14. Documentation, information and further reading

This section fills in gaps which were hard to classify under any of the previous chapters.

14.1. The manpages

The following manpages are installed automatically when our integrated software distribution is compiled and installed, listed here in no particular order:

14.2. Papers, documents, articles

There are certain documents and published conference papers which are a must-read for Usenet server administrators, both for their historical value and for the insight they give into Usenet server architecture in general. We list our chart-toppers here.

14.2.1. The Usenix paper on C News

This very interesting paper has been mentioned in the section titled "Usenet software: a historical perspective>". It is titled ``News Need Not Be Slow'', and is available from ftp://ftp.cs.toronto.edu/doc/programming/c-news.* or from our Website (http://www.starcomsoftware.com/proj/usenet/doc/c-news.{ps,pdf}).

It focuses on B News, analyses it for performance, and demonstrates how specific changes in design and implementation can speed things up. It is well-written, and is educative in many areas independent of Usenet news.

14.3. O'Reilly's books on Usenet news

O'Reilly and Associates had an excellent book that can form the foundations for understanding C-News and Usenet news in general, titled ``Managing UUCP and Usenet,'' dated 1992. This was considered a bit dated because it did not cover INN or the Internet protocols.

They have subsequently published a more recent book, titled ``Managing Usenet,'' written by Henry Spencer, the co-author of C-News, and David Lawrence, one of the most respected Usenet veterans and administrators today. The book was published in 1998 and includes both C-News and INN.

We have a distinct preference for books published by O'Reilly; we usually find them the best books on their subjects. We make no attempts to hide this bias. We recommend both books. In fact, we believe that there is very little of value in this HOWTO for someone who studies one of these books and then peruses information on the Internet.

14.4. Usenet-related RFCs


14.5. The source code


14.6. Usenet newsgroups

There are many discussion groups on the Usenet dedicated to the technical and non-technical issues in managing a Usenet server and service. These are:


14.7. We

We, at Starcom Software, offer the services of our Usenet news team to provide assistance to you by email, as a service to the Linux and Usenet administrator community, on a best effort basis.

We also offer you an integrated source distribution of C News, NNTPd, as discussed earlier in the section titled "Setting up C News + NNTPd>". This integrated source distribution fixes some bugs in the component packages it includes, and it comes pre-configured with ready made configuration files which allow all components to be compiled and installed on a Linux server in a manner by which they can work together (e.g. key directory paths are specified consistently across all components, etc.) This is available at http://www.starcomsoftware.com/proj/usenet/src/

The URL http://www.starcomsoftware.com/proj/usenet/src/archives/ holds the original sources of some of the software components we base our distribution on. These include C News (c-news.tar.Z), NNTPd (nntp., and Nestor (nestor.tar.Z). Other components, like pgpverify are maintained by their current maintainers and can be obtained from their respective sites. Therefore, they are not included in our archives.

The URL http://www.starcomsoftware.com/proj/usenet/doc/ carries copies of some of the important technical articles and Usenix papers on the subject of the Usenet.

We will endeavour to answer all queries sent to usenet@starcomsoftware.com, pertaining to the source distribution we have put together and its configuration and maintenance, and also pertaining to general technical issues related to running a Usenet news service off a Unix or Linux server.

We may not be in a position to assist with software components we are not familiar with, e.g. Leafnode, or platforms we do not have access to, e.g. SGI IRIX. Intel Linux will be supported as long as our group is alive; our entire office runs on Linux servers and diskless Linux desktops.

You are not forced to be dependent on us, because neither do we have proprietary knowledge nor proprietary closed-source software. All the extensions we are currently involved in with C-News and NNTPd will immediately be made available to the Internet in freely redistributable source form.