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Accounts Page

Your Name: Your name which will appear in the 'From' field of outgoing messages.

Email for Posting: Your email address; again this will appear in the 'From' field. This doesn't have to be a correct one, in particular, you may wish to apply a 'spam block'. Eg, my address is mdwh2@cheerful.com, but I enter mdwh2@NOSPAM.cheerful.com - the reason for this is that readers of the newsgroup can realise that you have to edit the 'NOSPAM.' out (and it is wise to put instructions to do this in my .sig - see later), but I avoid automatic spamming. If you are unsure, just put your real email address. Whatever you do, you must specify an email address of the form user@domain (ie, it must have the '@' character).

Real Email for Emailing: This is for email sending - some email servers allow you to put anything in the 'From:' header, in which case leave this blank and the above email address will be used. So servers require a correct address however, in which case, enter your correct email address here (note that which address actually appears in the 'From:' address of your emails depends on the server). If in doubt, simply stick your correct email address here.

Organisation: Optional header for information to be added into the headers of messages that you post. Leave it blank if you aren't sure (your newsserver will probably fill something in).

Time Zone: Select the time zone you are living in. This is necessary so that your messages appear in the correct order when people view messages by date.

Date Display Format: How dates are displayed in the messages list.

Use Locale Prefs?: Instead of using what Time Zone you selected, NewsCoaster will attempt to read your time zone from you Locale Preferences.

Add Adjustment for DST?: This should be ticked if you live in the UK and it is during British Summer Time. Alternatively, other countries may have some sort of Daylight Saving Time where you are one hour ahead of normal. If so, then this box should be ticked. Remember to change this when you enter/exit the period of DST!

Note that the NewsCoaster assumes the your machine's clock is set to the local time, in accordance with the settings you make here.

Logging Enabled?: If ticked, NewsCoaster will log details to the file newscoaster.log in the NewsCaoster folder. This should normally be turned off, but if you find a bug, it is useful if you can send me a logfile, so turn this on, make the bug occur, then turn it off. Note that the newscoaster.log files get big very quickly; you can always delete them when NewsCoaster isn't running.

Delete Log on Startup?: This deletes the logfile everytime NewsCoaster starts. Useful in that logfiles get large very quickly - but remember to take a copy of any important logs before restarting!

Switch Groups when d/l?: If this is ticked, then when downloading news, NewsCoaster will change the currently displayed group to whatever group it is downloading for.

Don't Confirm When Deleting?: If ticked, NewsCoaster will no longer displayed confirmation requesters when deleting (doesn't apply to Permantently Deleting messages, this will alwatys require confirmation).

Delete header if body not available?: When in online mode, if you try to read a message sometime after downloading the header, the message may no longer be available. If this option is ticked, the header will be automatically deleted in such cases.

Servers Page

NewsCoaster supports multiple newsservers, which appear in the list. The information displayed is:

Server:: The address of the newsserver.

Port: The port to connect to. This will usually be 119.

Username: Your username, if authentication is required.

Authentication: Whether authentication is required.

Default: Whether this is the default newsservers. All newsgroups you set up will initially use the default newsserver, unless you choose otherwise (from 'Advanced Settings'). Only one newsgroup may be the default.

Posting: Whether to use this newsgroup for posting your messages. Note that some newsservers will not allow posting. Only one newsgroup may be used for posting.

You will probably have been given aa newsserver use by your ISP. Alternatively, there are public ones available.

Use 'New Server' to make a new entry, or 'Edit Server' to edit an existing entry (there will be a 'dummy' entry created the first time you run NewsCoaster, which you should edit). 'Make Default' makes the currently selected newsserver the default. 'Use for Posting' does the same for posting. 'Delete Server' removes the server from your list.

When you add a server, you usually just need to enter in the address. If it requires authentication (only some will), tick the box and enter in your username and password. The port should usually be 119.

If you change newsserver settings, you will be asked if you wish to reset the article pointers to newsgroups using that server. You should do this if you are changing newsservers, since different newsservers store their messages with different article IDs - please see the 'Reset Group Article Pointer' and 'Reset All Groups' Pointers' (menu options).

Other options:

Get Groups: This downloads all the available newsgroups on the currently selected newsserver into a file. Once you have done this, you can view, find and subscribe to groups by selecting the 'Groups Manager'. The groups list is saved as a text file under the name 'x.gl' (where 'x' is the name of the newsserver) in the NewsCoaster program directory, so you may examine it separately if you wish. Also, you don't have to download the group list to subscribe to groups, eg, you may already know the name of the newsgroup and assume it exists on your newsserver. Note that downloading the newsgroup will take some time (around 56000 newsgroups took about 20 minutes on my 33.6k modem).

Get New Groups: This downloads all the newsgroups from the currently selected newsserver which have appeared since you last selected this option, or the 'Fetch Group List' option. Note that if you were using a version of NewsCoaster before this option was introduced, then you won't be able to use it until you redo a 'Fetch Group List' - even if you've already downloaded the group list.

Groups Manager: You must have selected 'Get Groups' for the currently selected newserver for this to work. This option opens the Group Manager window for the currently selected newsserver.

SMTP (Mail) Server: If you wish to reply to messages via email, then you must enter in the name of you SMTP (ie, mail) server here.

Write Page

Followup Attributation Line: The text to be displayed when following up. You enter codes to insert various things:
%d - Date of the message you are replying to,
%n - Name of person you are following up to,
%g - Newsgroup the message you are replying to was posted to,
%m - MessageID of the message you are replying to,
%% - Insert a '%' character.

Charset Converter: Unused at the moment.

Signatures: The cycle gadget and text area allow you to choose your signatures. You can have up to eight. Select the signature you wish to edit with the cycle gadget, and then enter the signature in the text area. You should make sure your signature is no bigger than 80 characters wide, and 4 lines deep. If the cursor reaches the end of the text area, the line will spill over to the next line, but note that this text is wrapped, ie, a line break is not inserted. You should specifically press Return to start a new line. Also note that you don't have to enter the '-- ' signature break; NewsCoaster does this for you (similarly, you shouldn't start your signature off with a line created with hypens '---------etc', since you should inserted make use of the '-- ' signature break which NewsCoaster inserts for you).

Line Length: When you finish writing a message, NewsCoaster will insert the line breaks at an appropriate line length. Here you can specify the line length - it should really be between 60 and 80 (preferably, 70 to 76).

Auto. Rewrap: If this is ticked, when following up to messages, NewsCoaster will attempt to rewrap the lines before quoting, to make everything look nicer. Note that it doesn't always work, since it's difficult to know whether a line break is a result of the text spilling over, or whether the author wanted a new line (ie, he explicitly pressed Return).

Use 'x-no-archive' Header?: If the line 'x-no-archive: yes' is included into the header, then your message will not be included in news archives (eg, www.deja.com). You can set NewsCoaster to never do this, to always do this, or to only do this if following up to a message which had 'x-no-archive: yes' in its header (if an author didn't want his message to appear in news archives, then he probably won't want replies to it to appear either, since some or all of his original text might be quoted in the new message).

Use Shortened X-Newsreader header: As a default, NewsCoaster places an X-Newsreader header which says something like 'NewsCoaster [Amiga, 020] by Mark Harman'. Ticking this box shortens it to 'NewsCoaster'.

Snip .sig?: Removes .sig of message you are replying to (only works if the '-- ' .sig separator is used).

Read Page

Header: You can choose which headers are to be displayed when you are viewing a message. 'None' means no messages are displayed. 'Full' means all headers are displayed. 'Selected' means that the headers listed in the Text gadget to the right are displayed. You should enter in the headers, without the ':', with different headers separated by a '|'. It is set by default to:
From|To|Newsgroups|Date|Subject|Followup-To|Reply-To
(actually it is case-insensitive, but I put capital letters for neatness).

Multiple View Windows: If this is ticked, a new window will be opened when you read a new message. If you untick this, there will only be one message view window, which gets updated when you read a new message.

The next options set colours used by the view window. Note they only take effect if you are viewing a message in 'Email Format' mode; in 'Plain Text' mode, everything appears in the default text colour. To change a colour, simply click on the colour and select a new one with the MUI colour chooser which appears.

2nd Level Quoting: This is the colour used for alternate levels of quoting, ie, 2nd, 4th, 6th etc.

Coloured: Any text in a message that is surrounded by '#' characters (eg, '#coloured#' will appear in colour. This is the colour to use.

Lists Page

This page allows you to choose which columns you wish to be displayed in the message list window. Note that '# of Lines' refers to the number of lines in the complete message - ie, even if you've only downloaded the header (in online mode), it's the number of lines including the body.

MIME Page

Here you can choose the external programs used to display attachments (see here for details on displaying attachments).

To add support for a new viewer, click on 'New' - a default entry will be added to the list, which you can now change. 'MIME Type' is the attachment type (eg, image/jpeg). Select a viewer for it - you should make sure the viewer you specify is in the command path, or you should specify a full path. You should use "%s" to indicate the filename. So suppose you had specified image/jpeg, and wanted to use the program 'vt' to display jpeg attachments. In the 'Viewer' box, you would enter:
vt "%s"
Hit return, and the list will be updated. To remove a viewer from the list, select it, and select 'Delete'.

Default Viewer will be used to view all MIME Types that you have not specified in the list.

Finally, 'Okay' will save your changes to disk, and 'Cancel' will abort any changes you have made, reverting to the previous settings.