Newsreader Recommendations

Graham Todd grahamtodd2 at
Thu Jan 14 10:35:59 UTC 2010

On Wed, 13 Jan 2010 21:57:47 +0000 (UTC)
"Mark C. Miller" <mr.mcmiller at> uttered these words:

> Can you make any recommendations for a good newsreader?

Well, pan is the only stand-alone (nntp) newsreader in the standard
repositories, but what do you mean by a "good newsreader"?

Do you want it to download primarily binary files?  A bug has been
found in the version of pan in the Ubuntu repositories, that stops
multi-part binaries from downloading.  The bug has been corrected in
one of the developers' git repositories, and we'll have to wait for it
to appear in the Ubuntu repository - not too long I hope.  In the
meantime, I am using brag to download binaries, which is a cli package,
but very effective, and pan for the rest.

As to a recommendation for an alternative gui newsreader, there are only
two packages that I can find: xpn or the Windows program Free Agent
running under Wine.  If on the other hand, you don't mind your email
program being used as a newsreader, my recommendations are first,
Claws-Mail and second, Thunderbird.  To get these, you will have to
allow apt-get or synaptic to access the multiverse repositories.

Don't be too hard on pan: it is being developed principally by one man,
who has taken some time off its development to do some paid work (at
least I understand).  Its website needs a overhaul, but it does have an
active mailing list, which although not high-traffic is helpful.  The
problem about 'old versions' of pan being discussed is that the primary
developer rewrote pan and now the latest version is the only supported
version, but the old version can still be found as source code on some
sites, and users still need help.

Graham Todd

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