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discussion groups (newsgroups)

What are newsgroups ? What is Usenet ?

Discussion groups or newsgroups are one of the most useful services of the Internet. Formerly reserved for experienced computer users, the Usenet network was created in 1980 to allow an exchange of information between researchers. By addressing an open question to all the community before access, it was easy to quickly obtain many answers. In the beginning, there were only a few messages per week, but the system proved to be so useful that the exchanges came to know a breathtaking growth. The choice of discussion groups then increased so much that there are presently about 30,000 on almost all possible subjects covering almost all tastes, subjects or activities, in the main languages spoken in the world.

Accessing newsgroups with Netscape:

To access the Usenet network in an easy way, we suggest you use a recent version of Netscape Navigator (version 3.0 or a subsequent one ) which now has an integrated tool well built for the construction of discussion groups.

To configure Netscape with the server of the discussion groups of Info-Internet, you must open the ``Option`` menu and choose the ``Mail and News Preferences`` option. At the line ``News (NNTP) server``, write ````.

To open the newsgroup reader, open the ``Window `` menu and choose the ``Netscape News `` option. A window similar to the e-mail manager will open and a very partial list of different discussion groups will appear. To display the complete list of available groups, open the ``Option`` menu and choose ``Show all newsgroups``. This step will take several seconds.

The list will take the form of a directory where you can click to display the contents of a particular letter. By clickind on the ``+`` and the ``-``, you can make the sub-directories appear or disappear from this list.

To register with a newsgroup, all you have to do is check the corresponding box of the newsgroup subject you wish. This way, on your next visit, the news server will display only the groups that you are registered with, to facilitate your consultation.

We recommend that you read the default newsgroups, either ``news.announce.newusers`` or ``news.newusers.questions`` or ``news.answers`` to learn more about the usage policies of Usenet and newsgroups.

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