Sugar Labs


You can configure your workspace’s Gateways in Admin Settings.

Saying goodbye to Slack’s IRC and XMPP gateways

As Slack has evolved over the years, we’ve built features and capabilities — like Shared Channels, Threads, and emoji reactions (to name a few) — that the IRC and XMPP gateways aren’t able to handle. Our priority is to provide a secure and high-quality experience across all platforms, and so the time has come to close the gateways.

We know this may affect your workflow in ways that are frustrating or disruptive, and we’re here to help and answer questions. Thank you in advance for making this transition with us.

Please note that the gateways will be closed according to the following schedule:

  • March 6, 2018: No longer available to newly-created workspaces
  • April 3, 2018: Removed from workspaces where they’re not in use
  • May 15, 2018: Closed for all remaining workspaces

If your workspace currently uses gateways, your experience won’t change until May 15th. But we encourage you to prepare for the transition soon. Feel free to contact our support team for help.

Accessibility & screen reading

We are focused on making Slack accessible to all people. Over the past year, we've made great progress in improving both the keyboard and screen reading experiences in Slack. We know many users have been relying on IRC and XMPP clients for a more accessible experience — but our goal is to build all of the accessibility features you need directly into Slack.

Navigating Slack by keyboard: In addition to Slack’s keyboard shortcuts and basic keyboard accessibility, you can now work in Slack using our new, more efficient navigation model.

Using a screen reader in Slack: We’ve also been improving the screen reader experience. Here’s what you’ll find:

  • All UI elements are accessible by keyboard and functional with a screen reader
  • We’ve improved our UI labeling & naming, including ARIA landmarks
  • Interactions like the message input autocomplete have also been enhanced with ARIA
  • We’ve improved the virtual and focus navigation experience for reading messages
  • Message content, states (e.g. stars, pins, etc.) and actions (e.g. reply, react) are fully perceivable

These changes are just the beginning of our accessibility journey. We’ll be releasing further improvements in the near future!

Creative uses of gateways

Although the gateways were never supported as a developer feature, many of you have built useful and creative integrations that rely on them. We recognize removing these gateways may disrupt your work, but we’re hopeful that our Real Time Messaging and Events APIs will meet the majority of your integration & bot needs.

Many other creative uses of gateways are now supported with full-fledged features right in Slack, like setting per-channel notifications, searching logs, sending email straight to Slack, and more. A quick search in our Help Center is an easy way to see if Slack’s capabilities now cover your use case, or you can reach out to our support team.


XMPP and IRC Client Support