Chapter 15 InterNetNews Server Administration

  Table of Contents

  Glossary

  Index

Using the Administration utility, you can set up your news server in the following ways:

  • You can use news as a local bulletin board; all information is local to your news server and is not propagated to the external InterNetNews (INN) network. Many Internet Service Providers (ISPs) configure news in this manner.

  • You can configure your news server to be a fed site. To receive articles from another news server, you must join the INN network and make arrangements for an external news server to feed your system. (The news server that feeds articles to your system is called an external newsfeed.)

Notes:

INN is run as a single-instance server. Only one instance of this server will be run within the cluster. The /sbin/init.d scripts use Cluster Application Availability (CAA) for this service.

To configure your server to be an external newsfeed to another system in the INN network, you must use UNIX commands on the command line; the Administration utility does not provide this capability.

The InterNetNews Administration menu offers the following news server management and configuration tasks:

  • Configure INN data—You can set or modify configuration data for the INN server (see Section : Specifying INN Configuration Data). Because this data is usually static, changes do not take effect until you reload the INN configuration files (see Section : Controlling the INN Server).

  • Configure external newsfeeds—After arranging for one or more systems on the Usenet network to feed news articles to your system, you must add the external newsfeed to your news server configuration and set up filters to process the articles you will receive from these newsfeeds. You can also remove external newsfeeds from your news server configuration. See Section : Configuring an External Newsfeed for more information.

  • Specify client access—You can control who has access to the newsgroups on your system, and whether they can read or post articles on your server (or both). See Section : Managing Client Access for more information.

  • Configure storage options—You can select different methods for storing articles. See Section : Configuring Storage Options for more information.

  • Specify article expiration—You can define the rules that specify when articles expire. See Section : Managing Article Expiration for more information.

  • Create and delete local newsgroups—You can create or delete newsgroups on your system. See Section : Managing Local Newsgroups for more information.

  • View reports and log files—You can see the contents of the standard INN server log files (news, news.crit, news.notice, and nntpsend.log) and get a report on server statistics from the innstat file. See Section : Viewing INN Log Files for more information.

  • Control the INN server—You can shut down or restart the news server or reload the server configuration files. See Section : Controlling the INN Server for more information.

To access the InterNetNews Administration menu (shown in Figure 15-1), choose Manage Components from the Administration utility Main Menu, then choose InterNetNews:

Figure 15-1 InterNetNews Administration Menu

InterNetNews Administration Menu
Note:

For information on tuning your system to improve the performance of your news server, visit the following Tru64 UNIX site:

http://h30097.www3.hp.com/internet/inn_wp.htm

INN Daemons

INN is composed of four daemons that interact with news servers on the Internet:

  • innd—The primary news server daemon that handles all incoming newsfeeds, receives all incoming news articles, files and queues all articles for distribution to other sites, waits for connections on the Network News Transfer Protocol (NNTP) port, and implements all NNTP commands. NNTP specifies the method for distribution, inquiry, retrieval, and posting of news articles. It establishes standard commands that allow news servers to share news items with other news servers, and for clients to use news readers to read and post news items to and from servers.

  • ctlinnd—Provides a front end to innd. All management of innd occurs through ctlinnd. It also handles all standard commands for adding and deleting newsgroups or shutting down the news server.

  • innxmit—Transmits news articles to other newsfeeds.

  • nnrpd—Handles all sending and receiving of news for your users' news reader programs and implements all NNTP commands (except for ihave and newnews).

For more information on InterNetNews, see the INN Web pages at http://www.isc.org/products/INN. You can also review the set of FAQs in /usr/news/doc.

Specifying INN Configuration Data

Specifying INN configuration data is optional. When you choose Modify INN Configuration Data from the InterNetNews Administration menu, the INN Configuration Data form shows the current configuration for your news server, as shown in Figure 15-2.

Figure 15-2 Configuring the INN Server

Configuring the INN Server

The fields for configuring a news server are as follows:

  • Domain—This field specifies the domain name of your system. By default, the domain name of your system is used. Enter a value in this field only if your system's host name (as stored in the HOSTNAME variable in the /etc/rc.config file) is not domain qualified.

  • From Host—This field is optional. INN uses the contents of the From Host field in the From header line of articles sent by your server to other news servers. The fully qualified name of your system is the default value for this field. The value of the FROMHOST environment variable, if defined, overrides this setting.

  • Moderator Host—By default, when an unapproved posting is made to a moderated newsgroup, the /usr/news/etc/moderators file is searched for the address of the newsgroup moderator. If this file does not exist or if a moderator could not be found, the posting will be sent to the address specified in this field.

  • Path Host—Use this field to specify the local site name to appear in the path header line of news articles sent from your server. By default, the news server uses the fully qualified name of your system as the value for Path Host. When news articles go from system to system, each site prefixes its site name to the path header line. A typical path header line looks like the following:

    sdl!newsgw.mentorg.com!uunet!gatech!barrnet.net!jfrank.com!usenet.

    INN daemons (see Section : INN Daemons) search the path header line for host names you specified to be excluded (when you configure an external newsfeed; see Section : Configuring an External Newsfeed).

  • Organization—This is an optional field that specifies the value for the Organization header of news articles sent from this server. The value of the ORGANIZATION environment variable, if defined, overrides this.

  • NNTP Server Host—This is an optional field, which contains the name of the NNTP server to which an article is posted. The value of the NNTPSERVER environment variable, if defined, overrides this setting.

After you set the configuration data, click on Submit. You must reload the INN configuration files for the changes to take effect (see Section : Controlling the INN Server).

Configuring an External Newsfeed

Before you configure an external newsfeed, you must have an agreement with the person who manages the newsfeed server, who must perform some administrative tasks on their system. Inform the newsfeed server administrator which news categories, or newsgroups, you want (or do not want) to be fed to your server. Some of the standard newsgroups are:

  • comp—Groups relating to computer science

  • sci—Groups relating to sciences other than computer science

  • news—Groups relating to the Netnews software or of general interest to all net users

  • rec—Groups relating to recreational activities

  • soc—Groups relating to social interaction or discussion of social topics

  • talk—Groups for general discussion and chat

  • humanities—Groups relating to arts and humanities

  • misc—Groups that do not fit in to any of the other categories

You need enough spool space to hold the news articles you will receive. Table 15-1 indicates the recommended minimum spool space, based on the article retention period you specify for your news server (see Section : Managing Article Expiration).

Table 15-1 Recommended Spool Space for News Articles

Article Retention PeriodMinimum Spool Space
4 days4 GB
7 days6 GB
14 days12 GB

 

It is important to have extra spool space available to handle the surges in news volume that occasionally occur (such as when an external newsfeed comes back on line after having been down for several days).

After you make arrangements with the administrator of an external newsfeed server, your system is added to the external server's configuration files. You must get a copy of the external newsfeed server's /usr/news/etc/active file. The active file is usually copied over to your server when you set up an external newsfeed. See Section : Updating the Local Active File for information on updating the active file.

The newsfeed server controls which newsgroups you receive; if you no longer want to receive articles from a newsgroup, you must notify the administrator of the newsfeed server.

The Administration utility allows you to perform the following tasks related to external newsfeeds:

Displaying an External Newsfeed

To display the external newsfeeds that have been added to your INN server, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main Menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure External Newsfeeds.

  4. From the Configure External Newsfeeds menu, choose Display External Newsfeeds.

    The Administration utility displays the default external newsfeed configuration that applies to all newsfeeds (that is, the values for Send These Newsgroups and Do Not Send These Newsgroups).

    The Display External Newsfeeds page also lists newsfeed hosts, including the dummy newsfeed (see Section : Adding an External Newsfeed), and the flags and parameters that have been set for each.

  5. To return to the Configure External Newsfeed menu, use the navigation bar at the top of the screen.

Adding an External Newsfeed

The Modify External Newsfeeds form allows you to add a new external newsfeed and specify how incoming articles are to be handled by your news server. The specifications are stored in the /usr/news/etc/newsfeeds file.

To add an external newsfeed, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure External Newsfeeds.

  4. From the Configure External Newsfeeds menu, choose Modify External Newsfeeds.

  5. In the New External Newsfeed field, enter the fully qualified name of the server from which you want to receive news articles.

  6. Click on Add. The Add External Newsfeed form is displayed.

    The host name you specify in this field is also used for writing log entries and for determining if an article is to be forwarded to a site (assuming you have configured your news server to be an external newsfeed for another news server).

    If you specify only a host name when you add a newsfeed, the Default for all Newsfeeds settings shown at the top of the Display External Newsfeeds page automatically apply (see Section : Displaying an External Newsfeed).

    Leave the New External Newsfeed field blank when:

    • You want to configure only your news server to receive input at this time and will specify a newsfeed server later. For example, you may not know the name of the external host or you may not have contacted the administrator to obtain an agreement to feed you.

      You can change these settings at a later time by choosing INN Configuration Data from the InterNetNews Administration menu.

    • You want to establish your news server as a local bulletin board, in which case you do not need to specify an external feed.

  7. On the Add External Newsfeed form, specify the following information:

    1. In the Excluded Hosts field, enter the fully qualified name of any hosts to which you explicitly do not want your server to send articles.

      The Excluded Hosts field is optional and prevents the sending of articles to a specified site, if the name in the Excluded Hosts field matches a name in the article's path header.

      As the article goes from server to server, each server prefixes its host name to the line. Usually a server uses its fully qualified domain name. Sometimes a server registers a name with the UUCP Mapping Project, which ensures that no two sites use the same name. In the example of the path header, there is a mixture of fully qualified domain names and names that are registered with the UUCP Mapping Project.

      The news server does not feed this article to any newsfeed server whose host name appears in the path header. INN uses this mechanism to prevent newsfeed servers from sending back copies of news articles they have received.

    2. This step is optional. In the Newsgroups to Propagate and Newsgroups NOT to Propagate fields, enter the newsgroups you want sent or not to be sent to your news server. The newsgroups that match the specifications in these fields constitute the subscription list for your site. Use the default subscription list to allow your news server to receive all articles from all newsgroups (except control, local.*, and junk).

      You can also use these fields to filter out articles from certain newsgroups. For example, to receive all articles from all comp newsgroups, but only the articles from the comp.sources.unix subgroup within the sources newsgroups, specify the following values:

      Send These Newsgroups: comp.*,comp.sources.unix
      
      Do NOT Send These Newsgroups: comp.sources.*

      In this example, the trailing asterisk (.*) is a required part of the pattern. Also, the result of the last match is the most important.

    3. In the Distributions field, modify a subscription that your server will be able to send. These modifications extend the modifications of Send These Newsgroups entries.

      You can modify a subscription by specifying distributions that the site can or cannot receive. The default distribution is to send all articles to all sites that subscribe to any of the newsgroups where the article has been posted. However, if an article has a distribution header with specific distributions, the specifications are checked according to the following rules:

      • If the distribution header matches any of the values in the subscription field, then the article is sent.

      • If a distribution entry starts with an exclamation point, and it matches the distribution header, then the article is not sent.

      • If the distribution header does not contain any distributions that match any distribution specifications in the site's entry form, and no negations were used, then the article is not sent. (An exclamation point negates a distribution entry.)

      • If the distribution header does not contain any distributions that match any distribution specifications in the site's entry form, then the article is sent.

      If an article has more than one entry specified in a distribution, then each one is evaluated according to these rules:

      • If any of the specified distributions indicate that the article can be sent, then it is sent.

      • If none of the specified distributions indicate that the article can be sent, then it is not sent.

      The rules are evaluated as a logical OR.

      To avoid errors in the evaluation of distribution rules, be consistent in the use of exclamation points in distribution specifications. Do not have a single feed that specifies distributions starting with an exclamation point along with some distributions with no exclamation points.

      Note that distributions are text words, not patterns. For example, avoid entries such as * or all.

      See the newsfeeds(5)reference page for details on distribution lists.

    4. This step is optional. In the Flags and Parameters field, specify flags in any order, separated by commas. Do not insert a space between the flag letter and the flag value.

      Typically, a newsfeed has the following flags set:

      Tf,Wnm:newsfeed_hostname

      T is the flag for the type of feed and f is the value for a file feed.

      W is the flag that controls what information is written. The value n causes INN to write the article's message ID to the file represented by the newsfeed_hostname file. The value m causes the INN Server to write the article's message ID. This file is found in the out.going directory. (On an AlphaServer system, the file is usually /data/spool/news/out.going/newsfeed_hostname.)

      See the newsfeeds(5) reference page for a detailed explanation of feed types.

  8. Click on Submit.

    When you submit the data on this form, the news server:

    • Stops and restarts the innd daemon

    • Sets up the feed using the Defaults for all Newsfeeds settings (see Section : Modifying Newsfeed Defaults)

    • Contacts the remote newsfeed server

    • Copies the active file from the remote newsfeed host to your server

    It may take a few minutes before the configuration of your newsfeed is complete. Depending on your access level and system usage, you may want to do this during off hours.

Modifying an External Newsfeed

To modify an existing external newsfeed, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure External Newsfeeds.

  4. Choose Modify External Newsfeeds.

  5. Select a newsfeed host from the Existing External Newsfeeds list box and click on Modify.

  6. Modify data shown on the Modify External Newsfeed form and click on Submit. For more information on the fields on this form, see Section : Adding an External Newsfeed.

Removing an External Newsfeed

To remove an existing external newsfeed, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main Menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure External Newsfeeds.

  4. From the Configure External Newsfeeds menu, choose Modify External Newsfeed.

  5. Select a newsfeed host from the Existing External Newsfeeds list box.

  6. Click on Delete. The Administration utility displays a message indicating that the newsfeed has been removed from the /usr/news/etc/newsfeeds directory.

  7. To return to the Modify External Newsfeeds menu or the InterNetNews Server Administration menu, use the navigation bar at the top of the screen.

Modifying Newsfeed Defaults

To modify the default configuration data for external newsfeeds, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main Menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure External Newsfeeds.

  4. From the Configure External Newsfeeds menu, choose Modify Newsfeed Defaults.

  5. Modify data shown on the Modify Newsfeed Defaults form and click on Submit. For more information on the fields on this form, see Section : Adding an External Newsfeed.

Updating the Local Active File

You can use the actsync utility to automatically update your news server's local active file. The actsync utility copies or merges changes from your newsfeed's active file into the active file residing on the local system.

Consider using the actsync utility if you:

  • Are setting up a news server and need an initial active file as a starting point.

  • Have not actively managed the add and remove newsgroup messages in the control newsgroup.

  • Discover lots of articles in the junk newsgroup.

  • Want to synchronize with your newsfeed.

See the actsync(8) reference page for detailed instructions on using the actsync utility. See the active(5) reference page for more information on the active file.

Managing Client Access

The Administration utility sets up the default client access pattern in the /usr/news/etc/readers.conf file to allow only hosts in the local domain to have read and post access to all newsgroups.

Note:

Prior to Version 2.3.0, InterNetNews used the /usr/news/etc/nnrp.access file to store client access information. When you install later versions of InterNetNews, nnrp.access is converted to readers.conf. See the readers.conf(5) reference page for additional information.

You can set up a client access definition for every client that will access your system. The definition consists of a host pattern (to identify the client), whether access is allowed or denied, and the newsgroups to which the client is allowed or denied access. When a client attempts to access newsgroups on your system, the news server checks the definitions, in order, to determine whether to grant or deny access to that client.

You can use wildcards in the host pattern to apply the definition to a large class of clients. For example, you can specify *.abc.com to identify all clients in the *.abc.com domain. Similarly, you can use wildcards to specify the newsgroups the clients are allowed (or not allowed) to access. For example, alt.* specifies all newsgroups in the alt category.

Choose Configure Client Access Definitions from the InterNetNews Administration menu to display the Modify Client Access Definitions menu. You can use the Modify Client Access Definitions menu to perform the following client management tasks:

Displaying Client Access Groups

To display the client access definitions that exist on your system, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Client Access.

  4. From the Configure Client Access menu, choose Display Client Access Groups.

The Administration utility shows the existing client access definitions, including host matching patterns and access type. You can use the navigation bar at the top of the page to return to the Modify Client Access Groups menu or the InterNetNews Administration menu.

Adding a Client Access Group

To add a new client access group, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Client Access.

  4. From the Configure Client Access menu, choose Modify Client Access Groups.

  5. In the New Access Group field, enter a name for the new access group.

    Click on Add to display the Add Access Groups form.

  6. For placement, pull down the list box of existing storage patterns and select the pattern that you want to precede or follow the new pattern in the list. Then click in either the Before or After selection field.

  7. Fill in the fields described in Table 15-2.

  8. Click on Submit.

Table 15-2 Access Groups Form Fields

NameDescription
PlacementIndicates the search order of the group, relative to other groups.
For users matchingThe access group of users allowed to read and post to all newsgroups specified. Users can be specified in a comma-separated list with wildcard patterns. If this parameter is not given, the access group applies to all users.
Read and Post access to

Indicates to which newsgroups the access privilege applies. The default is all newsgroups (*). The newsgroup pattern can be one of the following:

  • A specific newsgroup (for example, rec.photo)

  • A list of newsgroups, separated by commas. For example, misc.*,alt.*,comp.*. Use the asterisk (*) to indicate all newsgroups within a particular category

  • A newsgroup category or subcategory preceded by an exclamation point (!) indicates that the access privilege is not applied to that newsgroup category or subcategory. For example, the string misc.*,comp.*,!rec.photo* applies the access privilege to the misc.* and comp.* categories but does not apply the privilege to the newsgroup rec.photo and all its subcategories.

Read-only access toSpecifies newsgroups that only the client is given permission to read. The pattern for specifying newsgroups is the same as for the Read and Post access to field.
Post-only access toSpecifies newsgroups that only the client is given permission to post. The pattern for specifying newsgroups is the same as for the Read and Post access to field.
KeyIf this parameter is present, any connection matching this authentication group will have its privileges determined only by access groups containing a matching key parameter.
Masquerade asIf specified, causes nnrpd to behave as if it is running on a server with a different name.
Contact AddressSpecifies a contact e-mail address for the administrator of the InterNetNews Server.
Date in localtime?If a Date: header is not included in a posted article, nnrpd normally adds a new Date: header in UTC. If this is set to Yes, the Date: header will be formatted in local time instead. This is a boolean value and the default is No.
Path headers stripped?If set to Yes, any Path: header provided by a user in a post is stripped rather than used as the beginning of the Path: header of the article. The default value is No.
Bypass perl Filter?If set to No, posts made by these users do not pass through the Perl filter even if it is otherwise enabled. The default is Yes.
Bypass Python filter?If set to No, posts made by these users do not pass through the Python filter even if it is otherwise enabled. This is a Boolean value and the default is Yes.
 
Note:

When filling in the fields on the Access Groups menus, the order of the entries is important: The first match is the one that is applied, so enter the more restrictive entries earlier in the file than least restrictive ones.

The information you specify on the Add Client Access form is stored in the /usr/news/etc/readers.conf file, which controls reader (client) access to newsgroups. When a client connects to the server to read a newsgroup, the INN server first checks to see if that client's name is listed in /usr/news/etc/incoming.conf, the file that contains the list of newsfeed servers. If the client's address is not found on the servers list, the INN server assumes that the client is a news reader and searches the readers.conf file for the client's name and access privileges.

For more information, see the readers.conf(5) and the incoming.conf(5) reference pages.

Modifying an Existing Client Access Group

To modify an existing client access group, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Client Access.

  4. From the Configure Client Access menu, choose Modify Client Access Groups.

  5. In the Existing Access Groups list box, select a group for which you want to modify the client access definition, then click on Modify.

  6. On the Modify Client Access Groups form, you can change any of the fields. For more information on the fields on this form, see Table 15-2.

  7. Click on Submit.

    The Administration utility displays a message indicating that the client access definition has been modified.

  8. To return to the Modify Client Access Groups menu or the InterNetNews Administration menu, use the navigation bar at the top of the screen.

Removing a Client Access Group

To remove an existing client access group, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Client Access.

  4. From the Modify Client Access menu, choose Modify Client Access Groups.

  5. In the Existing Access Groups list box, select the group you want to remove.

  6. Click on Delete.

    The Administration utility displays a message indicating that the client access definition has been removed.

  7. To return to the Modify Client Access Groups menu or the InterNetNews Administration menu, use the navigation bar at the top of the screen.

Displaying Client Authentication Groups

Use the Configure Client Access menu to display authentication groups.

To display client authentication groups follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Client Access.

  4. From the Configure Client Access menu, choose Display Client Authentication Groups.

    The Display Client Access Groups page is displayed, showing all currently defined client authentication groups and the values associated with them.

Managing Client Authentication Groups

Client authentication groups allow you to identify users and group them, and in conjunction with the client access groups, control what these groups of users are permitted to do. Information is stored in the /usr/news/etc/readers.conf file.

From the Modify Client Authentication Groups menu, you can:

Adding Client Authentication Groups

Use the Configure Client Access menu to add new authentication groups. You can indicate which groups that users can be associated with, and specify what those groups are permitted to do. New information is stored in the /usr/news/etc/readers.conf file.

Table 15-3 describes the fields that appear on the Add Authentication Groups and Modify Authentication Groups menus.

Table 15-3 Client Authentication Groups Menu Fields

NameDescription
PlacementIndicates the search order of the group, relative to other groups.
HostsThe names of the hosts for which users in the group belong. This can be a comma-separated list.
Unresolved Connections identified asIf no user resolver command has been specified for this group, this value is used to identify this connection when searching for an associated Access group entry. This can be almost anything, for example "localuser". Alternatively, use the Key field. This is an optional field and can be left blank.
User Resolver CommandSpecifies the command line of a program to be executed to resolve the identity of an incoming connection. This program must be in the /usr/news/bin/auth/resolv directory. This is an optional field and can be left blank.
User Authentication CommandSpecifies the command to be executed to authenticate the user making the connection request. This program must be in the /usr/news/bin/auth/passwd directory. This is an optional field and can be left blank.
KeyA parameter used to check the identity for some specific access groups against the users: parameter.
 
Note:

When filling in the fields on the Authentication Groups menus, the order of the entries is important: The first match is the one that is applied, so enter the more restrictive entries earlier in the file than least restrictive ones.

To add a client authentication group, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Client Access.

  4. From the Configure Client Access menu, choose Modify Client Authentication Groups.

  5. In the New Authentication Group field, enter the name for a group you want to add.

  6. Click on Add. The Add Authentication Groups menu is displayed.

  7. In the list box of existing groups, click on the group that you want precede or follow the new group in the list.

  8. Click on either the Before or After selection field.

  9. In the Hosts field, enter the host name or list of hosts of the users who are controlled by this group, for example, *.myco.com.

  10. In the Unresolved Connections identified as field, enter a replacement name, for example, default@myco.com.

  11. In the User Resolver Command field, enter the full path to the command, beginning with /usr/bin/news/auth/resolv/.

  12. In the User Authentication Command field, enter the full path to the command, beginning with /usr/bin/news/auth/passwd/.

  13. In the Key field, enter the key name.

  14. Click on Submit.

Modifying Client Authentication Groups

Use the Configure Client Access menu to modify authentication groups. You can indicate which groups that users can be associated with, and specify what those groups are permitted to do. Change are stored in the /usr/news/etc/readers.conf file.

Table 15-3 describes the fields that appear on the Add Authentication Groups and Modify Authentication Groups menus.

To modify a client authentication group, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Client Access.

  4. From the Configure Client Access menu, choose Modify Client Authentication Groups.

  5. In the Existing Authentication Groups list, select the name of the group you want to modify.

  6. Click on Modify. The Modify Authentication Groups menu is displayed.

  7. In the list box of existing groups, click on the group that you want to precede or follow the new group in the list.

  8. Click on either the Before or After selection field.

  9. On the Modify Client Authentication Groups form, modify the data you want to change.

  10. Click on Submit.

Deleting Client Authentication Groups

Use the Configure Client Access menu to delete authentication groups.

To delete a client authentication group, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Client Access.

  4. From the Configure Client Access menu, choose Modify Client Authentication Groups.

  5. In the Existing Authentication Groups list, select the name of the group you want to delete.

  6. Click on Delete.

Configuring Storage Options

The InterNetNews administration uses a variety of storage methods. Using the Configure Storage Options menu, you can choose between methods for storing articles.

There are two main options:

When you use the Configure Storage Options menu, you modify the file /usr/news/etc/storage.conf. For more information, see the storage.conf(5) reference page.

Configuring Storage Method Entries

The Configure Storage Method Entries menu allows you to do the following tasks:

Displaying Storage Method Entries

To display storage method entries, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Storage Options.

  4. From the Configure Storage Options menu, choose Configure Storage Method Entries.

  5. Choose Display Storage Method Entries.

    The Display Storage Method Entries page is displayed, which shows all currently define storage method entries and their attributes.

Adding a New Storage Method Class

Table 15-4 describes the options on the Configure Storage menu.

Table 15-4 Options on the Configure Storage Menu

OptionDescription
PlacementIndicates the search order of the group, relative to other methods.
Storage TypeIndicates either tradspool, cnfs, timecaf, or trash. For a description of these types, see the storage.conf(5) reference page.
Newsgroups in this methodIndicates the categories of newsgroups that are to be stored using the method. This can be a specific newsgroup, such as rec.music.dylan, or a wildcard list, such as alt.*.
Range of article sizes for this methodIndicates the range of article sizes that should be stored using this method.
Options (only for CNFS methods)The symbolic name of a CNFS metacycbuff to be used to store articles for the specified groups. See Section : Configuring the CNFS Storage Method for more information about CNFS.
 

To add a new storage method class, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Storage Options.

  4. From the Configure Storage Options menu, choose Configure Storage Method Entries.

  5. Choose Modify Storage Method Entries.

    The Modify Storage Method Entries page is displayed. Next to New Storage Method Class is next sequential number that can be added for a method class

  6. Click on Add.

    The Add Storage Method menu is displayed.

  7. For placement, pull down the list box of existing storage patterns and select the pattern that you want to precede or follow the new pattern in the list. Then click in either the Before or After selection field.

  8. For Storage Type, click on the desired type; either tradspool, cnfs, timecaf, or trash.

  9. In the Newsgroups in this method field, enter the name of the newsgroups to be stored using this method. This can be a comma-separated list.

  10. In the Range of article sizes for this method field, enter range of article sizes.

  11. In the Options (only for CNFS methods) field, enter the name of the CNFS metacycbuff.

  12. Click on Submit.

Modifying a Storage Method Class

To modify a storage method class, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Storage Options.

  4. From the Configure Storage Options menu, choose Configure Storage Method Entries.

  5. Choose Modify Storage Method Entries.

  6. In the Existing Storage Patterns list, select the number of the storage method to be modified.

  7. Click on Modify.

    The Modify Storage Method Entries menu is displayed.

  8. Modify the fields as desired. Table 15-4 “Options on the Configure Storage Menu” describes the fields.

  9. Click on Submit.

Deleting a Storage Method Class

To delete a storage method class, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Storage Options.

  4. From the Configure Storage Options menu, choose Configure Storage Method Entries.

  5. Choose Modify Storage Method Entries.

  6. In the Existing Storage Patterns list, select the number of the storage method to be deleted.

  7. Click on Delete.

Configuring the CNFS Storage Method

The Cyclic News File System (CNFS) is a storage method which can be defined for news articles. Configuration information is stored in /usr/news/etc/cycbuff.conf. For more information, see the cycbuff.conf(5) reference page.

The Configure the CNFS Storage Method Entries menu allows you to do the following tasks:

Displaying CNFS Entries

To display CNFS entries, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Storage Options.

  4. From the Configure Storage Options menu, choose Configure the CNFS Storage Method.

  5. Choose Display CNFS Entries.

    The Display CNFS Entries page is displayed, which shows all currently defined CNFS entries.

Adding New CNFS Entries

To add new CNFS entries, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Storage Options.

  4. From the Configure Storage Options menu, choose Configure the CNFS Storage Method.

  5. Choose Modify CNFS Entries.

    The Modify CNFS Entries page is displayed.

  6. To add a new cycbuff entry:

    1. Enter a name in the New Cycbuff field.

    2. Click on Add.

      The Add Storage Method menu is displayed.

    3. In the Path to buffer field, enter the fully qualified path to the buffer in which articles will be stored, for example,/var/news/spool/bigbuff.

      Note:

      The buffer will be automatically created if it does not already exists and is the size specified.

    4. In the Size field, enter a value (in kilobytes) for the size of the buffer.

    5. Click on Submit.

  7. To add a new metacycbuff entry:

    1. Enter a name in the New Metacycbuff field.

    2. Click on Add.

      The Add Storage Method menu is displayed.

    3. Next to the Uses cycbuff entries label, select the cycbuff entry from the list to be associated with the new metacycbuff entry.

    4. Select a mode by selecting either Interleave or Sequential.

      Interleave stores articles into each cycbuff in round robin way. Sequential stores articles sequentially into one cycbuff until it is filled up.

    5. Click on Submit.

Modifying CNFS Entries

To modify CNFS entries, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Storage Options.

  4. From the Configure Storage Options menu, choose Configure the CNFS Storage Method.

  5. Choose Modify Storage Method Entries.

    The Modify CNFS Entries menu is displayed, showing the currently defined CNFS entries.

  6. To modify a cycbuff entry:

    1. Select a name in the Existing Cycbuff Entries list.

    2. Click on Modify.

      The Modify CFS Entries menu is displayed.

    3. In the Path to buffer field, enter the fully qualified path to the buffer in which articles will be stored, for example,/var/news/spool/bigbuff.

    4. In the Size field, enter a value (in kilobytes) for the size of the buffer.

    5. Click on Submit.

  7. To modify a metacycbuff entry:

    1. Select a name in the Existing Metacycbuff Entries list.

    2. Click on Modify.

      The Modify Storage Method menu is displayed.

    3. Next to the Uses cycbuff entries label, select the cycbuff entry from the list to be associated with the metacycbuff entry.

    4. Select a mode by selecting either Interleave or Sequential.

      Interleave stores articles into each cycbuff in round robin way. Sequential stores articles sequentially into one cycbuff until it is filled up.

    5. Click on Submit.

Deleting CNFS Entries

To delete CNFS entries, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Configure Storage Options.

  4. From the Configure Storage Options menu, choose Configure the CNFS Storage Method.

  5. Choose Modify Storage Method Entries.

    The Modify CNFS Entries menu is displayed, showing the currently defined CNFS entries.

  6. To delete a cycbuff entry:

    1. Select a name in the Existing Cycbuff Entries list.

    2. Click on Delete.

  7. To delete a metacycbuff entry:

    1. Select a name in the Existing Metacycbuff Entries list.

    2. Click on Delete.

Managing Article Expiration

News articles can accumulate quickly, depending on the newsgroups to which you subscribe and the amount of news traffic for that newsgroup. As a result, a significant amount of disk space can be consumed in a short time. Most news articles fed to you do not contain an expiration header, or time limit, after which the article is purged from your system.

The /usr/news/etc/history file contains a record of news articles stored in the news system, as well as those that have been received but since expired. If your InterNetNews (INN) Server finds an article being offered to you recorded in the /usr/news/etc/history file, the server determines that the article has already been offered and expires the article to avoid offering it again.

When purging an article, the expire program supplied by the INN server breaks the link to that article. For more information, see the expire(8) and the expire.ctl(5) reference pages.

Choose Modify Article Expiration Definitions from the InterNetNews Administration menu to display the Modify Article Expiration Definitions menu. You can use this menu to perform the following tasks:

Displaying Article Expiration Definitions

To see the article expiration definitions that currently exist for your INN server, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Modify Article Expiration Definitions.

  4. From the Modify Article Expiration Definitions menu, choose Display Article Expiration Definitions.

The Administration utility supplies the following default article expiration definitions:

  • All newsgroups matching *

    Articles with expiration headers are kept for a minimum of one day and a maximum of four days. Articles without expiration headers are kept for four days.

  • All newsgroups matching local.*

    Articles are kept for a minimum of one day and are retained the maximum number of days specified by the default article expiration definition (unless the article has an expiration header that causes it to be purged sooner).

  • Expired articles are kept for 20 days

To change one of these definitions, or to create a new one, see Section : Adding an Article Expiration Definition. To change the retention period for expired articles, see Section : Modifying the Retention Period for Expired Articles.

You can use the navigation bar at the top of the page to return to the Modify Article Expiration Definitions menu or the InterNetNews Administration menu.

Adding an Article Expiration Definition

To add a new article expiration definition, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Modify Article Expiration Definitions.

  4. From the Modify Article Expiration Definitions menu, choose Modify Article Expiration Definitions.

  5. On the Modify Article Expiration Definition form, specify the following:

    • Choose All, Moderated, or Unmoderated from the New Article Expiration Definition list box to apply the new article expiration definition to moderated newsgroups only, to unmoderated newsgroups only, or to all newsgroups (the default).

    • Newsgroup Pattern—Specifies the newsgroup, or newsgroups, to which the article expiration definition applies. The newsgroup pattern can be one of the following:

      • A specific newsgroup (for example, rec.photo).

      • A list of newsgroups, separated by commas. For example, misc.*,alt.*,comp.*. Use the asterisk (*) to indicate all newsgroups within a particular category.

      • A newsgroup category or subcategory preceded by an exclamation point (!) indicates that the access privilege is not applied to that newsgroup category or subcategory. For example, the string misc.*,comp.*,!rec.photo* applies the access privilege to the misc.* and comp.* categories, but does not apply the privilege to the newsgroup rec.photo and all its subcategories.

      Because the entries in a list of newsgroup patterns are interpreted in order, specify patterns from most general to most specific.

    • Click on Add. The Add Article Expiration Definition form is displayed.

    • Specify the following:

      1. Keep Articles Without Expiration Headers—If an article in a newsgroup matching the newsgroup pattern does not have an expiration header, the value in this field specifies the expiration limit (the default is two days). If you specify to keep articles indefinitely, articles without expiration dates never expire.

      2. Keep Articles With Expiration Headers—Articles with expiration headers specify a minimum and maximum number of days to keep expired articles. Use the radio buttons in this field to accept the minimum and maximum values specified in the expiration header, or to override either or both values.

      3. Flush Article With Expiration Headers—Articles with expiration headers specify a minimum and maximum number of days to keep expired articles. Use the radio buttons in this field to accept the minimum and maximum values specified in the expiration header, or to override either or both values.

      In Figure 15-3, expired articles will not be kept (0 days) after the date specified in the article's expiration header.

      Figure 15-3 Specifying an Article Expiration Definition

      Specifying an Article Expiration Definition
  6. Click on Submit.

    The Administration utility displays a message indicating that the article expiration definition has been added. You can use the navigation bar at the top of the page to return to the Modify Article Expiration Definitions menu or the InterNetNews Administration menu.

Modifying an Article Expiration Definition

To modify an existing article expiration definition, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Modify Article Expiration Definitions.

  4. Choose Modify Article Expiration Definitions.

  5. In the Existing Article Expiration Definitions list box, select a news pattern for which you want to modify the article expiration definition, then click on Modify.

  6. Modify any or all fields on the Modify Article Expiration Definition form. For more information on the fields on this form, see Section : Adding an Article Expiration Definition.

  7. Click on Submit.

    The Administration utility displays a message indicating that the article expiration definition has been modified. You can use the navigation bar at the top of the page to return to the Modify Article Expiration Definitions menu or the InterNetNews Administration menu.

Deleting an Article Expiration Definition

To delete an existing article expiration definition, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Modify Article Expiration Definitions.

  4. In the Existing Article Expiration Definitions list box, select a news pattern for which you want to remove the article expiration definition, and then click on Delete.

  5. Click on Submit.

    The Administration utility displays a message indicating that the article expiration definition has been deleted. You can use the navigation bar at the top of the page to return to the Modify Article Expiration Definitions menu or the InterNetNews Administration menu.

Modifying the Retention Period for Expired Articles

To modify the retention period for expired articles, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Modify Article Expiration Definitions.

  4. From the Modify Article Expiration Definitions menu, choose Modify the Retention Period for Expired Articles.

  5. Specify the number of days you want to keep expired articles.

  6. Click on Submit.

    The Administration utility displays a message indicating that the value of the Remember parameter in the /usr/news/etc/expire.ctl file has been successfully updated. You can use the navigation bar at the top of the page to return to the Modify Article Expiration Definitions menu or the InterNetNews Administration menu.

Managing Local Newsgroups

A local newsgroup organizes articles at your site that are not intended to be read by the wider Internet community. Local newsgroups are designated by the local.category. Internet Express is configured not to send any local.* newsgroups outside the local user environment. The InterNetNews Administration menu offers the following tasks for managing local newsgroups:

Creating Local Newsgroups

To create a local newsgroup, choose Add/Delete Local Newsgroups from the InterNetNews Administration menu. The Add/Delete Local Newsgroups form shows the existing local newsgroups (if any) and provides a field where you can enter the name of a new local newsgroup.

When you create a local newsgroup, use the prefix local. to exclude it from external newsgroups. Choose a name that describes the purpose or content of the information offered by the newsgroup (for example, local.org.research). Do not use spaces in newsgroup names.

The Administration utility does not support the creation of external newsgroups. To create a newsgroup that can be accessed by other systems on the INN network, you must use UNIX commands on the command line. Chapter 2 provides URLs for Web sites that offer more information on INN.

Deleting Local Newsgroups

To delete a local newsgroup, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Add/Delete Local Newsgroups.

  4. In the Existing Local Newsgroups list box, choose the newsgroups you want to delete.

  5. Click on Delete.

    The Administration utility displays a message indicating that the selected newsgroups were deleted. You can use the navigation bar at the top of the page to return to the InterNetNews Administration menu.

Viewing INN Log Files

To examine INN server log files, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose View Reports and Log Files.

  4. On the View Reports and Log Files menu, choose one of the following:

    • View news Log File—Displays the date and time news articles were sent, whether the article was accepted or rejected, the host machine that sent the article, and the article's message-id.

    • View news.crit Log File—Displays any critical error messages, including the date and time of the error, and the host machine where the error occurred.

    • View news.notice Log File—Displays batch file transfers, which provide information on articles fed downstream and changes to the status of innd.

    • View nntpsend.log Log File—Displays information on innxmit, which provides insight into the transmission of news articles to other newsfeeds.

    • Display innstat Information—An executable program that displays current statistics on the INN server, including current server status, disk usage and the percentage of disk space available, batch and log file sizes, lock files, and current server connections.

The entries in these log files are generated from data in the /usr/news/etc/log directories.

Use the navigation buttons to page through the report or to go to the beginning or end of the report. To return to the View Reports and Log Files form, use the navigation bar at the top of the screen.

Controlling the INN Server

To control the INN server, follow these steps:

  1. From the Administration utility Main menu, choose Manage Components.

  2. On the Manage Components menu, choose InterNetNews.

  3. From the InterNetNews Administration menu, choose Start/Stop the INN Server.

  4. Depending on the current status of the INN server (shown at the top of the page), you can select the following:

    • Stop the INN server—Available when the current status is running. When you click on Stop, the INN server is immediately stopped.

    • Start the INN server—Available when the current status is stopped. When you click on Start, the INN server is immediately restarted and the configuration files are reloaded.

    • Restart the INN server—When you click on Restart, the INN server is restarted after one minute.

    • Reload the INN configuration files—When you click on Reload, the INN configuration files are immediately reloaded.

      Use this function whenever you modify INN configuration data (see Section : Specifying INN Configuration Data).