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PHP Cookbook by Adam Trachtenberg, David Sklar

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17.5. Reading Usenet News Messages

Problem

You want to read Usenet news messages using NNTP to talk to a news server.

Solution

Use PHP’s IMAP extension. It also speaks NNTP:

// open a connection to the nntp server
$server = '{news.php.net/nntp:119}';
$group = 'php.general'; // main PHP mailing list
$nntp = imap_open("$server$group", '', '', OP_ANONYMOUS);

// get header
$header = imap_header($nntp, $msg);
        
// pull out fields
$subj  = $header->subject;
$from  = $header->from;
$email = $from[0]->mailbox."@".$from[0]->host;
$name  = $from[0]->personal;
$date  = date('m/d/Y h:i A', $header->udate);

// get body
$body  = nl2br(htmlspecialchars(imap_fetchbody($nntp,$msg,1)));

// close connection
imap_close($nntp);

Discussion

Reading news from a news server requires you to connect to the server and specify a group you’re interested in reading:

// open a connection to the nntp server
$server = "{news.php.net/nntp:119}";
$group = "php.general";
$nntp = imap_open("$server$group",'','',OP_ANONYMOUS);

The function imap_open( ) takes four parameters. The first specifies the news server to use and the newsgroup to read. The server here is news.php.net , the news server that mirrors all the PHP mailing lists. Add /nntp to let the IMAP extension know you’re reading news instead of mail, and specify 119 as a port; that’s typically the port reserved for NNTP. NNTP stands for Network News Transport Protocol; it’s used to communicate with news servers, just as HTTP communicates with web servers. The group ...

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