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Old 09-18-2015, 10:48 PM   #1
Seff
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What are Mailspools and Newsgroups?


When I clicked on a mail-to link, Thunderbird opened and asked whether I want to use a Unix Mailspool or a Newsgroup account. What are they? I've no objection to either one, but it would be nice to know what makes them different from regular email providers.
Thanks in advance.
 
Old 09-18-2015, 11:17 PM   #2
frankbell
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I've used Thunderbird from time to time and not seen that message.

A "mailspool" is how email is historically delivered. It is said to "spool," as a tickertape, in terms dating from the early days of networked computers. In a typical Unix/Linux system using a text email client such as Mutt, your primary mailbox will be located in /var/spool/mail. (You will also find references to "spoolfiles" in early printer documentation--my heavens, I've been doing this stuff for a long time!)

I did a quick web search as to why you might have gotten that message. Most of the links seemed to indicate that you need to configure a POP3 or IMAP account in Thunderbird. If you do a search for "thunderbird mail spool," you should find something useful. I'm not offering a link because, frankly, there are too many variables that are unknown to me.

Newsgroups, also known as Usenet, are the second oldest part of the internet after email. Wikipedia has a pretty good article on Usenet: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Usenet

Newsgroups still exist, but much of the activity that used to take place on newsgroups has migrated to forums (and the world is a sadder place in consequence--if you've never been flamed on Usenet, you don't have an inkling of what being flamed can be).

When I was first using the internet, Usenet was the place to be; I still lurk there from time to time.

Afterthought:

I must be getting old.

Last edited by frankbell; 09-18-2015 at 11:33 PM.
 
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Old 09-18-2015, 11:43 PM   #3
Seff
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Thank you, frankbell. I'll have a look at those links, but most likely tomorrow.

I grew up in the '90s, so I guess I just missed the Usenet era. Too bad...
 
Old 09-18-2015, 11:58 PM   #4
frankbell
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Quote:
so I guess I just missed the Usenet era. Too bad.
It is indeed too bad. Usenet is/was a wild and wooly place.

I've been flamed on alt.folklore.urban, which is now but a shadow of its former self, but, in its time, it did most absolutely rock; AFU, by the way, gave birth to Snopes. I can still flame with the best, but that skill is not needed on LQ . . . .
 
  


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