The slrn program is a text-based newsreader program included with the Ubuntu Core distribution. It uses the ncurses package to paint text-based windows on the terminal screen. slrn can be used to both read and post articles to newsgroups on a configured news server. If you want to use the same newsreader on different platforms, slrn runs on Linux, Mac, OS2, BeOS, Windows, and VMX. It now provides true offline reading capabilities.
The slrn program is included in the slrn RPM package; you install it by using the yum or rpm command. After you have installed slrn, you need to create a local configuration file. Begin by setting an environmental variable:
$ export NNTSERVER=news.andbhudson.co.uk
Of course, you will use your own news servers' domain name. Then create your local configuration file with
$ slrn -f .jnewsrc -- create and launch slrn. The configuration file, located at /etc/slrn.rc, is a well-commented file that is easy to modify and customize.
When slrn starts, it displays a list of the groups available on the news server. You select the group you want to read articles from, and then select the individual articles. Figure 8.15 shows a slrn screen example.
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