Troubleshooter--NNTP Newsgroups

How can I import a list of Network News Transfer Protocol (NNTP) newsgroups to my Exchange 2000 Server machine?

In NNTP parlance, an active file is a list of newsgroups that a particular server carries. In Exchange Server 5.x, you can copy your NNTP provider's active file, edit the file to remove groups you don't want, and save the edited file as active.lst. Then, the Exchange Internet News Server (INS) happily starts pulling the specified groups. However, the Exchange 2000 NNTP service has a flaw that causes it to ignore the active.lst file. Ordinarily, this deficit would doom you to creating each newsgroup by hand, which is a big pain. Instead, you can use the little-known rgroup.vbs script installed in %systemroot%\system32\inetsrv\ to create or remove newsgroups in bulk.

To import a list of newsgroups (and create the necessary folder structures along the way), create a text file that contains the newsgroups you want to carry, each on a separate line. This file will serve as an input file for rgroup.vbs. As Figure 1 shows, put 215 start on the first line, followed by each newsgroup on a separate line. Save this file under a filename such as local-groups.txt. The first line of the file must contain 215 start. When you run rgroup.vbs, you need to use the -t I and -a switches. By putting the letter I after the -t switch, you're telling the script to import the contents of the input file that you've specified with the -a switch. For example, the command

rgroup.vbs -t I -a c:\temp\local-groups.txt

tells the script to import the contents of the local-groups.txt file. For more information about configuring and using NNTP, see Joseph Neubauer, "Network News Transfer Protocol," August 2001.

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