About Us
Contact us

Facebook profile


Guide to using Ximian Evolution as a Usenet newsreader.
Bookmark and Share


Usenet newsgroups are (or at least, used to be) a great way to exchange information.  Unfortunately the signal to noise ratio has dropped considerably in recent years, with spammers taking over the medium.  Nevertheless, Usenet newsgroups still have its uses. Some organizations maintain their private news servers, and some open source project like the Eclipse project, have their own newsgroups in lieu of mailing lists for discussion about their projects.

As a matter of fact, the reason I am writing this article is that, since I have been using Evolution as my email client for several years, I am used to it and wanted to use it to read Eclipse newsgroups as well, and  the procedure of adding Usenet newsgroups to Evolution wasn't entirely obvious.

Adding the NNTP Server

Newsgroups servers are formally called NNTP (Network News Transfer Protocol) servers, to add the NNTP server to Evolution, go to Edit -> Preferences -> Mail Accounts and click on the "add" button.  Click on the "forward" button of the welcome window that pops up.

On the next screen fill out your name and email address, then click "forward".

Evolution identity setup screenshot. On the next screen, select a server type of Usenet news, and enter your nntp server name in the "Host" field, and your username on the "Username" field.  Contact your ISP to obtain the name of your nntp server.

Evolution NNTP server setup screenshot.

If you know your isp's security settings, go ahead and enter them under the "Use secure connection" and  "Authentication Type" fields.  If you don't kow them, selecting "Whenever Possible" for the "Use Secure Connection" field, and clicking on "Check for Supported Types" for the "Authentication Type" field should work for most people..

Click "Forward", taking the defaults in the next screen should work for most people.  Click forward again and fill your SMTP server details on the next screen (contact your ISP if you don't know them, but they should be the same you have for your email acount).  Click "Forward" and give your NNTP account a descriptive name, I named mine "Newsgroups".

You should now see a new category on the left hand section of your Evolution mail screen.

Evolution newsgroups section If you click on the newly created "Newsgroups" section, you will see a little loading message for a while, but no newsgroups list, this is where I got stumped.  After some experimentation, I found out how to subscribe to newsgroups so that they show up when clicking on the new section.  To make it happen, go to Tools -> Subscribe to Folders, select your newsgroups server.  Once the server is selected, Evolution will pull the complete list of newsgroups on the server (be patient, this might take a while).  Once the server list arrives, ctrl-click on the ones you would like to subscribe to and click on "Subscribe".  Clicking on the "Newsgroup" section of the Evolution email screen should now display the newsgroups you subscribed to.  Enjoy using Evolution as your Usenet news reader.

Java EE 6 Development With NetBeans 7
Java EE 6 Development With NetBeans 7

Java EE 6 with GlassFish 3 Application Server
Java EE 6 with GlassFish 3 Application Server

JasperReports 3.5 For Java Developers
JasperReports 3.5 For Java Developers