Reading Newsgroups

Newsgroups are Internet bulletin boards. There are over 30,000 of them, on every conceivable topic: pop culture, computers, politics, and every other special (and very special) interest. You can use Outlook Express to read and reply to these messages almost exactly as though they're email messages.

Setting Up a News Account

To set up Outlook Express for reading newsgroups, choose ToolsAccounts, then click the News tab. When you click AddNews, you'll be launched into a newsgroup-specific version of the Internet Connection Wizard. You'll be asked for the name you want to use when posting messages (usually your real name), the email address you want stamped on your newsgroup postings (see Section 12.5.4 for some antispam techniques), and your news server information—an address (provided by your ISP or network administrator) that tells Outlook Express how to connect to the Internet's newsgroups.

When you click Close, Outlook Express offers to download the entire list of newsgroups (Figure 12-13, top). If you click Yes, your PC connects to the Internet and downloads the complete list of newsgroup names—all 30,000 of them. (If you connect by modem, this process takes a minute or two, as you can imagine.) As shown in Figure 12-13 (bottom), you wind up in the Newsgroup Subscriptions dialog box, where the complete list awaits your perusal.

Top: After you create a newsgroup account, Outlook Express offers to fetch the list of every newsgroup on the Internet. Bottom: In the box, enter the text you want to look for in the newsgroup's title (such as windows 2000, as shown here). If you turn up an appealing-sounding topic in the gigantic list beneath, double-click its name to subscribe to it, so that Outlook Express will download the latest messages on that topic each time you connect.

Figure 12-13.  Top: After you create ...

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