|Netscape Navigator Tips and Tricks|
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NEW NEWS IS GOOD NEWS
Most Netscape Navigator users have access to only one news server, which
is the one entered as the default news server in the Mail and News Preferences
dialog box. (Select Options|Mail and News Preferences, then click the Servers
tab.) It is possible, however, to have access to several news servers.
If this is the case, Navigator allows you to open an alternate news server
without having to monkey around with the Preferences settings. To do this,
open the News window and select File|Open News Host from the menu. Next
enter the new news server's name in the "Open News Host" dialog box that
appears. You're now in business with the new news.
KEEPING THE NEWS
Netscape Navigator's mail and news facilities are very similar, and
actually look very much alike. There are, however, important differences
in the way each handles incoming messages, or articles in the case of the
news facility. Essentially, you can automatically store received e-mail
messages on your local hard disk or leave them on a server, while news
articles are always stored on the server. You can see them displayed on
your computer when you access the server online, but you must save anything
you want to keep yourself. The easiest way to do this is to select the
article(s) that you want to save (while you're in the News window), then
choose File|Save Message(s) As. In the dialog box, choose the folder where
you want to save it (them) and name the file. Click "Save" and you're all
set. Actually, it's usually good policy to save a bunch of articles at
once to be read later, when you're disconnected from the 'Net.
As we saw in yesterday's tip, Netscape Navigator doesn't automatically
save the articles you read in newsgroups. You can, however, automatically
save anything you post to a newsgroup. (A good idea if you want to protect
yourself from being misquoted!) There are actually a couple of saving options.
You can email a copy to yourself, add the posting to a running text file,
or both. These options are set in the Mail and News Preferences box. To
set them, select Options|Mail and News Preferences, then click the Composition
tab. If you want to mail a copy to yourself, enter your e-mail address
in the News Messages field of the "By default, email a copy of outgoing
message to:" option. If you want to save the article to a text file on
your hard disk, enter the full path and file name in the News File field
of the "By default, copy outgoing message to the file:" option. If you
want to do both, enter that info in both. When you're done, click OK to
close the box and save your settings.
GROOVY THREADS, MAN
A thread is, of course, a series of newsgroup articles that relate to
the same topic. This is a convenient way to read everything posted about
a particular topic, but be aware that Netscape Navigator does not thread
automatically. However, it does give you the ability to thread articles
and set sorting criteria. If you don't turn on the threading option, Navigator
lists all articles in the order they were received, which could get quite
confusing. To set the threading and sorting, select Options|Mail and News
Preferences, then click the Organization tab. To thread, click the Thread
News Messages option. Now select a Sorting option. Because you have chosen
to thread the articles (you can sort without threading, actually), it's
probably better to choose Subject here. Click OK to close the box and save
DON'T READ `EM OR WEEP
It's pretty common to come across newsgroup threads that don't interest
you at all. In these cases, you probably don't want or need the thread's
article headers cluttering up the news window. To take care of this, mark
the thread as having been read. Select the top article in the thread and
click Thread on the menu bar. All articles are marked "read." You can do
the same thing for the entire newsgroup if you want. In this instance,
select the newsgroup in question and click Group on the menu bar.
FLAG ON THE PLAY
Browsing through a newsgroup list of articles can be like leafing through a magazine. You don't always read everything you want at first, but sometimes make a mental (or physical) note about ones that interest you, and that you want to get back to. You can do the same thing in Netscape Navigator News by "flagging" the articles that interest you, then accessing them later. To do this, click the flag column in the same row as the article that you want to flag. True to form, a little flag icon appears in the column. Now, when you want to go back to the flagged articles, you can easily scroll between them (because many will be out of the window).Here's how: Select Go from the Navigator News menu, then select the appropriate option (First Flagged, Next Flagged, or Previous Flagged).
SNEWS, YOU DON'T LOSE
Usenet news sites can also be on SSL secure servers. The URL for a secure
news site begins with "snews:" rather than the standard "news:".
Ever wonder how you can search for particular newsgroups in Netscape Navigator? Well, you can't! Not directly from Navigator anyway. There are some free third-party search engines available, however. Here are some sites for these:
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