Rocket.Chat

Rocket.Chat is a web-based, persistent messaging service focusing on group communication. It is a simple and intuitive platform for all users with a GWDG account for their communication.

Rocket.Chat supports the exchange of files, images and videos as well as integration with other services like GitLab via bots and APIs. The service is available through a web browser without the need to install software but there are clients available for Windows macOS and Linux as well as apps for mobile devices.

The official documentation is available at https://rocket.chat/docs/.

How to use Rocket.Chat?

Requirements

  • A current web browser
  • Users who prefer to use clients will find the apps at https://rocket.chat/download for Windows, macOS and Linux as well as apps for mobile devices.

Login

  • Every user with a valid GWDG account can use the service. A valid e-mail address and password must be used for logging in.
  • Users from the “Universitätsmedizin Göttingen (UMG)” should use their @med.uni-goettingen.de e-mail address.
  • Users without an account can register at https://www.gwdg.de/registration.
  • DFN AAI members can login using Sigle-Sign on.

The service is available at https://chat.gwdg.de.

Introduction

The GWDG Nachrichten 04-05 2020 includes a detailed article to familiarize new users with rocket.chat's basic features (currently in german only).

What are the first steps?

To search for public channels or to exchange direct messages with other users first click on the “globe” icon on the upper left side. Afterwards you can search for channels. By switching the tab to “Users” you can search for rocket.chat users.

With their first login all users are added to the #general channel automatically. GWDG news and operating notifications will be posted there. The channel can be left later.

A new channel can be created by clicking on the small “pencial” icon next to the search box in the top left corner. The channel can be made private or ready-only. Alternatively one can join existing channels which are listed on the left side.

File uploads

Images, videos and files can be uploaded via a menu, available through the clip symbol next to the input box, or through drag and drop into the chat window. Images, GIFs and videos are embedded into the flow of text.

Uploaded files are automatically scanned for viruses by sophos.

How is my privacy protected?

All users signing in at https://chat.gwdg.de are searchable on the platform and can be sent direct messages or invited to channels. Users are identified by their userid, messages are marked with the user's first and last name. For sending emails the service also uses the user's email address.

Channels can be set to public or private. Private channels are only accessible for invited users and are not visible to others. Owners of a channel can remove members of a channel or delete the channel with its contents. Communication with the service is encrypted and the service is hosted in our data center.

FAQ

Q: I get the following error message when using invitation links: “Invalid or expired invite token”. What can I do?

A: The problem is known to the manufacturer and will be fixed in one of the next versions. It is usually sufficient if the invitee refreshes the page.

Q: Does chat.gwdg.de support End-to-end encryption (E2E)?

A: E2E is currently in beta. It sometimes does not work with mobile clients and therefore remains deactivated until a stable implementation is available. As an alternative OTR can be used.

Q: How can I connect my repository from gitlab.gwdg.de to rocket.chat, so that I will be notified on new issues?

A: A new “integration” must be created in gitlab: Click on “Settings” - “Integrations” and enter:

http://chat.gwdg.de:8080/gitlab/web?targets=mychan

“mychan” must be replaced accordingly. “Enable SSL verification” must be unchecked.

Then add the “ci-bot” account to the rocket.chat channel:

Q: I don't get notifications in the desktop client.

A: Verify the notification settings in the client as described here: https://github.com/RocketChat/Rocket.Chat.Electron/issues/1395#issuecomment-589752544

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