If you are already familiar with internet newsgroups/newsreaders then please read this instead.
If anything here is unclear to you, and/or you would like to see a graphical representation of the key steps, then take a look at this flow chart.
Q1. What is the gmane.comp.misc.freeware newsgroup/web forum ?.
It is a newsgroup/web forum that discusses freeware. Currently restricting subscriptions while in "beta" testing.
It is a mailing list archive. But one reads/posts messages to it using a newsreader and/or a web browser and/or a web forum reader. One needs to be "authorised" to post before posting.
To see how they differ, (in order to better decide for yourself which of the three access methods most suites you), go to our"Reading/Posting Options" page here. Be sure to finish reading this (current) page before following the access method (instructions) you preferred, there.
Q2. Why create these forums ?
To help reduce the number of "spam", "flames", and "off topic", posts that are often found in freeware discussion elsewhere.,
Q3. But couldn't people join and then spam etc. ?
Certainly, but if people do that then they can be blocked from future posting.
Yes, but you don't even need to subscribe to see existing messages though. Just go to http://aspects.org.au/forum/ using a web browser.
Once that is done decide which one of the three options (Q1.) you are going to use to read/reply to messages.
Follow the setup steps required for the choice you just made. Before doing that though be sure to finish reading this page first.
Q6. Okay, so how do I get "authorised" ?
Go to http://aspects.org.au/mailman/listinfo/freewarelist_aspects.org.au and subscribe. Though this is an emailing list subscription you will not be receiving emails. It is purely a method to restrict access to the newsgroup.
[At some time in the future newsgroup posts may be mirrored to an active mailing list. Also, posts are archived. So you may want to use an emailing address that, if seen publicly, wouldn't matter. Some people may want to setup a special email address for this.]
If you don't want to use your private email address, and you don't have a spare one to use, then you can create an email address for Gmane by going to somewhere like Google, or following the instructions for Yahoo here. Or contact me for further options.
To help avoid spammers, newsgroup posts address' are currently encrypted.
Q7. What next ?
Your subscription is approved or denied. Depending on what time of the day it is (in Australia) this can take from minutes to hours. If approved you then get a "confirmation" email saying that you are a member.
N.B. If you subscribed with an email address, that is different than the one that you normally use we suggest that you test it first. Send an email to yourself at the "new" email address and then make sure that it arrives okay. Also, don't forget to look in this "other" email mailbox for your subscription "confirmation" email and your "authorisation" email 9 (i).
Q8 Do I need a username/password to post ?
If you are using a newsreader, then "no". Just make sure that you post to the newsgroup using your subscription info. In other words if you subscribe with a me@home account then don't post from a me@work account. Otherwise, you need to get a username/password from me.
Gmane doesn't know that you did (6) so, after your very first post is sent..
Q9 (i) You get an email titled "gmane.comp.misc.freeware: Authorization required" asking you to "reply" in order to post to the list.
If you don't think you got it then don't forget the note above. Look in your "other" mailbox.
Q9 (ii) Reply to this email "as is". You don't need to add/subtract/alter anything in the email. Just hit your "Reply to" button and then "send". You only need do this once per account. Once done, subsequent newsgroup posts from the same account will not trigger this authorization email again.
Q9 (iii) You then receive a new email titled.
"Subject: Re: Authorization required to post to gmane.comp.misc.freeware " which says...
You are now authorized to post to the gmane.comp.misc.freeware newsgroup.
The original message you sent to the newsgroup/web forum will be posted to both within ten minutes.
Q10. Why provide web forum access as well as a newsreader newsgroup ?
(A) Some people prefer a web forum for freeware discussion.
(B) Some people prefer a newsgroup for freeware discussion.
(B) Some people like to have both for freeware discussion.
All three are now available. IMO that is better than only offering people one option.
Q11. Why would anyone want both ?
A number of reasons. For example, some people are allowed internet access before, or after, work. Or during their lunch break. If they aren't allowed to install a newsreader then they may like to post via a web browser, then use their own newsreader when they get home.
Also, being able to read/post via a browser is handy if visiting an internet cafe and/or when at someone else's place.
Q12. Are there any "rules" ?
Yes, the TERMS AND CONDITIONS :
It is a condition of your subscription that you..
Not make personal attacks on others.
Not say/do things that could encourage conflicts/flame wars etc,.
To facilitate the first item crossposting is not allowed, as crossposting of long threads often results in posts that are "off topic" in one/more of the newsgroups posted to.
Also, as some/all of the posters in the "other" newsgroup(s) may not be authorised to post to this newsgroup one would probably end up with missing posts due to the un-authorised postings not being accepted.
Q13. What if I don't want to comply with these rules ?
Then don't bother with this newsgroup. It clearly isn't for you. If one chooses to ignore what is said above then the administrator can make every post you make a "moderated" post, or simply deny you access without notice.
Q14. I haven't received any confirmation email from the list and/or posting authorisation request email from Gmane. What should I do ?
(A) Please make sure that you didn't overlook the N.B. note at 9 (ii).
(B) Also, some people have a "Challenge - Response" system setup so that they don't receive emails unless the poster has gone to a web page and done something.
As the Gmane notice is automated that won't be done. You may need to look in your/your ISPs "spam" or "non verified emails" folder to find their email.
(C) Make sure that you have looked in your own "spam", and/or "trash" folders, on your own computer . You may have a filter that moved them there, or to the wrong folder. Some emailers have a "filter report" that tells you which folders email goes into. Check them all !
(D) If using a newsreader then check your From : address. Is it exactly the same as you subscribed with in (6) ? One person with an account like firstname.lastname@example.org wondered why he got no return emails. He had put his address as email@example.com in his newsreader.
(E) If you have done (A) to (D) and still not had success then the problem may be in getting emails back to the address that you used. Consider using an email address that goes to a different domain eg. if firstname.lastname@example.org doesn't work then try email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
If (A) to (E) doesn't work then contact me .
Q15. I followed the steps above, and replied to both emails, but my post hasn't shown up in the newsgroup.
Occasionally there may be a delay. On rare occasions the delay may be hours. This is usually due to maintenance being done on the Gmane server. If you have waited for hours and you still cannot see your post then either wait a bit longer, or contact me.
John Fitzsimons 30/1/2011.