Discussion:
Any alternative to news.gmane.org ?
(too old to reply)
Héctor Abreu
2018-05-17 11:14:55 UTC
Permalink
Hi,

My slrn newsreader won't connect to news.gmane.org and everytime I check
the status of that server it is apparently down. It's been happening for
weeks, probably months now. The only information I find about that
service is that it's practically discontinued.

What alternatives are there if I want to continue following some email
lists via a newsreader? I prefer the newsreader format (slrn) rather
than an email client.

Thank you in advance for any hint or help.
--
Héctor Abreu.
Michael Bäuerle
2018-05-17 12:56:50 UTC
Permalink
Post by Héctor Abreu
My slrn newsreader won't connect to news.gmane.org and everytime I check
the status of that server it is apparently down. It's been happening for
weeks, probably months now. The only information I find about that
service is that it's practically discontinued.
What alternatives are there if I want to continue following some email
lists via a newsreader? I prefer the newsreader format (slrn) rather
than an email client.
Thank you in advance for any hint or help.
I can't confirm your problems. The server is alive:
|
| $ telnet news.gmane.org nntp
| Trying 195.159.176.226...
| Connected to blaine.gmane.org.
| Escape character is '^]'.
| 200 news.gmane.org InterNetNews NNRP server INN 2.5.4 ready (posting ok)
| QUIT
| 205 Bye!
Héctor Abreu
2018-05-17 18:11:46 UTC
Permalink
Post by Michael Bäuerle
Post by Héctor Abreu
My slrn newsreader won't connect to news.gmane.org and everytime I check
the status of that server it is apparently down. It's been happening for
weeks, probably months now. The only information I find about that
service is that it's practically discontinued.
What alternatives are there if I want to continue following some email
lists via a newsreader? I prefer the newsreader format (slrn) rather
than an email client.
Thank you in advance for any hint or help.
|
| $ telnet news.gmane.org nntp
| Trying 195.159.176.226...
| Connected to blaine.gmane.org.
| Escape character is '^]'.
| 200 news.gmane.org InterNetNews NNRP server INN 2.5.4 ready (posting ok)
| QUIT
| 205 Bye!
You are right, this is really confusing to me. From my end, the sites
below are telling me that news.gmane.org is down:

http://www.isitdownrightnow.com/news.gmane.org.html
http://www.websitedown.info/news.gmane.org

I guess I will need to try a different site for that.

Besides my newsreader was not connecting to news.gmane.org and I read a
lot of comments on the web about gmane not working, so I thought there
was a serious problem.

I tried the other server mentioned in your message (blaine.gmane.org).My
newsreader suddenly started to connect normally to both servers. I don't
understand what happened but the important thing is that it's working.

Thank you very much!
--
Héctor Abreu.
J.B. Nicholson
2018-05-17 22:09:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Héctor Abreu
You are right, this is really confusing to me. From my end, the sites
http://www.isitdownrightnow.com/news.gmane.org.html
http://www.websitedown.info/news.gmane.org
isitdownrightnow.com and websitedown.info test for web service
availability on well-known ports (TCP/80 for HTTP, TCP/443 for
HTTPS). Those websites probably don't test NNTP service
(TCP/119).

news.gmane.org might not be running a webservice on ports TCP/80 or
TCP/443 so news.gmane.org shows up as "down" for those website
testers. That result is simply irrelevant as it only means something
for service on the ports tested.
Post by Héctor Abreu
I guess I will need to try a different site for that.
Another poster showed you the way on that -- telnet to the NNTP port
of the server and see what you get.
Post by Héctor Abreu
I tried the other server mentioned in your message (blaine.gmane.org).My
newsreader suddenly started to connect normally to both servers. I don't
understand what happened but the important thing is that it's working.
Perhaps Gmane recently switched where news.gmane.org pointed and your
DNS server is using an old cached DNS entry for news.gmane.org?

Maybe there's a Gmane blog or newsletter that could help inform you of
recent events of a system administrative nature.
Héctor Abreu
2018-05-17 23:21:42 UTC
Permalink
Post by J.B. Nicholson
Post by Héctor Abreu
You are right, this is really confusing to me. From my end, the sites
http://www.isitdownrightnow.com/news.gmane.org.html
http://www.websitedown.info/news.gmane.org
isitdownrightnow.com and websitedown.info test for web service
availability on well-known ports (TCP/80 for HTTP, TCP/443 for
HTTPS). Those websites probably don't test NNTP service
(TCP/119).
news.gmane.org might not be running a webservice on ports TCP/80 or
TCP/443 so news.gmane.org shows up as "down" for those website
testers. That result is simply irrelevant as it only means something
for service on the ports tested.
Oh, now I understand why it was always down. Thank you for the detailed
answer.
Post by J.B. Nicholson
Post by Héctor Abreu
I guess I will need to try a different site for that.
Another poster showed you the way on that -- telnet to the NNTP port
of the server and see what you get.
You're right, sorry. I just took note and tested with telnet
news.gmane.org nntp , probably I unconsciously ignored the advise
because I am not familiar with telnet and didn't understand the command.
Post by J.B. Nicholson
Post by Héctor Abreu
I tried the other server mentioned in your message (blaine.gmane.org).My
newsreader suddenly started to connect normally to both servers. I don't
understand what happened but the important thing is that it's working.
Perhaps Gmane recently switched where news.gmane.org pointed and your
DNS server is using an old cached DNS entry for news.gmane.org?
Maybe there's a Gmane blog or newsletter that could help inform you of
recent events of a system administrative nature.
Yes, I just looked it up and now that I can connect to Gmane I can see
it. It's the gmane.discuss newsgroup.

Thank you!
--
Héctor Abreu.
Michael Bäuerle
2018-05-18 08:49:18 UTC
Permalink
Post by Héctor Abreu
Post by J.B. Nicholson
Post by Héctor Abreu
[...]
I guess I will need to try a different site for that.
Another poster showed you the way on that -- telnet to the NNTP port
of the server and see what you get.
You're right, sorry. I just took note and tested with telnet
news.gmane.org nntp , probably I unconsciously ignored the advise
because I am not familiar with telnet and didn't understand the command.
The telnet program is normally intended for login to remote machines via
network. The original protocol supported no encryption (today this is
possible via extension) and therefore ssh mostly replaced it many years
ago.

Such programs can be used to test NNTP servers because NNTP is a human
readable text protocol.

My test command was:
|
| $ telnet news.gmane.org nntp
^^^^^^ ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ ^^^^
| | |
| | +-> Service name (TCP port from /etc/services)
| +----------------> Host name (Resolved via DNS to IP address)
+-----------------------> Program name

The service name "nntp" should resolve to TCP port 119.


If you want to test for NNTPS (NNTP over TLS) the OpenSSL command
line utility can be used like this (the service name "nntps" should
resolve to TCP port 563):
|
| $ openssl s_client -connect news.gmane.org:nntps
| CONNECTED(00000005)
| [...]
| ---
| SSL handshake has read 1438 bytes and written 506 bytes
| Verification error: certificate has expired
| ---
| New, TLSv1.2, Cipher is DHE-RSA-AES256-GCM-SHA384
| [...]
| ---
| 200 news.gmane.org InterNetNews NNRP server INN 2.5.4 ready (posting ok)
| QUIT
| DONE

It works too in general, but the server certificate expired in January
(your newsreader should report an authentication error in this case).


Note:
The numbers like "200" are NNTP status codes from the server.
The "QUIT" command was typed by me via keyboard to terminate the session
as defined by the NNTP protocol:
<https://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc3977#section-5.4>
J.B. Nicholson
2018-05-17 17:48:07 UTC
Permalink
Post by Héctor Abreu
My slrn newsreader won't connect to news.gmane.org and everytime I check
the status of that server it is apparently down.
I can't reproduce this either; news.gmane.org is up and running and
works fine with slrn.

What is the exact command you're giving to start slrn and point it to
news.gmane.org?

What version of slrn are you running (output from "slrn --version")?
Héctor Abreu
2018-05-17 21:51:27 UTC
Permalink
Post by J.B. Nicholson
Post by Héctor Abreu
My slrn newsreader won't connect to news.gmane.org and everytime I check
the status of that server it is apparently down.
I can't reproduce this either; news.gmane.org is up and running and
works fine with slrn.
It's up and running, it's just that for some unknown reason my slrn
newsreader wasn't able to connect to gmane for weeks, and sites like
those below were showing me that gmane is down:

http://www.isitdownrightnow.com/news.gmane.org.html
http://www.websitedown.info/news.gmane.org

I even checked Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gmane) and found
this:
"
by February 2018 a LWN.net article observed that the web interface did
"never [...] return, breaking thousands of links across the net. The
front page still says 'some things are very broken' and links to a blog
page that was last updated in September 2016.
"

So I thought there was a serious problem, sorry if I caused a false
alarm with my interpretation. I can connect to gmane now.
Post by J.B. Nicholson
What is the exact command you're giving to start slrn and point it to
news.gmane.org?
slrn -n -h news.gmane.org -f ~/.jnewsrc-gmane

I noticed in the other reply the server blaine.gmane.org , should I use
that server as an alternative if I experience any problem with
news.gmane.org ? The latter is the only one I knew about until now.
Post by J.B. Nicholson
What version of slrn are you running (output from "slrn --version")?
1.0.2, from the Debian (actually Devuan) repositories.

Thank you very much for the follow-up.
--
Héctor Abreu.
J.B. Nicholson
2018-05-17 22:44:46 UTC
Permalink
Post by Héctor Abreu
slrn -n -h news.gmane.org -f ~/.jnewsrc-gmane
You might prefer to use snews://news.gmane.org as your host instead.
Your current connection between slrn and news.gmane.org is in the
clear, unencrypted. snews://news.gmane.org will be encrypted and keep
intermediaries (such as your ISP) from modifying data en route. Some
ISPs do this with webpages and it would be easy to do this with
netnews articles (though I know of no reports of this being done now).
I say deny them the opportunity right from the start.
Post by Héctor Abreu
I noticed in the other reply the server blaine.gmane.org , should I
use that server as an alternative if I experience any problem with
news.gmane.org ? The latter is the only one I knew about until now.
I would only recommend switching servers if you know the alternative
server uses the same article numbering base, i.e. if news.gmane.org is
merely a DNS cname (alias, for lack of a better term) for
blaine.gmane.org, or if you know that the two share the same article
spool then this switch should be okay.

In the case of a DNS cname there should be no reason one server works
while the other doesn't (except for DNS updates as I mentioned before)
since they both resolve to the same host.

If the two hosts ever resolve to different IPs, you probably would be
better off having two newsrc files, one for each server. Because the
two servers might use different article numbers for the same article
and using the same newsrc will give undesirable results (including
missing articles).
Post by Héctor Abreu
1.0.2, from the Debian (actually Devuan) repositories.
That version is out of date now but might be recent enough to work
well. Consider compiling s-lang and slrn yourself or getting slrn from
Debian's repos. Debian GNU/Linux carries 1.0.3+dfsg-1 which is current
as I type this.
Post by Héctor Abreu
Thank you very much for the follow-up.
Sure, happy to help.
a***@gmail.com
2020-01-17 03:59:24 UTC
Permalink
Hi,

The nntp service on news.gmane.org has been permanently disabled and unavailable for several days.

Does anyone know about alternatives?

Thanks,
Anton
Post by Héctor Abreu
Hi,
My slrn newsreader won't connect to news.gmane.org and everytime I check
the status of that server it is apparently down. It's been happening for
weeks, probably months now. The only information I find about that
service is that it's practically discontinued.
What alternatives are there if I want to continue following some email
lists via a newsreader? I prefer the newsreader format (slrn) rather
than an email client.
Thank you in advance for any hint or help.
--
Héctor Abreu.
😉 Good Guy 😉
2020-01-17 04:53:33 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@gmail.com
Hi,
The nntp service on news.gmane.org has been permanently disabled and unavailable for several days.
Does anyone know about alternatives?
news.gmane.io

The change is to .io from .org
--
With over 1.2 billion devices now running Windows 10, customer
satisfaction is higher than any previous version of windows.
Benjamin Esham
2020-01-17 17:44:59 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@gmail.com
Hi,
The nntp service on news.gmane.org has been permanently disabled and
unavailable for several days.
Does anyone know about alternatives?
You should be able to switch from "news.gmane.org" to "news.gmane.io" and
have things continue to work as before. (I use Gnus, and all I had to do was
to change the domain name in my gnus.el and do a batch find-and-replace of
the old domain with the new domain in my newsrc.eld file. It seems to have
been a seamless transition so far.)

The reason for the change is essentially that the Gmane maintainer lost
control of the old domain name. You can read all about it in [1], and
there's some follow-up in [2].

Hope this helps,

Benjamin


[1] https://lars.ingebrigtsen.no/2020/01/06/whatever-happened-to-news-gmane-org/

[2] https://lars.ingebrigtsen.no/2020/01/15/news-gmane-org-is-now-news-gmane-io/
--
Benjamin Esham
https://esham.io
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