I also should've mentioned I've tried port forwarding; I even added my PC to the DMZ (complete firewall bypass) list, and that didn't help either.

I worked on it for a few more hours after my post, and eventually got fed up and just switched to the xChat WDK. I am not one to abandon a challenge, though, so I will continue to brainstorm it. It makes me sad to leave mIRC... I've been a registered user for almost a decade!! So, I'll be back. I might even send my new router back and get a different one. JUST FOR THIS REASON!!! laugh