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Gopher Wiki

Gopher is a pre-web internet protocol based on a hierarchy of menus and documents. See below for useful links and clients for Gopher.

To get started with Gopher on the town, make a public_gopher directory in your home and it will be listed on the main menu of gopher://tilde.town. You can start immediately by putting various files and directories in your public_gopher, and they will be displayed on Gopher. In addition, you can create a file named gophermap to add information, links, and labels for files.

gophermap format

gophermap contains tab-separated data, for example

0My text file   file1.txt
1My dir funfiles

The first line contains two columns: 0My text file and file1.txt. The second column points to a (local) file, while the first column contains the description that will appear in the menu ("My text file"), as well as the item type (0, stands for text files). You can find the list of item types and their associated codes in the table below.

The second line contains a link to a subdirectory funfiles with the description My dir. The item type in this case is 1, which stands for a directory or a Gopher submenu. You also use the same item type for providing links to Gopher menus on other servers:

1The official frogs.tips gopher hole    /   gopher.frogs.tips   70

This entry contains three more columns: the item selector (aka, the path on the server), the host name of the server, and the desired port (which defaults to 70 for Gopher). Using the same scheme you can link to text files and other kinds of items on different servers.

The item type "i" enables inline text in your gophermap:

iThis text will be displayed as is. This will not be rendered as a link.

See this tutorial on gophermap written by 'cat'. Also available on gopher: gopher://baud.baby/0/phlog/fs20181102.txt.

Item types

0     Text file
1     Directory/Gopher submenu
2     CSO name server
3     Error
4     Mac HQX filer
5     PC binary
6     UNIX uuencoded file
7     Search server
8     Telnet Session
9     Binary File
g     GIF image
h     HTML, Hypertext Markup Language (useful for the WWW URLs)
i     "inline" text type
s     Sound
I     Image (other than GIF)
M     MIME multipart/mixed message


Gopher can be accessed directly from your tilde.town shell with some text-based web browsers, like lynx or w3m, by specifying the desired protocol.

Example: lynx gopher://tilde.town

There is a variety of gopher clients around, and it's even possible to browse gopher directly with telnet/netcat. Some popular clients are:

References and external links

2007 Gopherspace Mirror

A video on Gopher

SDF Gophermap Guide

SDF Gophermap Guide Archive

last compiled: 2021-06-04 12:34:03.178788