Same AOL I'm running. I'd be in fat city, if...I knew where the hell AOL keeps
its FTP and NNTP stuff so I could lay the numbers into Agent.
I haven't got a clue as to what is eating Mozzila's favorite son. It perks up,
goes right along, and then cannot access AOL, even though it has my correct
screen name and password.
Earthlink was even worse when I tried that. As has happened before, it left me
with a wild desire to get it the hell OFF my computer, which I did. Now, I have
to call and keep them from billing me.
I find absolutely nothing wrong with AOL's email program, but, then, I've got
almost no experience with others. It is simple to use, lets you do pretty much
what you want, and, so far, has given me few problems. Too, it takes seconds to
set up, something that can almost never be said of others I've tried to get
"I think we agree, the past is over." George W. Bush
AOL does *NOT* use NNTP. They run a proprietary protocol, that *only* their
software knows how to talk to.
And, as you know, they're shutting those machines down.
You *cannot* access AOL 'news' with a conventional newsreader, like "Agent".
For text-only groups, sign-up with individual.net, and then put *their*
news-server info into Agent, or whatever.
Obviously, It can't access any of AOL's 'proprietary' content -- like the chat
And, in and of itself, it *won't* do the dialing like the AOL-ware will.
You need to start the AOL software _first_, then launch Mozilla's favorite
Lastly, AOL _e-mail_ requires a *DIFFERENT*FROM*NORMAL* type of connection to
read mail. Besides the AOL software, there are a limited number of programs
that know how to make that kind of connection. Netscape version 7, and above
*is* one of the programs that _does_ know how. (when you create an 'account',
it has a special type "AOL account".)
Note: the Mozilla 'all-in-one' application, and, thus, presumably, Thunderbird
as well, does *NOT* know how to connect to AOL's mail-reading servers.
IF you're happy with AOL, I will suggest that you *KEEP* it. and just
'add something else' for 'news' access.
That 'something else' comes in two parts:
1) setting up an account with a news-server operator
2) setting up "appropriate" software on your machine.
for 1), there are several free services, and a bunch of relatively inexpensive
pay ones. A partial list:
individual.net text-only, good. see <http://news.individual.net
terranews.com mediocre for the free service, much better if you pay for it.
groups.google.com clunky interface.
supernews.com best-of-breed, the largest news-service provider
the standard-of-reference for 'spam-free' newsgroups
giganews.com #2 quite good about keeping spam out of the groups
newsguy.com a bunch smaller, but *excellent* service, and personal attn.
practically as good as supernews on despamming.
easynews.com the #3 provider. NO direct experience. They _were_ having
problems with being "behind the power curve" on resources,
resulting in reliability issues, and having a hard time
playing catch-up. WHEN they get those issues resolved
(and they well may be, _now_), they'll again be a top-tier
provider. (while they were having problems, I couldn't
terranews.com no direct experience. reports say their pay service is
Meganewsservers.com Stay far, *FAR* away from these folks. They don't have
Aka "Hostopia" a _clue_ as to how to run a news-server business. (Or
a mail-server business -- as they try, under the name of
You've found Agent/Free Agent. It's quite good; the pay version is better. :)
There's also "Gravity" <http://www.gravity.com , which a lot of people like.
And, of course,
Mozilla, (the all-in-one, or "Thunderbird" the mail/news only product)
MS Outlook / Outlook Express -- *NOT* recommended!!
see <http://www.newsreaders.com for more than you could possibly want to
know about _real_ newsreader software, the extent of the choices, and where
to get what.
I don't want to access AOL news. AOL does that fine. I wanted to use Agent in
conjunction with AOL to access Usenet NGs. For that, Agent requires FTP and
NNTP numbers, which I cannot locate in AOL. You say it doesn't have such
numbers, which is fine. I can dump Agent and free up some disc space.
Did that. Made no difference, except that I could get to the stage where I
entered my AOL username and password for Mozilla to use. It then was unable to
Again, I do NOT want to read AOL mail or news. I want to access Usenet.
Following Mozilla's own instructions gets me nowhere.
More disc space freed up.
I will probably just use Google Groups. It is not particularly handy, and
doesn't seem to have filters, but I have neither the time nor inclination to
develop expertise in attaching various bits and pieces to AOL. I've already
pissed away a couple of days fiddling with this when I could have been doing
something profitable from either a fiscal or enjoyment stage.
I have no idea why these programs won't work with AOL 9.0, or whether it's
something I'm doing. I'd say the latter is most likely. But, as someone who
writes instruction manuals, I see that as a major fault in the instructions,
which, IMO, are often written so that someone can feel superior when saying
something like, "but, you see, everyone who KNOWS computers knows that step, so
it doesn't need to be written down."
"I think we agree, the past is over." George W. Bush
AHA! Quote: "What we have here is a failure to communicate". <grin>
I was using 'news' to *mean* exactly what you call "USENET NGs" -- *NOT* in
the sense of "current events stuff". In the computer crowd, 'news' has a
primary meaning that refers to USENET, with the 'current events' referent
being a _distant_ second-place -- *unless* context makes obvious that the
second-place meaning is what is intended. Sorry I wasn't clear.
A little history:
Traditionally, USENET was the network of server machines that exchange
'postings', 'articles', whatever-you-want-to-call-them. This network
was *very* different from the "Internet" although a fair number of USENET
servers _did_ talk to each other via the Internet. But a _lot_ of the
transmission occurred over point-to-point DIAL-UP, via automated scheduling.
In some instances people even moved stuff between locations via magnetic
tapes. The remark about "never underestimate the bandwidth of a station-
wagon full of mag tapes" *does* have a basis in fact. The station wagon
was transporting USENET data between a couple of colleges in the Research
Triangle Park vicinity, in North Carolina.
The information that was exchanged between these servers was known as
"USENET news", "netnews" , or just "news", for short.
This is why the 'categories' are known as "_NEWS_ groups". And, why
individual postings are often referred to as "_NEWS_ articles".
(I'm an _old_ f*rt -- I had USENET 'news' -- and e-mail, via the same
link -- for almost 10 years *before* I had an 'Internet' connection.)
Anyway, Agent _can_ do what you want. *BUT* you have to have made arrangements
with "somebody else" (other than AOL) for USENET access, _first_.
You'll have to specify the 'NNTP server' (aka 'news server') as the name
that that "somebody else" told you to use, and then, when the prompts come
up, enter the username/password that *THEY* assigned you (*not* your AOL
the AOL software already authenticated you to AOL, now you go "through" the
connection AOL sets up -- but not *TO* AOL -- for USENET. Thus, only the
"somebody else" that runs the NNTP server needs to validate you. So you have
to give them _their_ username/password information.
i.e., start up AOL 9, and, after it logs in, minimize it, and run Agent.
And, when the username/password prompts come up, answer with the 'magic
words' that the NNTP server operator gave you for that purpose.
The *ONLY* thing you goofed up on, was using the wrong username/password.
The "wrong key" for _this_ lock. <grin>
*NO* 'conventional' USENET (aka 'news') software can talk to AOL's USENET
servers. AOL's servers do *NOT* speak "NNTP". The *only* thing that can
talk to AOL's USENET serves is AOL's integrated software. And _that_ will
work *only* as long as AOL keeps those servers running. which is the root
of the entire problem. <wry grin>
Of course. see above. Mozilla's USENET (aka 'news') functionality uses NNTP
to talk to servers. AOL's USENET server does *NOT* speak NNTP. doomed to
*HOWEVER*, if you got to _that_ point, with the pop-up windows prompting
for the username, and then the password, you were *VIRTUALLY* THERE. You
had _ALMOST_EVERYTHING_ done correctly.
You _were_ actually connected to somebody's NNTP server. (I don't know whose,
but "somebody's" :) You were just using a username/password that was *not*
recognized by that server. You need one issued by the folks that run *that*
server, not the one from AOL.
My misunderstanding. Couldn't figure out _why_ you were entering your *AOL*
username/password into Mozilla, except for that reason.
Revised comment: You're entering the *wrong* username/password. You have to
use the one that is given to you BY THE PEOPLE THAT RUN THE nntp SERVER you
are trying to connect to. Since AOL does *NOT* have an NNTP server (the USENET
servers that they are going to be shutting down are -not- NNTP compatible;
they speak their own private bastard language, rather than the standard), your
AOL username/password will _not_ be usable for any attempted NNTP access.
Again, you have to enter the name (or IP address) of the *NNTP* server
to use. AOL doesn't have one of those. So there's nothing for Mozilla
to talk *to* at AOL. And if you specify "somebody else's" USENET server
(aka 'news' server, aka 'NNTP' server), then, "obviously" the AOL username/
password won't work -- you have to use the username/password that "somebody
else" gave you, for accessing _their_ systems.
It's the particular _combinations_ of things you're trying that doesn't work.
Desktop (i.e. 'client') software that uses NNTP to communicate with a remote
USENET server is *unable* to communicate with AOL's soon-to-be-eliminated
Trying to use your AOL username/password to authenticate yourself when
talking to "somebody else's" NNTP server doesn't work. "Wrong key for the
To make software like "Agent" work, there are two things you have to do:
1) Set up an account for access with "somebody" that runs an NNTP _server_.
2) Enter _three_ pieces of information -- *as*provided* by that 'somebody'
in step 1 -- into Agent's configuration. The "server name" (or address),
the 'username', and the 'password'. Trying to use a username/password
from a source =other= than the 'somebody' from step 1 is guaranteed to
AOL does *not* run NNTP servers, Thus they do not qualify for step 1.
Therefore, you _cannot_ use your *AOL* username/password as part of
step 2. Thus you have to make arrangements with "somebody else".
For figuring out 'how to make things work', "news.individual.net" is a
good choice, because it doesn't cost anything to set up an account there.
Just point your web browser at <http://news.individual.net and click on
the 'registration' link.
They will, and I would say the latter is the case.
AOL will actually give you a tcp/ip connection to the Internet itself, so,
once you successfully log onto AOL, your computer is actually _on_ the
Internet. (See the *tip below for more on that.) you should be able to
minimize AOL, then use ANY program that will converse in Internet protocols.
(nntp, ftp, http(browser)), etc to access a server that speaks that Internet
protocol ... In your case, an "nntp server".
IOW, in your current quest to find a news server you can, fireup AOL as your
"on-ramp" to the Internet, then once connected, minimize it and FORGET
about AOL, its logins and its passwords and go to 1 below.
You goal is to get Usenet access, so first understand a couple of simple
concepts (ALL the below is completely independent of, and has nothing
whatsoever to do with, how you connected to the Internet (AOL in your
1. You must have access to an (usenet news) "nntp" server - free or pay, and
you must know:
1a. Its Internet "address", either by ip address, or by host/machine
("188.8.131.52" or "news.giganews.com" are examples of both)
1b. and, unless it is an "anonymous" free service, you normally must
have a login and password to connect.
2. You must also have a program that will speak to the nntp server and allow
you to read and post (Agent, OE, etc.), and you must configure that program
2a. Go to the Internet address of the nntp server and attempt to
2b Provide whatever login and password are required by that nntp
server to connect.
It appears, from what you've written, that you are most likely stumbling on
2 above. That should be fairly easy to suss out once you understand the
above. and have the three pieces of information that you need to access, and
connect to the server.
Hope this just doesn't confuse the issue further.
A tip to tell if you do indeed have an ACTIVE connection to the Internet. In
most current versions of Windows, and after connection with AOL and
Click on the "Start Menu" and select "Run."
Type "cmd" in the dialog box and click "OK" or press <Enter>.
A command prompt will then appear that looks similar to an MS-DOS prompt.
Type in "ipconfig" (without the ") and press <Enter>.
If an IP address that looks similar to 184.108.40.206 is returned on the
screen, you should have an active connection to the Internet and all
programs that use the various tcp/ip Internet protocols should be working.
There will be some exceptions to this, but it AOL programs are working, then
that will further confirm that you are indeed connected.
On their home page you will find the link for Thunderbird - it makes a
You can also get spoofstick for your Mozilla or MS Internet Virus Explorer
It shows your current URL. Makes it harder to get "Phished".
Looks like it might be -- if I could ever get the darned thing to
I spent about an hour playing with it last night and I couldn't even
get the 'junk' button ungrayed, never mind setting up the filters.
The documentation on its newsreader functions is sparse and unhelpful
--RC (who currently uses mozilla for mail and Free Agent as a
"Sometimes history doesn't repeat itself. It just yells
'can't you remember anything I've told you?' and lets
fly with a club.
-- John W. Cambell Jr.
I played with Thunderbird for a while too and decided it was not worth the
effort. It does have some nice features that OE does not have, but for me
they just didn't outweigh some of the other peculiarities of it. I'm past
the point where diddling with software packages like this is fun, so I lost
interest after a short time. I'm still using Firefox, but probably only for
a short time. It's much slower than IE, and although I can't really prove
it, it seems to have a memory leak of some major proportions. I've checked
for patches or updates, but there are none on the Mozilla site. I'll
probably just go back to IE and its shortcomings.
Taste isn't disputable. :-)
Firefox is faster than IVE in my experience. (IVE = Internet Virus
Explorer) I have only seen reviews that confirm that opinion. Might be
nice if you could point to a site that doesn't download as fast on FF -
I'll send it to the developers attention.
There are many badly designed sites that only work with IVE though. I
limit my visits to them. IVE and the bad sites are too risky -- "thank
you very much but no thanks" -- due to all the "Phishers" and pimply
faced teen-bopper hackers who exploit the weakness of IIS and IVE.
BTW No evidence of a memory leak here. Again it would be nice to have
evidence to report. If you can spot anything concrete the developers
should hear about it.
Mike Marlow wrote:
==================I find Firefox to be much faster the I.E..... BY FAR... and have not
have any memory problems...
I checked and the current version is only 1.0.... you still using a
On Sat, 05 Feb 2005 10:05:22 -0500, Bob G.
If you like Firefox, you should like Opera... it's fast
never crash and very stable. Best of all it's free.
I have been using Opera since Netcraps ver Ver.4.XX
Nope - I have 1.0. What's that they say about rev 0 products? I find it to
be just an absolute hog. It stays open in my taskbar most of the time but
when I click on it, or click on a link in a post or likewise, it takes over
10 seconds for the screen to come forward and then if I try to click on
anything in the browser (menu item, address bar, etc.), I have to wait
another 5-10 seconds for the action to occur. This is just bad software. I
hate to give Microsoft any credit, but IE displays none of these problems.
bad for you maybe but not for me. I have not had this problem unless my system
is slowing down and needs a reboot. this happens more often using outlook and
IE. but a reboot every few days keeps xp running ok.
so it sounds like there is a problem with your computer.
when both are running fast 1.0 blows away IE every time.
Knight-Toolworks & Custom Planes
Custom made wooden planes at reasonable prices
The first thing I thought of was that it had to be something with my laptop,
but it's the only program that behaves that way. I've thought about
removing it and re-installing it to see if that made any difference, but
just haven't gotten around to it. Maybe...
Mike.... I think you "May" have a computer problem.. I run Firefox
on 5 different computers...in the house, garage and woodshop ..using
XP home, 2000 NT and "Me" ... as operating systems.
Firefox is faster then IE on every single one of them.... all but one
computer connects via a wireless network and the shop is 200 foot from
the AP...and I do not get a Great signal...still response is almost in
the blink of an eye...
Argh! The evidence is becoming overwhelming. I may not be able to escape
reloading it. All of my machines run 2000 and as easy as it would be to do,
can you believe I've not gone to the other machines to see if they act the
same way? Lazy is hard at work here.
Same here. One machine connects via cat5E and the rest are wireless.
Everything works fine until someone picks up that damned 2.4GHz phone...
Before reinstalling the OS try running one of the spyware removal tools such as
Lavasoft's "AdAware" ( http://www.lavasoft.com/ ) or Spybot's "Search & Destroy"
( http://www.spybot.info/en/index.html ). I've recommended the software to many
of my customers having problems similar to yours and they solved the problem I
run both of them weekly on my home machines.
Buffalo, NY - USA
(Remove "SPAM" from email address to reply)
I'll second that, except I'd suggest running both AdAware and Spybot.
They don't catch the same things.
Last week I installed AdAware on my father's computer. He's been
running Spybot regularly, but his computer was slower than it should
have been. AdAware found 134 files of bad stuff on his system.
Made a big difference in performance.
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit;
Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad
-- Suzie B
No - I meant I'm going to uninstall and reload Firefox. Spyware and Adware
are checked at least weekly on all my machines. I use both Search and
Destroy and AdAware. Great stuff. Just completed a defrag only a couple of
weeks ago as well, so I don't think the problem lies with my PC per se, but
rather with the load of Firefox on it.
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