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Message of the Day (MOTD) Archives

2000

General Information
12/29/2000 12:20AM EST

 

Technicalsupport for the 3.3 version has been pretty light.  We assume that to meanthat we finally made a clean release!  The technical support questions wehave received are usually about not downloading as many headers as expected inthe Post List.  Remember to set your "First Time Records" setting(FTR for short) to a number appropriate to the type of news group you areprocessing.  Straight picture groups work fine with an FTR in the 1000's. If you are looking for MP3 or other large multi-part posts, you should be in the10,000 to 100,000 range.  This setting is only used the very first time youprocess a news group or after selecting "Purge Records" from theright-click menu in the groups window..  From then on, only new records aredownloaded.  For more info on why, read the FAQ (old link removed) or our Tips andTricks page (old link removed.

 

Windows ME Bug Fix + Info
12/19/2000 11:40PM EST

 

Wethink we've fixed the Windows ME bug.  Not all ME users experienced thisproblem but the ones who did, please go to our update page (old link removed) and download version 3.31B1.  This release is only for ME userswho experienced problems accessing their news servers.  Everyone elseshould stick with the official 3.3 release.

 

Possible Bug Report
12/16/2000 11:30AM EST

We've had reports from some users of Windows ME that they can no longeraccess their news server when upgrading to version 3.3.  If you haveexperienced the same problem, please let us know through our Newsbin Support Form.

Official Release of NewsBin Pro Version 3.3!
12/9/2000 2:00PM EST

We have officially released version 3.3!  Thanks to all ourusers who endured through our long, long beta testing process.  We believe3.3 to be the most stable release we've made to date.

Please read our Release History (old link removed) for details on version 3.3.

There are a few non-critical known bugs:

  1. Datarate gauge will freeze after 4GB of downloads in onesession.

  2. Post Limiter only applies to new headers, not storedheaders.

  3. Systems being pushed very hard by insufficient RAM and ahigh bandwidth connection may lose a few bytes here and there in largedownloads (i.e. MP3 files may "skip").

If you encounter any other problems, please use our Technical Support Form.

 

============= Format Change, December 9, 2000 ================

 

Saturday, December 9, 2000 6:25 PM EST

NOTICE:

We physically moved ourservers to a new location early this morning and the new IP addresses tooksome time to propogate across the internet.  We just wanted toexplain why you couldn't see the MOTD most of the day.

If you haven't upgradedto 3.3 yet, it is sitting patiently waiting for you to download it! You can read about it and download it from (old link removed).

 

Thursday, December 7, 2000 1:25 AM EST

NEW RELEASE:

We finally didit!!!  Version 3.3 is Now Available! (old link removed)

Thanks to all our userswho helped us through the very long beta process.  We are very happywith the results and hope that you will be, too.  We will probablytake a break for the holidays before jumping into beta testing for version3.4.  We have a full list that keeps NewsBin under constantdevelopment as it gets better and better.  This is due to the manygreat suggestions from you all.  Thanks for sticking with us.

NewsBin DevelopmentStaff (all two of us!)

 

Tuesday, December 5, 2000 11:45 PM EST

Update:

Well, neither of us werehit by a truck but our mail server might as well have been.  We areready to release 3.3 but since our mail server is dead right now, we don'twant to miss any messages in case some last minute problem crept in.

If you sent email to us after 9:00PM EST, we never received it.  If you don't hear fromus tomorrow, you should probably re-send your message.

We're shooting for the3.3 release by midnight Wednesday, December 6.

 

Tuesday, December 5, 2000 4:00 PM EST

Attention Usenetserver Users:

1)  It has come toour attention that usenetserver has permanently reduced the number ofconnections from 10 to 6.  Because of this, you should run no morethan 5 connections to usenetserver.  Remember, one connection isadded by NewsBin for header downloads.

2)  Usenetserver iscurrently having a problem with authentication.  If you are running 5or fewer connections but  you still notice authentication failures,this is the cause.  As a temporary workaround, you can reduce thenumber of connections that NewsBin uses by turning off the signaturecache, disabling the filename filters, keeping the download list full, andrunning fewer connections than you normally would.

Usenetserver has toldseveral of our users that this is a NewsBin problem.  We talked tothem directly and they acknowledged that they are having problems withtheir authentication server.  They assured us that they are workinghard to fix this.

With any luck, you'llsee 3.3 out tonight, unless one of us gets run over by a truck.

 

Sunday, December 3, 2000 10:30 PM EST

3.3 Update:

First, we'd like to thank the "Silent Majority" for speaking up over the last couple of days.  We have received enough information to track the problem down.  We believe it is due to a change we made in version B18 to handle news servers implementing server farms.  We've discoveredthat not all news servers fully support the NNTP mechanism we chose touse.  In particular, Newscene seems to have a problem with thismethod.  We have decided to delay this release a couple of days so wecan switch back to our old download method and perform adequate testing tomake sure we didn't break something else.

P.S. If you reported a problem this weekend and didn't get a reply from us, we apologize but we were swamped with email.  We did read every single email message and ithelped us come to this conclusion.  Thanks again for all yoursupport.

 

Saturday, December 2, 2000 2:30 AM EST

3.3 Update:

There is only one thing holdingup the 3.3 release: data missing in large file downloads.  This onlyseems to occur on Windows 95/98 machines running on a high speedconnection with multiple simultaneous downloads or otherwise pushing theirmachine hard.  It may be an Operating System problem.  If youfind that a file was downloaded and it is missing some bytes in the middle(i.e. MP3 files that "skip") then set the connection counter to1 and download the file again, by itself (may have to use ctrl-Y, ForceDownload).  There are a few other reports of bytes missing off theend of some downloads but it may be news server related.

Out of 10,000 people whodownloaded 3.3B18, less than 10 reported these problems.  Do we havea silent majority or a vocal minority with these reports?   :-)

Unless we get more than 10 people(.1%) saying we should NOT release 3.3. yet, we will be publishing NewsBin Version 3.3 this weekend.   Please use our Technical Support Form.

 

Wednesday, November 29, 2000 11:00 PM EST

3.3 Update:

We've received many OK'sto make B18 the final release but, we've had a few of people report thatNewsBin periodically downloads large multipart files and either clips alittle bit off the end or loses some bytes in the middle.  We havebeen unable to re-create it so if you have experienced this, and you canre-create it, please send us the name of the news server, the news group,and the post you were downloading so we can try to figure this oneout.  To contact us, please use our Technical Support Form.

Thanks.

 

Tuesday, November 21, 2000 11:15 PM EST

3.3 Update:

Version 3.3B18 appearsto be very stable and we have had very few problem reports.  We havesent a 3.3 pre-release to a few people to make sure nothing broke duringour release build.  So far it looks good.  We are hoping tofinally, finally, finally release 3.3 this weekend.  

We've got a ton ofthings on our plate for 3.4 already so if you enjoyed the beta process andbeing on the leading edge of NewsBin development, stick around!  Forthose of you waiting eagerly to settle in with an official release, yourwaiting is almost over.

We'll keep you posted.

 

Saturday, November 18, 2000 12:15 AM EST

New Release:

We've just released Version3.3B18.  This fixes a problem in B17 using AutoMode to downloadmulti-part posts.  We've also made B18 more tolerant of news serverfarms that are not in sync with each other.  Go to (old link removed) to download B18 and to see the full list of bug fixes and changes.

If you find anythingelse, let us know through our Technical Support Form. We are having fewer and fewer severe problems and are definitely closingin on a solid 3.3 release.  Thanks again to all our beta testers for all thecomments, suggestions, and bug reports.

 

Sunday, November 12, 2000 1:10 AM EST

New Release:

Version 3.3B17 has justbeen released.  We've re-worked the memory manglement, I meanmanagement, and we are now consuming less memory and cleaning it up fasteron exit than before.  Hopefully this will keep your system fromgroaning too much on those long runs and stop crashing on exit. We've also made the quality of the thumbnails (high or low resolution) anoption and added a switch to turn off displaying incomplete posts. Go to (old link removed) to download B17 and to see the full list of bug fixes and changes.

If you find anythingelse, let us know through our Technical Support Form. We're ready to put 3.3 to bed now.  Let us know if you find anyshow-stoppers.  Thank you for all thecomments, suggestions, and bug reports.

 

Saturday, November 4, 2000 12:30 AM EST

3.3 Update:

Version 3.3B17 is closeto release for testing.  We're tracking down a possible memory leakproblem when NewsBin is run for extended periods (> 12 hours) at highdatarates.  The symptom is that NewsBin takes a ton of RAM (250MB+)and then takes forever to exit, or crashes on exit after pegging the CPUat 100% for many minutes.  This only affects people who are reallyhitting usenet hard with NewsBin.

Here is the status list for B17:

  1. Hi/Low ResolutionImage Switch.  DONE

  2. Show/Hide IncompletePost Switch. DONE

  3. Fix bug whereidentical subjects for single part posts get lumped together as oneheader in the Post List. DONE

  4. Not releasingconnection when work is finished. DONE

  5. Don't prompt to"Clear Download List" if there is nothing there. DONE

  6. If the same file isdownloaded simultaneously with two different threads, one gets savedin the NewsBin directory.  INPROGRESS

  7. Possible memory leakand/or high resource utilization during very long runs.  INPROGRESS.

If you find anythingelse, let us know through our Technical Support Form. We'll be working on these problems this weekend.  Thank you for all thecomments, suggestions, and bug reports.

 

Sunday, October 29, 2000 9:30 PM EST

3.3 Update:

Version 3.3B16 is notwithout its problems.  A number of people do not like the low-resthumbnails as a tradeoff against performance so we are looking intoimplementing a hi-res/low-res switch.  Also, a number of people haverequested the ability to turn off the showing of incomplete posts. So, here is our list for B17:

  1. Hi/Low ResolutionImage Switch

  2. Show/Hide IncompletePost Switch

  3. Fix bug whereidentical subjects for single part posts get lumped together as oneheader in the Post List

  4. Debug problem withfalse "Failed to Download Body" errors.

  5. Research report ofproblem processing multiple attachments in the same post.

If you find anythingelse, let us know through our Technical Support Form. We'll be working on these problems this week.  Thank you for all thecomments, suggestions, and bug reports.

 

Friday, October 27, 2000 10:00 PM EST

New Beta Release:

Version 3.3B16 is nowavailable!  Yeah, yeah, we're still in beta but these last few have been very stable.  We made some performance improvements to cut down CPU utilization and decrease memory usage while maintaining the highest bandwidth utilization possible.  Get the details and download the beta here.  As before, contact us through our Technical Support Form if you find anything that would preclude us from making this a final 3.3release.  Thanks again for your patience and support.

Speaking of bandwidth,there was some confusion when we mentioned  that usenetserverdoes not bandwidth limit you and allows 10 simultaneous connections. Keep in mind that some cable modems do limit you by total bandwidth, notjust bandwidth used hitting the news server.  For example, some cablemodems can handle 10Mbps but are bandwidth limited down to 1.5Mbps. This is different than a news server limiting your per/connectionbandwidth to 128Kbps as Supernews does.  Also, even though NewsBinonly allows 8 simultaneous connections, you use an additional connectionretrieving headers and another connection if you are reading posts (ctrl-R- Read Post Body on the right-click menu).  Usenetserveris optimized to handle all that NewsBin can suck out of it, given thelimitations of your internet connection.  I hope that clears thingsup.

 

Tuesday, October 24, 2000 11:00 AM EST

3.3 Update:

Version 3.3B15 still hasthe freezing datarate gauge problem.  We are now testing a fix but itwill still break at 4GB of continuous downloads.  The odometer willgo far past 4GB on subsequent runs.  The real fix is more involvedand we will put it off until we start work on 3.4.   Expect aB16 soon.

Many people haveupgraded their news service to take full advantage of NewsBin'sperformance.  We've had many messages of thanks for recommending usenetserver. Here is an example of one message we received:

I followed your adviceand decided to try usenetserver. My throughput went from 250-500Kbits/s to3Mbits/sec. It's worth paying a little more (I'm a volume user) so Isigned up for 12GB service to get stuff in a matter of minutes. I won'thave to run my machine all night long anymore. Thanks for taking the timeto research this for us.

 formally pissedoff @Home user

Trivia:Today is our 3 year anniversary of selling NewsBin online. We startedselling NewsBin back in 1995 for $10 and only by check.  On October24, 1997, we released version 2.0 and started selling online through PsL(which has been bought out by Digibuy - Digital River).  We believethat we were the first to offer a Windows based automated usenet binarydownloader and we've come a long way from the old 1.x series of NewsBin. Thanks to all our users, registered and unregistered, for choosing NewsBin.

 

Friday, October 20, 2000 8:30 PM EST

Cable Modem NewsAccess Update:

Thanks to everyone who responded telling us aboutyour news access through cable modem ISP's.  What we've found is thatmost systems either limit the number of connections, limit the bandwidthper connection, or both!  Some even give you full bandwidth until Xbytes are downloaded and then they start limiting you.   Ouropinion is that the only way to get full use of your available bandwidthis to sign up with a real news service like UsenetServer. They do not bandwidth limit and they allow up to 10 simultaneousconnections.  They also carry a very complete set of newsgroups tochoose from.  Their standard account is $10/month and considering thecontent and the speed, we think it is well worth it. 

Beta Status:

We've found a bug that makes the nag screen popup prematurely in some cases and also found a situation where NewsBinhangs on to the server connection even when all downloads arecomplete.  This only happens if you delete posts from the downloadlist.  We've had a couple of reports that the datarate gauge stillhangs but we cannot reproduce it ourselves.  If you find anythingelse, please contact us through our Technical Support Form.

 

Wednesday, October 18, 2000 12:30 AM EST

NEW BETA RELEASE::

We have just made 3.3 Beta 15 availablefor download.  This has very few changes from B14 but enough to keepit in beta for one more iteration.  Please give it a try and contact us through our Technical Support Form if you find a reason that this should NOT be the final 3.3 release. You can read about the changes and download the release from (old link removed).

As for our cable modem bandwidth inquiry, thankyou for your many responses.  It appears that a majority of the highspeed access providers are limiting per connection download speeds. Also, it appears that if you run NewsBin in automatic mode, you may beviolating your terms of service for your ISP (looks like you have to sitin front of your computer all night now).  We are researching analternative and will let you know via MOTD in a few days about ourfindings.

 

Sunday, October 15, 2000 11:50 PM EST

Attention Cable ModemUsers:

We have been getting reports from cablemodem users, especially @home users, that they seem to be limiting yourper/connection datarate.  If you see a substantial decrease in yourdatarate and you see a linear increase/decrease as you add/removeconnections.  If you do see this, please let us know at Technical Support Formand let us know who your provider is.  If we can verify this, we'llput out another MOTD and give you guys ammunition to complain to your ISP.

We've finally fixed a problem that hasbeen plaguing us in 3.3 involving switching our counters to 64bits so thebyte counters don't wrap at 4GB anymore.  Because of the type ofchanges we did, we will have to release another beta before the final 3.3just to be sure we didn't introduce any new problems.  Look for the3.3B15 in the next couple of days.

 

Monday, October 09, 2000 11:30 PM EST

3.3 Update:

We are now testing a candidate for thefinal 3.3 release.  We have been trying to track down some nagginglittle bugs and we think we are at the point where 3.3 is ready togo.  Besides, we're having a tough time holding Quade back from implementing some of your great ideas in 3.4!

Remember,this is a free upgrade to anyone who has registered a version in the 3.xrange.  Thanks for your patience.

 

Monday, September 25, 2000 10:40 PM EST

3.3B14 Note:

When we fixed the problem with NewsBinconfiguration files getting saved in the wrong directory, we created apossible side effect.  If, after upgrading to 3.3B14, your filtersstop working, you may find that your original files are in the "C:\MyDocuments" directory.  3.3B14 automatically creates newconfiguration files in the directory where NewsBin was installed. You can either re-enter your filters or copy the subject.dat, posters.dat,and filename.dat files into the directory where NewsBin isinstalled.  You can also go under the "Options" screen andmodify the location of these files under the "Advanced" tab.

 

Wednesday, September 20, 2000 10:15 PM EST

3.3B14 Note:

Well, we've made it through a full daywith no major bug reports.  We did find that the new option"Show Incompletes" messes things up if it is disabled.  Bydefault it is enabled so please leave it enabled until we fix thisbug.  We will be making this MOTD optional with the final 3.3 releasebut it will be turned on by default.

Keep the comments and bug reports comingto Technical Support Form. Thanks for your support.

 

Tuesday, September 19, 2000 11:25 PM EST

NEW RELEASE:

NewsBin Pro Version 3.3B14 is available for download.  This version fixes the datarate gauge,download byte counters, and the intermittent problem with new headers notdownloading.  More info here.

We really want to finalize the 3.3release so please send mail to Technical Support Form if you find any bugs or if you want to cast your vote of confidence thatthis version is ready for final release.   

We appreciate your patience with ourbeta release process.  Our goal is to have this process result in avery stable 3.3 release that will require minimal technical support fromus as we implement some of your great suggestions in 3.4!  With yourhelp, NewsBin keeps getting Better and Better!

 

Monday, September 18, 2000 10:15 PM EST

3.3B13 Note:

We are making progress on bugfixing.  We have fixed the datarate and byte counter problems. We have found, but are having a difficult time re-creating, a problemdownloading headers.  The symptom is that very few headers aredownloaded even though thousands are available on the server.  Thework-around is to right-click on the group name, and select "PurgeRecords (Catch Up)".  Then process the group again. NewsBin will then use the number entered in the "First TimeRecords" field (under the Options menu) and download that manyrecords.

We are currently testinga B14 version and will release it when we verify that we've fixed theheader download problem.  There is light at the end of the tunnel!

 

Saturday, September 16, 2000 1:30 AM EST

3.3B13 Note:

If you are having problems downloadingheaders, first check to make sure the "Enable Post Limiter" onthe "Options" screen is NOT enabled.  If this does notsolve your problem, read the next note.

 

Friday, September 15, 2000 10:40 PM EST

3.3B13 Note:

We have received a few reports that,after the spooled headers are loaded, new headers don't seem to bedownloaded with B13.  If you think you are seeing this, first, checkyour "First Time Records" setting under the options screen anddetermine if it is set correctly for the type of group you areaccessing.  For picture groups, 1000 is probably fine.  Formultimedia groups set it to at least 10000  (More details here).Next, right-click on the group and select "Purge Records (CatchUp)".  This will purge NewsBin's memory of any headerspreviously downloaded for this group.  Then process the group asusual and the most recent headers, as dictated by your "First TimeRecords" setting, will be downloaded.

Wethink we have solved the problems with the datarate gauge and bytecounters along with a few other minor bug reports and we hope to have a B14 release out to you within a week.

 

Saturday, September 10, 2000 9:06 AM EST

3.3B13 Bug Report:

Many people have reported that thedatarate gauge and byte counters are not functioning correctly.  Itseems to be an intermittent problem and we are trying to reproduce thisnow.  If anyone can re-create this consistently (see it go fromworking to not working) please let us know so we can try to re-create itas well.  Please send any additional detailed information to Technical Support Form. Thanks.

 

Saturday, September 9, 2000 11:40 PM EST

NEW RELEASE:

We have just released version3.3B13.  This release has many fixes that were requested by ourusers.  For details and to download the latest version, click here.

 

Friday, September 8, 2000 11:30 PM EST

3.3B12 Info:

Users are reporting numerous 423 errorsduring download that we've only just been able to reproduce. The problemseems to affect some Typhoon servers where the records are purged off theserver but the counters NewsBin uses to determine what records areactually on the server still show the purged records. Then when you go todownload the posts, you get the infamous 423 body not on server error.

The Sequence is:

  1. ContactServer

  2. SelectGroups - at this step the server tells what the minimum and maximumpost numbers are. Lets say 10,000 - 30,000 (20,000 records in the group).

  3. Openup Spool and read records in.

  4. Throwaway all records below 10,000, the minimum number reported by theserver.

Select post 10,001 for download. Surpriseerror 423 - Post not on server.  We're observing perhaps a 30-50 postlie between the number of the last post that can be downloaded to thenumbers reported by the server.

The work-around is to not try todownload the oldest records in the group or to just ignore the 423 errorson the oldest posts.

We are preparing another beta release,B13, that will fix many of the problems reported so far.  Look for itthis weekend.

 

Tuesday, September 5, 2000 11:00 PM EST

3.3B12 MOTDClarification:

If you find you need tocopy your .ini file out of your My Documents directory, make sure youfollow these steps:

  1. Close NewsBin

  2. Move your .ini fileto the NewsBin Directory (will not exist in the old directoryanymore).

  3. Start NewsBin

  4. Cancel the setupscreen

  5. Click on"Load"

  6. Click"Cancel" when the "Save As" box is displayed

  7. Find your .ini filein the NewsBin directory and select it.

Keep in mind that yourdownload directory may also move.  It may have been under "MyDocuments" and it will now be under your NewsBin directory.

Have fun!

 

Monday, September 4, 2000 10:45 PM EST

3.3B12 NOTES:

If your configuration file (.ini)gets created in a directory other than the directory from which you arerunning newsbin, strange things happen.  Resume capability may notwork, headers may not be spooled correctly, and filename and subjectfilters may disappear between runs.  If you are seeing any of thesethings, locate your .ini file (sometimes shows up in the "MyDocuments" directory for some reason) and move it into your newsbindirectory.  Make sure a copy does not exist in the old directory orit will still load the old one.  When you bring NewsBin up the nexttime, cancel the initial install process that NewsBin will startautomatically and click on "Load" and select your .ini file fromthe NewsBin directory.

We are working on minor bugs thathave been reported and will be releasing the final 3.3 version as soon aspossible.

 

Saturday, September 2, 2000 3:40 PM EST

3.3B12 NOTES:

Thank you for your many commentsand complements on this release.  It is proving to be one of our moresuccessful releases.

One thing we are seeing is thatthe spool created for the resume capability is not 100% compatible betweenB12 and earlier betas.  We recommend that you right-click on eachgroup and select "Purge Records (Catch Up)" to clear out the oldspool file.  If you are seeing any strangeness with the resumefeature, try this first.

New Known Bugs:

File filters are not beingapplied correctly to incomplete posts while they are being completed.

Dynamically applying "LockOut Poster" does not remove posts matching this new criteria from thedownload list.

 

Friday, September 1, 2000 11:00 PM EST

3.3B12 NOTES:

Several people have commentedabout the incomplete multipart posts (the "I" in the yellow box)and have reported that NewsBin is not downloading as many headers as itused to. 

This version shows incompleteposts and as you download more headers across different servers or groups,those posts may become complete and the "I' will disappear.  Ifyou switch to a different group, the incomplete posts hang around to seeif the missing parts may be in the other group.  We have decided tomake the showing of incomplete posts an option and we will implement thisfor the final 3.3 release.

As for NewsBin not downloading asmany headers as before, you are most likely upgrading from3.22 which handled the backtrack into news groups differently.  Inthis version, you need to go under the "Options" screen and setyour "First Time Records" number higher.  This is howNewsBin knows how far back to go.  Picture groups are fine at 1000but groups containing many multi-part posts (MP3's, Movies, etc) may needa setting of 50,000 to 100,000.  When you change the value in"First Time Records", right click on the group name and select"Purge Records (Catch Up)" so NewsBin will apply the "FirstTime Records" number again.

Known Bugs:  

1) File size filters are notworking in all cases.  Some posts spoof the file size and our backend file size filter got broken some how.

2) The download error retry limitworks against people who lose their dial-up connection.  As eachheader has a download error, they are deleted from the download list.

 

Thursday, August 31, 2000 11:45 PM EST

3.3B12RELEASE:

Comeand Get It!  With 15 minutes to spare, we have met our deadlineand released 3.3B12!  We've tested this version harder than anyother on Windows 98, NT, and Win2K.  Of course, nothing is 100percent so please let us know if you find any bugs we may have missed by contacting us through our Technical Support Form.

Keynew features include showing incomplete multipart posts (will have an"I" in the box next to the post), bulletproof resumecapabilities, and better overall reliability. You can read more about itand download the 392KB zip file from (old link removed). Have Fun!

 

Wednesday, August 30, 2000 11:08 PM EST

3.3UPDATE:

All major bugs have been fixedand we have a couple of minor touch-ups to do before releasing3.3B12.  Look for the release late tomorrow night (EST).

 

Monday, August 28, 2000 10:15 PM EST

3.3UPDATE:

Is it the end of Augustalready?  Time flies when you are having fun!  We are down to2 bugs now and will be testing a release candidate shortly.  Stillon target for August 31 release unless Quade breaks something realbad...

 

Thursday, August 24, 2000 11:02 PM EST

3.3UPDATE:

We have completed the test planand are down to 7 bugs left to fix.  Getting closer to 3.3B12release before the end of August.

 

Wednesday, August 23, 2000 12:23 AM EST

3.3UPDATE:

We are on item 200 of our 239 item test plan. We've added some nice features like showing incomplete multipart postsand have completed some of the GUI items that were never really hookedup.  3.3B12 will be worth the wait and, if no major problems arereported, it will most likely become the final 3.3 release.

Weare on track for a release before the end of the month.

 

Sunday, August 20, 2000 11:50 PM EST

3.3UPDATE:

We are on item 169 of our 239 item test plan. Minor bugs are being uncovered and we are making forward progress. Still shooting for August 31, hopefully sooner.

 

Saturday, August 19, 2000 9:15 AM EST

3.3UPDATE:

Time goes by way toofast.  We are on item 124 of our 239 item test plan.  We havenot found any major issues but we are trying to get a complete releaseof Beta 12 that will be our final 3.3 release candidate.  We arenow shooting for the end of the month (August 31).  Please bearwith us.

 

Saturday, August 12, 2000 11:30 PM EST

TIP:

Quick filteringtutorial:  NewsBin uses something called "Regular ExpressionParsing" (RegEx for short) which is not the same as the DOS filtersyou are used to.  Filtering on "*.jpg" works forfilenames but, if you are filtering a subject where the ".jpg"may not be at the end of the string, you need to use "*[.]jpg*". Why the square brackets around the dot?  Because the dot (orperiod) by itself means "Any single character".  Thebrackets mean "match this character" or "one of thesecharacters" if you put more than one character betweenbrackets.  There have been books written about RegEx but we'll beupdating our help file to include basic expressions that you may mostcommonly use for filtering newsgroup type stuff.  NewsBin usesRegEx in the "Find" box on the main screen and for the subjectand file filters under the "Spam Filters" option.

Version 3.3B12 is coming onnicely and we hope to release by the end of the weekend barring anyshow-stopping bugs.   Thank you for yourpatience and for you many suggestions and bug reports on our 3.3version.

 

Tuesday, August 8, 2000 11:45 AM EST

INFO:

We've had a fewcomplaints about this Message of the Day (MOTD) screen being forced onyou.  We've decided to make this optional when we release the final3.3 but all beta releases will have this screen so we can communicateany problems quickly to our users.

We ended up doing somemajor re-work to 3.3B12 and we are currently testing it.  If allgoes well, we will release something by the end of this week.

 

Friday, July 21, 2000 12:45 AM EST

NewsBin3.3 Tip (Does not apply to3.22 or below):

Many people have askedhow to get NewsBin to re-scan a group instead of just pulling newheaders.  The answer is to right-click on the group name and select"Purge (Catch Up)".  This will purge NewsBin's history ofreading headers from this group.  Then check your "First TimeRecords" size in the "Options" screen.  Thisspecifies the number for records (not headers) that NewsBin will pullfrom the group.  Groups containing multi-part posts should have ahigh record count (probably greater than 10,000).  Picture groupscan get plenty of headers with a record count of 1000.  After youset the "First Time Records" field, process the group byeither double-clicking on the group name or hitting the "Go"button if you are running in automatic mode.

We hope to have a3.3B12 version out within a week that fixes a few more minor bugs. Don't worry, we'll release the final 3.3 some day!

 

Saturday, July 8, 2000 3:45 AM EST

NewRelease:

A new Beta release, NewsBinPro 3.3 Beta 11, is now available  We fixed a number of thingsincluding the "Recycle Servers" and "Skip Group"functions as well as a memory leak and some spooler problems.  Click here to read more about the bug fixes and enhancements.

Download (old link removed) and copy itover your existing nbpro.exe to maintain all your settings. If youencounter any problems with NewsBin, contact us through our Technical Support Form.

 

Sunday, June 25, 2000 9:45 PM EST

Info:

We have receivedseveral support messages from people having problems authenticating with usenetserver.  If you are a subscriber of usenetserver, they seemto have changed their username format.  You now need to use your original username with an "@usenetserver.com" after it. That should solve your problem.

Wehad a report that the "Recycle Servers" option is broken inB10.  Also, several users have recommended that we choose a fileextension other than .ini for the new configuration file format. This is to allow you to associate the file extension with nbpro.exe andlaunch NewsBin by launching the configuration file.  We areconsidering this and may release a B11 soon with the "RecycleServers" fix and a different configuration filename.

Thanksto all our users who have helped identify problems in our betareleases.  The full release of 3.3 is not far away.

 

Sunday, June 25, 2000 12:15 AM EST

B10Bug Fix:

Saving filters is nowfixed!.  Click here (old link removed) to get an updatedB10 build 1914.

Extractand copy nbpro.exe over your existing nbpro.exe.  It should thenrecognize any filters you had previously set up using older versions ofNewsBin.  If you have problems, look for your old configurationfile (automatically renamed to ???.nfg.old) and load that using the"Load" button.  NewsBin will then re-convert theconfiguration file to the new .ini file format.

 

Saturday, June 24, 2000 12:50 PM EST

B10Bug:

Saving filters arebroken.  If you enter your filter information while B10 is running,the filters work but when you exit B10, you will lose yoursettings.  We'll get a fix for this out as soon as possible.

Ifyou upgraded to B10, your old configuration file was automatically savedas *.nfg.old if you want to go back to B9.  You can grab B9 again >here.

Sorryabout this but that is what Beta's are for.

 

Saturday, June 24, 2000 9:50 AM EST

Note:

If you choose to try thelatest beta, NewsBin Pro 3.3Beta 10, be aware that this version reconstructs your configurationfile to create an ASCII .ini file instead of the current binary .nfg file. You should back up your current configuration file before installing B10. Click here to read moreabout the new release and known bugs.

If you encounter anyproblems with NewsBin, contact us through our Technical Support Form.

 

Saturday, June 24, 2000 12:50 AM EST

NewRelease:

We have just releaseda very stable beta release of NewsBinPro 3.3 Beta 10.  The resume capabilities have been fullyimplemented so if you close NewsBin while actively downloading files,NewsBin will pick up exactly where it left off when you start it upagain.  Click here to read more about the bug fixes and enhancements.

Download (Old link removed) and copy itover your existing nbpro.exe to maintain all your settings. If you encounter any problems with NewsBin, contact us through our Technical Support Form.

 

Saturday, June 17, 2000 1:20 AM EST

TIP:

We have received manytech support issues related to News Server Connection Limitslately.  It appears that many news servers are locking down toprevent users from using too many simultaneous connections.  IfNewsBin appears to stall, go to the "Status Messages" tab andlook for any error messages like "Server Rejected theAuthentication" or "Downloader Failure".  When indoubt, reduce your number of connections.  If you have a good newsserver, you can use all your cable modem or DSL bandwidth with threeconnections - don't feel like you need to run all 8 just because youcan.  If you know that your news server has a limit of, say, 4maximum simultaneous connections, you should run NewsBin at 3 to saveone connection for header downloads.

 

Tuesday, June 13, 2000 10:45 PM EST

TIP:

Prioritizing multipleservers:  In the "Servers" window, you can click and dragyour servers into the order you want.  You should put your fastestserver first, even if it does not have the best retention or completenessof posts.  NewsBin will grab whatever it can from the first serverand search the subsequent servers for additional  headers or missingparts to multipart posts.

3.3B10 is very close torelease.  We are shooting for the end of the weekend.

 

Saturday, June 3, 2000 9:20 AM EST

Update:

BellsouthUsers:  We have a report that bellsouth news servers now support 4simultaneous connections when they used to support 6.  NewsBin willlist errors in the "Status Messages" tab if it is havingproblems.

 

Wednesday,  May 31, 2000 11:20 PM EST

Alert:

Attention BellsouthUsers:  We have received several reports that bellsouth.net newsservers are having problems.  They are currently limited to 1connection until they resolve their problem.  If you notice"Connection Refused" or "Authentication Failure"errors in the "Status Messages" tab, cut back the number ofconnections (number of thumbnails) to 1 and switch to Manual Mode(de-select "Auto Download" checkbox) because downloadingheaders requires a connection, too.

Other users canbenefit from this information.  If you ever see the above errors inyour status screen, it means you have gone over the number ofsimultaneous connections allowe by your news server.

Sorry it has been solong since we updated the MOTD, we've been busy getting version 3.3ready for release.  You can get the latest beta, 3.3B9, from (old link removed)

 

Monday,  May 8, 2000 12:53 AM EST

New Release!  Version3.3B9:

This version nowsaves the contents of the download list if you close NewsBin whiledownloading in auto mode.  If you were in manual mode, all theposts that you selected for download will appear in the post list whenyou resume.  To download this release or to read about the otherchanges to 3.3B9, click here.

Send any problemreports or comments to Technical Support Form.

 

Thursday,  April 26, 2000 11:10 PM EST

Bug in 3.3B8:

If NewsBin is notsaving your filter settings between runs, go to the "Options"and "Advanced" tab and make sure there is a filename specifiedfor filename and subject filters.  In some instances, upgradingfrom 3.22 to a 3.3 beta was wiping out this filename.

Send any problemreports or comments to Technical Support Form.

 

Thursday,  April 19, 2000 7:30 PM EST

Bug in 3.3B8:

If you have autoshutdown mode enabled and you hit the "Stop" button whileprocessing, NewsBin will crash.  As a workaround, disable autoshutdown mode if you are running NewsBin manually.  This onlyapplies to the 3.3 beta versions.

Send any problemreports or comments to Technical Support Form.

 

Thursday,  April 13, 2000 12:10 AM EST

Compatibility Alert:

We just realizedthat we forgot to mention the spooled data created with 3.3B7 is notcompatible with 3.3B8.  This means any files that were partiallydownloaded with B7 will not resume under B8.  To fix this, go intothe SPOOL directory under the directory where you installed NewsBin andadd a .chunk extension to all the files.

Also, as areminder, NewsBin 3.3Bx configuration files will not work if you go backto 3.22.

Send any problemreports or comments to Technical Support Form.

 

Tuesday,  April 11, 2000 12:15 AM EST

New Release!:

We just releasedversion 3.3B8!  Click here todownload 3.3B8 and to get the list of fixes in this release.

Please let us knowif you encounter any problems with the latest beta.  We still havemore work to do before we release 3.3 so if you made specificsuggestions, it may not be in B8.

Send any problemreports or comments to Technical Support Form.

 

Monday,  April 10, 2000 12:10 AM EST

Tip:

You can set up different filtersfor different configuration files.  For example, you can have amusic config file for MP3's and a movie config file for mpg, avi's,etc.  For each different configuration file, you can go under"Options" and choose the "Advanced" tab then specifya different filename for your filters.  The drawback is that youcan only run one type of group at a time but the advantage is you don'thave to change your filter settings each time you want to processdifferent types of groups.

 

Monday,  April 10, 2000 12:10 AM EST

Known Bugs:

There are a fewknown bugs in 3.3B7 which are fixed in the soon to be release 3.3B8.

In Automodewith multiple servers, NewsBin would skip a group if it did notexist on the first server.

When startingfrom a new configuration file, NewsBin was giving strange defaultvalues, for example the "First Time Records" were set to0 for pulling headers.

In Automode,a green download arrow would stick around after manually stopping.

Look for B8 to bereleased this week.

 

Tuesday,  March 28, 2000 10:30 AM EST

New Release:

NewsBin Pro 3.3Beta 7 has just been released.  This version fixes some spoolerproblems in B6.  You will want to move your SPOOLER directory intothe SPOOL directory under the directory where NewsBin isinstalled.  Also, we now show the download progress bars whenthumbnails are disabled.

We have receivedmany feature requests that we are still trying to roll into version 3.3that are not in B7.  We have more work to do but B7 is fullyfunctional.  As always, please send bug reports to Technical Support Form.  

You can download B7 from (old link removed).

 

Sunday,  March 26, 2000 11:15 PM EST

Web Site Update:

We have received requests to make this MOTD available after NewsBin starts since it is currently configured to disappear automatically after 30 seconds if the "OK" button is not pressed.  You can view an archive of all prior MOTD messages by clicking the links in the upper right hand corner of this page.

 

Monday,  March 13, 2000 10:05 PM EST

Bug Report:

Oops, we broke the resume feature in 3.3B6.  A temporary workaround is to rename your SPOOL directory under the NewsBin install directory to SPOOLER.  Itwill then work again.  It was a typographical error in thecode.  We'll put it back to normal in B7.

 

Sunday,  March 12, 2000 10:45 PM EST

BETA Release, 3.3 Beta 6:

We've fixed the"Unable to Select Spooler File..." problem.  Also, we'vefixed the intermittent problem of auto mode skipping groups. Download it here.

We implemented anew feature - a total bytes downloaded counter that counts untilmanually reset by the user (stores the count between runs).  Thisis useful since the news servers have gone to limiting the amount youcan download depending on your service level.  For now it is globaland only is meaningful if you use one news server.  We are lookinginto implementing a counter per server for our users who use multiplenew servers.

 

Wednesday,  March 8, 2000 3:10 PM EST

3.3 Beta 4 Bug Report:

The "Unable to Select Spooler File..."message is more serious than we thought.  There is a bug thatoccurs intermittently when processing a group for the first time. Sometimes, NewsBin will not download anything from the group.  Weare frantically working on a fix for this.  We hope to have it outby this weekend.

 

Monday,  March 6, 2000 11:45 PM EST

3.3 Beta 4 Bug Report:

If you see amessage that says "Unable to Select Spooler File...", ignoreit.  This just means that this is the first time you have accessedthis newsgroup.  You should not see it twice on the samegroup.  If you do, please let us know at Technical Support Form.

We are stillworking on a fix for the Auto Mode problem.  A workaround is to gointo Manual Mode, select all the groups you want to download, thenright-click and select "Process Groups".  Then, go intothe "Task List", highlight all the posts, then right-click andselect "Add to Download List".  NewsBin will thendownload everything, just like in Auto Mode.

 

Sunday,  March 5, 2000 9:00 AM EST

Beta Bug Report:

There have beenseveral reports of a bug in Auto Mode in version 3.3 Beta 4.  Whenin Auto Mode, NewsBin seems to skip the first group for somepeople.  We are unable to re-create it under Win 98, Win NT, or Win2000.  If you have this problem, please send mail to Technical Support Formand tell us what OS you are running, how many groups you have selected,and how many servers you are running.  Also tell us if it happensto you consistently or if it is intermittent.

Also, thanks to allour registered users (and new registered users!) for their many emails expressing concern about our crack problem.  We appreciate all your support.

 

Wednesday,  March 1, 2000 11:30 PM EST

Cracks:

First of all, we appreciate all ourlegally registered users for supporting us and the sharewareindustry.  NewsBin gets better every day due to the many greatsuggestions and feature requests we receive.

We have been informed that roughly 80% of NewsBin users are using cracks. People using cracks are, in effect, stealing our software and thwarting our attempts to make shareware a full time career. There are two of us here working in our spare time to make NewsBin the best it can be in hopes that we can quit our day jobs some day.  At that point, we plan to spend more time putting outgreat shareware. We realize that shareware is based on the honor system and are disappointed to find out how many people are not keeping with the spirit of shareware.  If you are one of the people using a crack to bypass our registration process we have a request:  If you feel you have received $35 of enjoyment from your use of NewsBin, please register. You can do so with a credit card here. If we can make enough money to quit our day jobs, we promise you more and better shareware in the future.

Thanks for listening,

Quade and Dexter (Authors of NewsBin)

 

Wednesday, March 1, 2000 11:30PM EST

TIP:

Download List:  In the"Download List" tab, you can sort the list by clicking thetitle of each column to effect the order in which the files aredownloaded.  You can click on "Date" to get oldest filefirst or click on "Size" to get the smallest or largest filesfirst.  This can be done in either Auto or Manual modes.

 

Monday,  February 28, 2000 12:40 AM EST

BETA Release:

We have just released a betaversion of NewsBin 3.3!  This version saves headers and willautomatically resume multi-part downloads if there is an interruption.  Be sure to save your old configuration file for 3.22in case you need to go back.  Our select pre-beta testers havereported that it is very stable.  If you want to play with 3.3, goto our site at http://www.newsbin.com

 

Saturday,  February 26, 2000 12:05 AM EST

TIP:

Simultaneous Connections: NewsBin allows you to run up to 8 simultaneous connections (or threadsor tasks).  Most commercial news servers limit you to some numberunder 8.  If you see lots of error messages under the "StatusMessages" tab saying "Authentication rejected" but youknow your username and password are correct, you may have hit aconnection limit.

Performanceguidelines:  1 or 2 connections is all you need to make full use ofdialup speeds (up to 56K).  Three connections work well with ISDN(128K).  Cable modem and xDSL people can experiment above that butwatch out for news server connection limits.  We have saturated aT1 with 4 threads so you shouldn't need more than that.

 

Thursday,  February 24, 2000 12:10 AM EST

TIP:

Multi-part Posts: NewsBin only displays the header of a post if it can find all the partsto it.  Most pictures are posted as one part put high qualitypictures, movies, and MP3's are broken up into 10 to 30 parts, even upto 80 or 100 parts depending on the size.  This is why you may see3000 headers if you use Outlook or some other newsreader but NewsBinwill only show you 300.  NewsBin is just making it easier onyou. 

 

Tuesday,  February 22, 2000 11:45 PM EST

TIP:

Troubleshooting: Whenever NewsBin seems to be doing something you do not expect, go tothe "Status Messages" tab on the main screen and see what itsays.  If there are no telling signs there, double-check anyfilters you have in place, maybe you are filtering more than youexpected.  As always, feel free to contact us through our Technical Support Formif you encounter any problems you can't solve or if you have questionsabout how a specific feature works.

 

Monday,  February 21, 2000 7:30 PM EST

TIP:

Configuration Files: You can create different configuration files to handle different sets ofnewsgroups.  For example, if you want to scan pictures groups, youmay want to configure NewsBin with your favorite selection of picturesgroups, thumbnails on, and filename filters in place to reject anythingbut *.jpg.  You can have another configuration for multimediagroups that has thumbnails turned off and file filters in place to onlyaccept *.mpg , *.avi, and *.asf.  Be sure to change the filterfilenames under the "Options", "Advanced" tab so thetwo configurations use different filter files.  You can even createa shortcut on your desktop that will launch NewsBin with a specificconfiguration file.  Just include the configuration file on thecommand line for the "Target" field under the shortcutproperties.  For example "c:\newsbin\nbpro.exe pics.nfg"will launch NewsBin with the configuration file called "pics.nfg". Be sure your "Start In" directory is the same directory whereNewsBin is installed.

 

Sunday,  February 20, 2000 10:30 PM EST

TIP:

Force Download:  If youwant to download a file that was previously rejected (due to a filtermatch) or was killed during download (using the "Kill" buttonabove the thumbnail),  you can highlight the header in the PostList and hit "Ctrl-Y" to force the download.  You canalso right-click on the file and select "Force Download".

 

Tuesday,  February 15, 2000 10:30 PM EST

TIP:

Filename Filters: Concerned about viruses?  Place a *.exe filename filter so younever download executable files.  Viruses cannot be effectivelytransmitted in data files such as pictures, movies, and music (forexample jpg, mpg, or mp3).  To be safe, you may want to also filter*.com files as well.

To do this, go under"SPAM Filters", select "File Filters", then click on"Reject Matching Filenames" and enter *.exe in the field underthe "Reject Matching Filenames" label and select"Add".  You can then also enter *.com and click"Add".  When you are done, click on the "OK"button.  Now, any file ending with .exe or .com will be rejected by NewsBin and will not be downloaded.  For more details, read our online help.

 

Sunday,  February 13, 2000 11:05 AM EST

TIP:

Duplicate Detection: NewsBin employs two levels of duplicate detection.  The first levelis based on globally unique message id that we call "PostID".  If you have already downloaded the post, NewsBin doesnot display the header unless you select "Show Rejects". The information is stored in the postid.dat file and is automaticallytrimmed to 14 days of post id's.

The second level ofduplicate detection is called our signature cache.  As you downloadfiles, NewsBin performs a calculation on the first 6K of the file andstores a 22 byte "Signature" of the file in the signature.datfile.  This method of duplicate detection is more resourceintensive than the post id method but it is good for filtering duplicatefiles that are posted at different times.  If you have existingfiles on your computer that you want NewsBin to know about, you can use the SigGen utility to update the signaturecache with information on all your binaries.

You can turn off the post idcache and signature cache from the "Utilities" menu option.

 

Saturday,  February 12, 2000 12:45 AM EST

TIP:

Filename Filters:  Ifyou are only interested in pictures, music, or other non-executablebinaries, to avoid accidentally downloading viruses, you should alwaysplace a *.exe download filter in place.  To do this, go under the"Spam Filters" option and select the "File Filters"tab.  Then select the "Reject Matching Filenames"checkbox and enter *.exe in the blank field and click on"Add".  Click on "Ok" to establish thefilter.  For more information on filters, see our help page.

 

Thursday,  February 10, 2000 8:00 PM EST

TIP:

Using MultipleServers:  If you use multiple news servers, NewsBin will scan allselected servers to find all the parts of multi-part posts.  Youcan right-click on a header and select "Properties" to seewhich servers NewsBin found the parts on.  If you process severalgroups as discussed in the Feb 9 tip, NewsBin will re-assemblemulti-part posts across groups, too.

 

Wednesday,  February 9, 2000 10:00 PM EST

TIP:

Manual Mode Tip:  Ifyou want to see all headers from multiple groups, highlight a block ofgroups from the groups screen or hold down the ctrl key and click oneachgroups you want.  When your groups of interest are highlighted,right-click and select "Process Group".  NewsBin willthen download all the headers for all the groups you have selected.

 

Wednesday,  February 9, 2000 12:00 AM EST

TIP:

Automatic versus ManualMode:  If the "Automatic DL" checkbox is marked, NewsBinwill automatically download all files in each news group you haveselected.  If you uncheck the "Automatic DL" box, you candownload the headers into the "Post List" tab and then chooseonly the files you want to download.  Do this by double-clicking oneach group or by selecting a bunch of groups (in the "Group"window on the left), then right-click and choose "ProcessGroup".  Manual mode is best for selecting MP3's or otherlarge binary files so you don't waste time downloading stuff you don'twant.

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