grabbing and dragging in at any corner. This means you can join up to 7 other rooms at the same time, by making them smaller, drag them around your screen, and arranging them however suits you.

DON'T PANIC! Just be aware that by joining the channel, people can "Who is" and "Browse" your files. Also the Host and/or Moderators can probably see your IP number, which is the number allocated to you by your Internet Service Provider. They have these special powers for a reason, so that they can regulate the room. They will also have powers to kick or ban you.. so try to be polite and friendly. It's best to say "Hi" on entry. Don't forget people are seeing the same window as you and those that are watching will see you enter the room.

Close any particular chat window by using the "Exit Channel" button, bottom right hand corner, above the "Float/Dock" button.

These windows will have the name of the room along the top bar, with the relevant topic. The User list is on the right hand side. This is the list of people currently in that room (although bear in mind they may not necessarily be looking at their computers at that particular time!) You have no idea who is looking, or not; but these Users are "parked" in the room and you can right click on their names to "Who is" or "Browse" their files etc. Of course you can also "PM" them, which is private message.

Now to chat.. there's a bar along the bottom of the relevant room window which is blank. This is where you place your cursor and start typing! Experiment by typing a line like "Hello, good evening...OR.. I need help please" or whatever you would like to say. Don't worry because you can backspace and delete or edit. When you have typed what you wish to say, just hit "enter/return" on the keyboard and it will pop up in the chat area above. Voila! it's as easy as that. Your words will be seen by everyone who is looking at the time and hopefully someone will reply.

If they don't reply, it means no-one is looking at their screen at that particular time. Please don't make the mistake of thinking people are ignoring you! This is a common mistake. Most WinMX users who have taken the trouble to make a room, are more than helpful and obliging. Just be patient and wait. If no-one replies then possibly they are asleep or away. Consider the time difference as they may be on the other side of the world to you!

The Commands button is mainly for Administrative purposes but you will find a "backscroll" option which means you can control the amount of chat that you are able to see and scroll back to - in minutes, up to 1000. You can also add a "time stamp" which will add that particular format of time which you select, to each sentence in the chat box.

When there is a useful weblink or line of advice or information you wish to keep for the future, you can copy it to notepad to save for the future. Highlight any area in the chat box with the mouse (it usually changes colour), and press Ctrl + C (at the same time) to copy. To paste this in another area press Ctrl + V (at the same time). Just experiment with this until you get it. This is an excellent way of saving information and saves you dashing around looking for a pen and writing frantically! There is a scroll bar button on the right hand side of the chat area which you can use to scroll back up through the lines.

A word of caution - do NOT give any of your email addresses, telephone numbers or private information in general chat; some people might use this to your disadvantage. This is like posting the information in the local newspaper and you wouldn't do that would you? People are interested in where you are from, age and so on; this is entirely your choice but is certainly safe to give them a general idea about who they are talking to without specifics. When you get to know people better and build up a trust, you may wish to divulge more. But be absolutely confident before you do this. Don't forget that any information you give, or pictures you upload, can be bandied about the internet and anyone can find it.

Just a word about the NOT so nice people - DO NOT be intimated by anything anyone says to you. They cannot hurt you or do anything other than you can do to them! Ignore any threats or remarks if they seem rude or unkind. Don't forget this is live chat and some people can be ignorant and rude. Just ignore them. This is the beauty of chat; being ignored is often the best way to deal with them; they generally get bored and find other things to do! Most computers are equipped with a reasonable firewall which is designed to protect you from any malicious attack.  The majority of users that go around mouthing about attacking and hacking couldn't actually hack their way out of a wet bag.

You are simply talking to people, just like you, sitting by their computers.  Chat rooms are as tangible as if you were sitting in your local Cafe, and everyone is different. It's as much "real" as if you were talking to your neighbour over the garden fence. If someone sounds overbearing and pompous.. he probably is! Treat people as you find them. If they are polite to you (and most WinMX users are), respond accordingly.

Don't be afraid to speak your mind, and just be yourself. People will often help and guide you through any situation, whether it be technical or personal. Many of us have made very good friends and can re-visit the rooms just like you would visit your friend across town.

MOST of all - HAVE FUN! Many rooms run quizzes and such for entertainment. Join rooms which have topics that interest you. You may be invited to become a member! This is of course optional and something you may like to consider, but don't feel pressured. Just tell them you will think about it, thanking them for the offer :-)


Just a note to say that many rooms operate BOTS - these are automated programmes which are triggered by certain words you type: particularly when you enter a room. If you say "Hi" you will often get an automatic response from a well trained BOT! This is not a real person but trust me, we have all fallen into the trap of replying! Don't worry about it. You will become familiar with this within a few days and be able to tell who is who. We've all been there and got the T shirt with making an ass of ourselves in the early days. You will most certainly not be alone!

Essentially, we can tell if you are new but don't worry or stress.. people are often much kinder to you if they realise you are nervous and unsure, and will be patient and understanding. There's usually someone around with a sympathetic ear. This should give you the confidence to progress and learn. WinMX prides itself on the experience and understanding of it's long term users who can be supportive, helpful and teach you step by step.

I hope this has gone some way to introducing you to the world of WinMX Chat and that you join whenever you feel like a natter, or need some help. Remember, if you don't ask, you don't get! :-)

This information brought to you by Janz, Huge thanks to her for providing this for everyone.

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