Once the largest IRC network, EFNet shares the claim with IRCNet of being the oldest IRC network.
EFNet and IRCNet both share a unique, decentralized philosophy, and continue to shun nickname and channel registration, and enforce a distinct separation between network and channel matters.
As there are no registration services,”ownership” of nicknames and channels are not guaranteed.
Channels fare a little better than nicknames, but not much, with a service called chanfix designed to promote channel stability without officially recognizing ownership.
We maintain a server list for EFNet. Another, semi-official server list is available from efnet.org http://www.efnet.org/?module=servers].
EFNet is a loose confederation of servers, with each server having it’s own policies and IRC operators.
New servers are voted on by regional routing bodies in each of 3 recognized geographical regions, US (US-EFNet), Canada (CA-EFNet), and Europe (EU-EFNet). Servers outside of one of the regions are considered part of the same region as their closest hub, according to network topography.
A handful of global policies have been adopted by a majority vote of all server admins, including the adoption of chanfix, and the adoption of glines.
EFNet servers must have robust connectivity to multiple backbones, due to a high potential for Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks.
Each region has it’s own guidelines and applications, applicants outside those regions apply to their closest hub.
Generally only applicants with prior EFNet admin/oper experience and/or stellar network connectivity are considered.