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i am new to usenet, need help on how to use it.

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I am new to usenet, need help on how to use it.
Jun 1 '07 #1
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juan brown said:
I am new to usenet, need help on how to use it.
You're doing fine so far. Here are a few links to help you out:

Quick summary of smart Usenet use:

1) make sure you're in the right group for the subject you want to
discuss; if you're not sure what the right group is, pick one that
seems likely and ask your question there, with an addendum such as "if
this isn't the right group, could someone please point me to a better

2) stay cool - Usenet is a text medium in which it is hard to convey or
read emotion accurately. If you are offended by something someone says
to you, take the time to consider that they may not have been trying to
offend you. Language barriers, hurried replies, and simple
misunderstandings can all make for heated exchanges. Avoid the
temptation as much as possible.

3) stay patient - Usenet is asynchronous. The person who knows exactly
what you want to learn may not even read your article until two or
three *days* after you posted it. Don't re-post just because you get no
replies straight away.

4) learn the posting conventions of the group(s) in which you
participate - for example, in comp.lang.c the convention is to quote
only enough of the material you're replying to so that sufficient
context is available, and to write each point of your reply directly
under the material to which it refers. Examples abound - read a few. In
fact, read a few dozen or a few hundred.

5) be aware that any public forum is bound to have a few nutjobs. Learn
to ignore them. The folks that talk sense tend to stand out.

6) read the links I posted - especially the comp.lang.c FAQ if you plan
to use comp.lang.c at all.

7) have a great time, and learn lots!

Richard Heathfield
"Usenet is a strange place" - dmr 29/7/1999
email: rjh at the above domain, - www.
Jun 1 '07 #2

P: n/a
juan brown wrote:
I am new to usenet, need help on how to use it.
Well, you seem to have the mechanics of it working.

But, Usenet is more than just the mechanics of posting and reading; it is a
community of people and it has rules. Some of the rules are "human behaviour",
and some are imposed because of the mechanics. Here's a few of them to get you

1) Usenet newsgroups are named by topic - it is considered rude to discuss
things that are off topic, and is discouraged (both your post and my reply
are, for instance, off-topic for comp.lang.c, and I /should/ just stop right here)

2) Usenet newsgroups, unless explicitly indicated, are /not/ for the posting
of binary data, such as executable programs or images.

3) Usenet is asynchronous, and there is an inherent time delay between the
initial posting of an article, and it's distribution to the readers. The
readers will encounter another time delay if/when they post their reply. Be
patient - it takes a while for answers to come.

4) Because of the asynchronous nature of usenet, it is possible to miss
relevant posts. It is considered good manners to retain some context in any
reply you post, so that readers who have missed the previous posts can still
read and understand the reply.

5) There are a number of ways that you can compose your reply. The (by
informal agreement) most polite way is to intersperse your comments with the
relevant portions of the original message, trimming away (and indicating so)
any irrelevant portions. Frowned apon is the practice of "top posting" where
you position your reply /before/ the quoted material from the original post.

6) It is considered polite to retain attributions when posting a reply. More
to the point, it is considered rude to delete or misrepresent attributions.

7) Google Groups is not Usenet.

8) We don't do homework. Not unless you prepay us. We are *not* cheap.

9) Never multi-post (post the same message independantly to many groups).
Cross-post (post one message, listing several groups) if you must, but pick a
single group to "follow up" in, and set that follow-up on your original post.
Choose your groups wisely when you cross-post - do /not/ cross-post to
irrelevant groups.

10) Read and understand Eric Raymond's "How to ask Questions the smart way"
( before posting a question.

11) Audit your newsgroups before you post to them. Read them for a week or so,
just to make sure that you have selected the /right/ groups to post to.

12) We are not your helpdesk. Do not /demand/ assistance from us. We
/volunteer/ our knowledge here, so don't abuse it.

13) Before you ask, RTFM (Read The Fine Manual) and STFW (Search The Fine
Web). Most important problems have occurred before, and there likely is a
solution out there somewhere. Google is a good place to start your STFW
search, and Google Groups /does/ have an archive of the activity in most of
the usenet groups.

And the list goes on.

Lew Pitcher

Master Codewright & JOAT-in-training | Registered Linux User #112576 | GPG public key available by request
---------- Slackware - Because I know what I'm doing. ------

Jun 1 '07 #3

P: n/a
juan brown wrote:
I am new to usenet, need help on how to use it.
Here are some references for you.

Some useful references about C:
< (C-faq)
< std)
< (C-library}
< (GNU docs)
Posted via a free Usenet account from

Jun 2 '07 #4

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