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Thread: Alt.Binz and NewsDemon

  1. #1
    First off many thanks for what so far has been an incredibly thorough forum that has really helped me get up and running with Newsgroups.

    Daily visits here and some sound advice has got me well and truly hooked on the entire system.

    However I have had a few problems and would appreciate any advice some of you more experienced folks could provide.

    To start with I signed up with NewsDemon as this seemed to be the only Usenet Provider that I could find any reviews on that also offered PayPal options. I signed up for their unlimited access with SSL encryption.

    With this subscription I was offered NewsRover as my newsreader. Having played with Grabit and Alt.Binz as suggested by many folks here I found this NewsRover client to be...how shall I say...unwieldy?

    So first off would anyone here actually recommend me spending some time getting to know NewsRover in more detail or shall I stick with Alt.Binz (in other words is getting to know the seemingly more complex NewsRover client worth the extra effort?

    Although I like Grabit as well, Alt.Binz seems to be my only realistic option with regards SSL compatibility.

    Secondly, I have noticed that I have had a few files showing a seemingly horrible and frightening number of blocks missing...in the region of 1500 which the parity files are understandably not able to repair. Is this maybe simply because I got unlucky or is it possible I am making an error somewhere for this to be happening one in every 3-4 downloads?

    Apparently NewsDemon allows me 20 connections and I have set this in Alt.Binz but I also heard that anything over 5-6 connections is not really viable or helping me. I'd love some clarification on this and what using 20 connections as opposed to 10 realistically means.

    Thirdly, I am on a 20Mb (VirginMedia in the UK) connection and on NewsDemon (running via the US SSL server) I frequently max out at about 1100kB/s which seems a little...wrong?

    I guess again, the question is, am I maybe doing something a little wrong?

    I know these are pretty open ended questions and I am more than happy to provide more information to anyone willing to spend a little time to help.

    Once again, many thanks for all the advice already given in other threads!

  2. Newsgroups   -   #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by DepthCharge View Post
    So first off would anyone here actually recommend me spending some time getting to know NewsRover in more detail or shall I stick with Alt.Binz (in other words is getting to know the seemingly more complex NewsRover client worth the extra effort?
    That largely depends on what you want to do with your Usenet access. alt.binz is a client that is hugely optimized to downloading content from newsgroups and that comes with some limitations. The biggest issue some people have with alt.binz is that you cannot directly get headers from newsgroups, so what is left are third party search engines like binsearch, newzleech, aeton and whatever else they're called. These web-based newsgroup indexers are not always perfect and might not include a group you'd like to search for. There are some advantages though which shouldn't be forgotten: those index websites allow the comfortable and fast search through various newsgroups and in combination with the alt.binz client you don't even have to use a webbrowser to download a .nzb file.

    To make a long story short: if you're happy with what those search engines included in alt.binz can find for you, stay with the application because you won't find a better one for free.

    Quote Originally Posted by DepthCharge View Post
    Secondly, I have noticed that I have had a few files showing a seemingly horrible and frightening number of blocks missing...in the region of 1500 which the parity files are understandably not able to repair. Is this maybe simply because I got unlucky or is it possible I am making an error somewhere for this to be happening one in every 3-4 downloads?
    NewsDemon has a retention time of 110 days as per their website which means posted content is only available within that time frame. You should keep an eye on the stuff you're downloading and if it is older than that and it may explain your problems.

    Quote Originally Posted by DepthCharge View Post
    Apparently NewsDemon allows me 20 connections and I have set this in Alt.Binz but I also heard that anything over 5-6 connections is not really viable or helping me. I'd love some clarification on this and what using 20 connections as opposed to 10 realistically means.

    Thirdly, I am on a 20Mb (VirginMedia in the UK) connection and on NewsDemon (running via the US SSL server) I frequently max out at about 1100kB/s which seems a little...wrong?
    Those two questions tie into another. My example is simple: I've got a possible downstream of 4MBit/s and my Usenet provider allows me 8 simultaneous connections. As the server is located in Europe I only need to use 2 (or sometimes 3) to reach the full speed.
    Multi-threaded downloads generally allow you to download faster from the same source, you might have noticed that download accellerators (GetRight and whatever else there is) work the same way. You should be able to raise your total speed with additional connections and if your downloads are too slow with even 20 connections I can only assume it's because of servers located overseas. What could be important to know is if those 20MBit/s are achieveable with international traffic. There are some providers who have amazingly fast national speeds (where traffic is cheap) but limit you for international data.

    One important thing: you've got a fast 20MBit/s downstream, don't let anybody tell you that more than 5-6 connections will not help. There's certainly no guarantee that they will improve things but the generated overhead won't hurt in your case. I know that a friend of mine can achieve up to 40% more speed with 16 connections than with 8 but those are usually unpredictable values that are sometimes true and sometimes not.

    Just FYI: 1100kb/s means about 8.5MBit/s and it's about 50% of what should be realistically possible with your Internet connection. There's room for improvement alright, the easiest way would be to use an European server if they have one. Maybe NewsDemon offers different routings on different ports like some other providers do? Without knowing what can be done on the server side there's little to do, or advise you on for that matter.
    Last edited by Daniel; 01-22-2008 at 02:58 PM.

  3. Newsgroups   -   #3
    I use NewsBin Pro.. and if you want a copy just search for a nzb and download it. I mean.. umm its pretty easy to use ... and seems to work better than the stories I hear about the the other newsreaders out there. However, I have not tried any other cause this one works soo damn well.

  4. Newsgroups   -   #4
    Thank you both very mch for such prompt replies.

    I decided to test a theory and nip home a tad early today and I am now getting d/l speeds capping at about 2401kB/s which is way more like I was expecting to see (and indeed very happy to see!).

    I guess the tales of VM are quite true with regards evening traffic, so I will have to bear that in mind (even though I steer clear of their 4.00pm-9.00pm STM policy).

    Thanks for the info regarding headers - that was the next stage in my new adventure so I'll bear that in mind. Does NewsBin Pro allow for header searches?

    I think my only concern now is the missing block issue. I am pretty sure I checked the date of the posts I was downloading and I am confident I never search anything over 50 days anyway - but you never know if I mucked up on some of the searches and DID end up downloading something a bit past/close to the retention date of my provider.

    I'll try a couple more later and see if I am getting the same problem still.

    A sincere thanks to you both for the replies so far...now back to reading about out HOW parity files do their clever little thing...

  5. Newsgroups   -   #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by DepthCharge View Post
    Thanks for the info regarding headers - that was the next stage in my new adventure so I'll bear that in mind. Does NewsBin Pro allow for header searches?
    Yes, NewsBin Pro is capable of downloading headers. Here's a neat flash video to illustrate how it works. One word of warning though: this way you are able to receive the unfiltered content but your administrative effort has considerably grown. Downloading headers for several (hundred?) groups, battling with spam posts, keeping the headers up to date and most importantly keeping track of new content can be a challenge. But: NewsBin Pro is a good choice for that next step

    Quote Originally Posted by DepthCharge View Post
    I think my only concern now is the missing block issue. I am pretty sure I checked the date of the posts I was downloading and I am confident I never search anything over 50 days anyway - but you never know if I mucked up on some of the searches and DID end up downloading something a bit past/close to the retention date of my provider.

    I'll try a couple more later and see if I am getting the same problem still.
    You can try to have a look at the retry count and -delay and raise their values, it might improve your problem.

  6. Newsgroups   -   #6
    Much appreciated there Daniel, and I see what you mean about the added complications.

    Good fun though wading through it all!

    I do seem to have a serious issue though at this end and I am unsure what you meant about the retry count and -delay values.

    As a test to make sure I was not looking at old posts I went to FST link :

    https://filesharingtalk.com/vb3/f-mov...eplica-271583/

    From there I grabbed the .NZB file and chucked it over to Alt.Binz

    Again I seem to have a recurring issue with corrupted or incomplete rar files . I have checked the Gone.Baby.Gone.DVDR-Replica - par2.zip and run QuickPar and it still shows 6 blocks missing for the repair.

    Any additional advice on would be really appreciated folks.

  7. Newsgroups   -   #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by DepthCharge View Post
    I do seem to have a serious issue though at this end and I am unsure what you meant about the retry count and -delay values.
    alt.binz allows you to configure how the client should deal with missing posts, which is a problem that you seem to have. I've never had so many missing parts before so there are two reasons for it: a) it's the fault of NewsDemon but seeing as I'm no member there and know noone else who is it's something another third party might help you with or b) your client isn't configured to its maximum potential.

    -> Setup -> Connection -> [423, 430] Article not found [/502] -> Retry count

    This means that alt.binz will retry parts that haven't been available for whichever reason and in your case it's worth a shot to raise the number, temporarily at least, instead of merely skipping over it after it failed the first time. I don't know what the usual setting of that option is but I've got a 5 retries with 5 minutes delay and it's working fine.

  8. Newsgroups   -   #8
    Hey there,

    I am too on Virgin Media, didn't you know that they offer a very good news server? Sure the retention rate is shocking, but it's free.

    I use alt.binz and it's great, you can use their free one, or donate and get a better one (I suspect, I don't have the paid one). Great for searching many servers at once.

    Cheers,
    Phasetwo.

  9. Newsgroups   -   #9
    Sorry I did not get back sooner on this one Daniel. I tried those settings you are working with : 5 retries, at 5 minute intervals and it seems to have done the trick handsomely so thank you very much.

    To "phasetoo", yes I am aware of Virgin's newserver and I did try it. Like you said though the retention is simply awful and with NewsDemon I have the added bonus of being able to run 20 connections with SSL - definitely worth the extra in my opinion.

    Cheers for all the help, brilliant as always !

  10. Newsgroups   -   #10
    lol, yea NewsRover is the devil. Whoever made that program never passed a class in user interface.

    Personally i find the best way to get files is useing hellanzb (especially if you use linux)

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