What is ...Usenet?

Posted by: RubenC

What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 12:04 PM

OK, I give up, what is this usenet I've heard mention here and around the office. And how does it differ from what I know as the internet? Some sites want a monthly fee (for what I don't know) , others say it's free, others claim my own ISP has it, I've yet to find it. Is it illegal or legit? I'm not sure, I am curious and confused. <br><br>
Posted by: Michael

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 12:32 PM

Check this out. I should also add most ISPs are no longer including Usenet access for free anymore.<br><br> Meek and obedient you follow the leader down well trodden corridors into the valley of steel
Posted by:

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 12:48 PM

Panic does a nice job of describing it. Scroll down a bit.<br><br>My definition: just about any binary file and discussion topic you could possiblly ever want. Movies, music, apps, OSes, pron, etc. All at server speeds... none of that P2P 21k/sec. crap. Unfortunately, it's not like a P2P app where you search and go get what you want. It sort of requires a commitment to regularly check to groups you're subscribed to in order to see what's been posted. It's daunting for new users cos they see rows and rows of message headers and can't make sense out of it. Plus, binaries get split into segments and have to be rejoined, and that frightens newbies. Panic's app, Unison, does a very nice job of making it more attractive...you can even preview music right off the server.<br><br>Some ISPs offer Usenet access of some sort. But it's usually very limited in some way... like 2GB/month downloads (Comcast does this) or very short message retention—or incomplete listing of groups. I subscribe to Giganews and get full access to Usenet with unlimited downloads and 10 connections for $24.99 a month. Since upgrading to the unlimited plan about two weeks ago, I've downloaded near 25GB of ridiculous fun. It's insane.<br><br>As long as people find Usenet cryptic, it'll remain an undergoround and leave the rest of us in the know with a nice little playground. <br><br>
Posted by: Pete

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 01:05 PM

Some ISPs offer Usenet access of some sort. But it's usually very limited in some way... like 2GB/month downloads (Comcast does this) or very short message retention—or incomplete listing of groups<br><br>Yeah, that's me - I was attempting to download a series of about 15 binaries and found that I was only able to download about 1 or 2 concurrent files. Not sure if the $24.99 a month is worth it, but I'm sure you can justify it by not paying for all those movie tickets. <br><br>
Posted by:

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 01:13 PM

They have $12.99 for 25GB/month. You can have them cut you off at your limit, or reset your billing cycle when you go over. I used to have that, but now I can just download without concern for my limit. Working on getting every Three Stooges short ever made (well, mostly just the Curly ones and a couple Shemps).<br><br>
Posted by: Pete

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 01:27 PM

What, no love for Curly Joe?<br><br>
Posted by: RubenC

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 01:34 PM

Thanks Michael, I'm still trying to grasp this methodology with usenet. So I'm assuming the GB limit is based on downloads I would be making on news, music, movies, games, etc.<br><br>
Posted by: RubenC

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 01:36 PM

Thanks Sam, that Unison from Panic looks friendly enough. I've been using Transmit for a while now, but never really thought to see what else Panic had to offer.<br><br>
Posted by: Michael

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 01:39 PM

Yeah with Easynews you get 20 Gigs/month to download for $9.95. If you don't use the 20 in a month it carries over. And with them if you download through the web you get 20 gigs, but if you use a reader like Thoth or MT Newswatcher you get 30 gigs/month. Most binaries are posted in RAR format and have to be recombined after downloading using a util like UnRAR X or Mac PAR.<br><br> Meek and obedient you follow the leader down well trodden corridors into the valley of steel
Posted by: RubenC

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 01:41 PM

Can you access usenet when at work? Or do company firewalls come into play. Just reading about this binary stuff is giving me headaches. Although when you mentioned getting the Three Stooges collection, that was very enticing to me.<br><br>
Posted by: Michael

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 01:46 PM

Most stuff out there is copyrighted and I for one would not be uploading anything anytime, but I wouldn't be downloading at work either. As Sam mentioned unlike P2P you have to look and see what's available rather than just search for what you want. People request things all the time. File retention of binaries is at least 30 days with a good provider.<br><br> Meek and obedient you follow the leader down well trodden corridors into the valley of steel
Posted by: RubenC

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 01:47 PM

So Thoth or MT Newswatcher are like Unison? A usenet version of Firefox?<br>And UnRAR X or Mac PAR are like Stuffit or Unzip?<br><br>
Posted by: Pete

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 01:49 PM

If you're new to Usenet, I would recommend Unison...<br><br>
Posted by: Michael

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 01:58 PM

So Thoth or MT Newswatcher are like Unison? A usenet version of Firefox?<br>In that you access the Usenet with them yes. But, they list headers and you can read posts by people using them. Thoth is no longer being updated because the author got mad about no one paying him for it. Usenet users swapping SN #s what a shocker. But, the last version still works fine for me.<br><br>A binary group looks like this<br><br><br>A non-binary group looks like this<br><br><br> Meek and obedient you follow the leader down well trodden corridors into the valley of steel
Posted by: RubenC

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 01:59 PM

Yeah, Unison appears Mac-friendly although at $11.95 for 10GB vs. $9.95 for 20GB using Easynews, ... hmm<br><br>
Posted by: Michael

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 02:06 PM

You can access Easynews through your browser too.<br><br><br><br>There may be better deals out there, but this works for me. And I haven't seen any better deals with 30+ day file retention as EasyNews has.<br><br> Meek and obedient you follow the leader down well trodden corridors into the valley of steel
Posted by: RubenC

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 02:11 PM

It appears these usenet services are month to month, so I guess I could try it out and give it a whirl.<br><br>
Posted by: RubenC

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 02:16 PM

Thanks Michael, Sam, I appreciate the explanation.<br><br>
Posted by: steveg

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 06:11 PM

Sheesh! And I thought it was someting a fisherman does. <br><br>
Posted by: MacGizmo

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 09:07 PM

Usenet is for two things... porn and software piracy, period. Fortunately, it's VERY GOOD for both. <br><br>
Posted by:

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 09:15 PM

Ah, the unenlightened view. Well... as long as people like you think that Usenet is only good for what you think it's good for... <br><br>Excellent.<br><br>
Posted by: MacGizmo

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 09:53 PM

Uhhhhh, yeah. Sammy ole pal, I was using Usenet before you knew what a computer even was.... so shaaatttaapp!<br><br>
Posted by: Bryan

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/03/06 11:30 PM

Ain't it great? That's what people think IRC is for...just boring, useless, cryptic Internet Relay Chat. Keeps out the riff-raff!<br><br>
Posted by: ezyrider

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/04/06 10:15 AM

Usenet...the last frontier...I used Thoth forever and even paid that shmuck and he still quit developing it. It's Unison all the way now. You can download anything from Adobe CS Studio with detailed info on how to get around the phone home authorization to movies currently in theaters to every type of music usually encoded at audiophile quality 192-320 kbps. Yes it is piracy heaven but I HAVE found long out of print, impossible to find music that I would have paid for had I been able to find it elsewhere. I was able to digitally replace my entire vinyl collection (500-600 LPs) through Usenet. That way the RIAA doesn't get my $$ twice.<br><br>I wish the 24 tv series group would start posting. It started up a few weeks ago but nothing yet. I do have a ton of 3 Stooges myself...<br><br><br>
Posted by:

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/04/06 10:31 AM

See alt.binaries.ipod.video.<br><br>
Posted by: RubenC

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/04/06 11:06 AM

<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr><p><br>Usenet is for two things... porn and software piracy, period. Fortunately, it's VERY GOOD for both. <p><hr></blockquote><p>I like your thinking. <br><br>
Posted by: RubenC

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/04/06 11:08 AM

I've been exploring Unison via my ISPs server, still trying to figure out how to look at stuff. Would using Unisons servers be better?<br><br>
Posted by: Bryan

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/04/06 11:14 AM

<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr><p>Would using Unisons servers be better?<p><hr></blockquote><p>The ISP's offerings are almost never going to be as good as a dedicated service. Plus, the ISP will limit you usually to a few gigs a month downloads. <br><br>I've heard Giganews is good, there are others. <br><br>
Posted by: RubenC

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/04/06 11:42 AM

I was trying to unstuff an .RAR file using UnRarX and it said it was not a .RAR file, are there other programs that uncompress?<br><br>
Posted by: Michael

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/04/06 01:52 PM

The file may have been corrupt or incomplete. Or it may have not been the first file. You need .001 then .002 and so on. You can tell UnRAR X to save broken or incomplete files. This will allow to download the .rar, 001, 002 and combine them and see if the file is of a good quality before downloading the rest. Also try downloading the Par2 file (the smallest one) and put the files in one folder and use MacPAR to check the files.<br><br>[color:purple] st911.org</font color=purple>
Posted by: Bryan

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/04/06 04:09 PM

MacPAR deluxe works for me. UnrarX can be kind of a headache. <br><br><br><br>
Posted by:

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/04/06 06:59 PM

I've never had a problem with UnRarX. It couldn't be any easier. You double-click the rar file, UnRarX opens and does its business. Only .0124% of the time is there ever a corrupt or missing segment. Then, and only then, do I take the time to get the PAR files...and that's when MacParDeluxe springs into action. Here again, the mastery of the double-click is the meat and potatoes of the whole operation.<br><br>
Posted by: Bryan

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/05/06 07:45 AM

I think I'm just always missing rar files...so MacPar picks up the slack. <br><br>Perhaps it's the complicated usage of the "Download" button in Unison that makes Usenet seem so cryptic to the great unwashed. <br><br>
Posted by: RubenC

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/05/06 12:24 PM

I had tried downloading the first file from a set to see if the quality was good, and it's probably like you said,<br><br> "You can tell UnRAR X to save broken or incomplete files"<br><br> and I wasn't aware of that.<br><br><br>
Posted by: hayesk

Re: What is ...Usenet? - 03/05/06 01:16 PM

Before there were web-based forums there was UseNet.<br><br>UseNET consists of newsgroups (think MacMinute Lounge as a newsgroup) categorized. So, for example, all computer related newsgroups were called comp.something. All Mac computer newsgroups were comp.mac.something, and so on.<br><br>Newsgroups are entirely text-based. People encoded binaries into text files (remember binhex? uuencode?) so they could transmit them within binary newsgroups. Some newsgroups only have a purpose of distributing binaries, legal or not.<br><br>The nice thing about UseNet, is that the articles aren't kept in one place. If you post an article to a newsgroup, it is automatically distributed to every single news server that offers that newsgroup. This is why it is hard to shut down an illegal binary news group - nobody owns it, and it is everywhere. Napster was easy to shut down, because there was one place where the indexing went through. Not so with newsgroups.<br><br>The protocol for newsgroups contained support for moderators - where all posted articles had to go through moderators before being distributed to the rest of the world, but the functionality was limited.<br><br>Newsgroups also did not have features like post counts, avatars (well, they sort of got them later with "X-Headers"), or personal mailboxes, etc. that online forums have - this is probably why they aren't as popular anymore.<br><br>However, they were much more efficient. No page reloads everytime you want to reply, no constant ads flashing in your face. You could download the entire days worth of posting in a newsgroup in seconds - even with hundreds of articles.<br><br>My ISP no longer offers Usenet. My friend switched ISPs because of it, because he likes to download binaries. All non-binary newsgroups are available at groups.google.com anyway, so it's not that big of a deal.<br><br>