Blog
News, Notes, and Items of Interest
Black Friday 2021
How about a yummy helping of Usenet to go with your dinner?  Posted on Nov 26, 2021 12:00 -0400

We hope everyone is lucky enough to have the day off and you get to spend time with your loved ones.

We’d like to thank our existing customers that made UsenetExpress possible and welcome anyone new to our family with a few Black Friday deals!

We’re offering our 2 years of unlimited access for $50

Coupon code BF50FOR2

2 years unlimited for $50

6 months of unlimited access for $15.

Coupon code BF6UNL15

6mo unlimited for $15

Great deal on block accounts also!

Coupon code BFBLOCKS

500G block for $5

If you purchase 3 of the blocks, shoot support an email and we’ll add a 4th for free.

Expanded IHAVE
Announcing expanded IHAVE  Posted on Oct 15, 2021 12:00 UTC

Soon after starting UsenetExpress we were asked if we could implement the ability for end users to post old(er) articles that were not on our new spools. The original poster of the articles wanted to “repost” them using the same message-ids so that they didn’t take up twice the space on providers that already had the articles from the original post. Since the POST NNTP command limits how old the Date: header can be it wouldn’t allow them to post with the original headers. After mulling over possible solutions we decided to implement IHAVE at the end user level.

IHAVE has historically been used by usenet backbones to exchange articles. As the usenet feed volume grew over the years it has mostly been replaced with CHECK/TAKETHIS. Repurposing IHAVE seemed like an elegant solution that has been working well for a few years. It was recently brought to our attention that we never publicly announced the feature. A news reader/client developer noticed it listed in our NNTP ‘HELP’ output while debugging their application. After we explained it’s use case they were pretty excited about the possibilities and mentioned we should consider making it more well known. We’ll release some example code over the next few weeks to give a better technical example. If you’re a developer and would like more information sooner, feel free to shoot support a quick email.

Independence Day Special
4th of July special  Posted on Jul 1, 2021 12:00 -0400

The 4th of July is the perfect opportunity to offer up some deals on your favorite independent Usenet provider.

Coupon code 5for500

500GB Non-Expiring Block for $5

Coupon code 6for18

Six Months Unlimited Access for $18

Coupon code 12for35

Twelve Months Unlimited Access for $35

These coupon are only good for a few days so grab one (or more) while you can!

IPv6 deployed in the US
About time eh?  Posted on Dec 6, 2020 11:00 -0400

We’re happy to announce that IPv6 server addresses have added to our US location. A few recently reported speed issues were tracked back to the user’s service provider IPv6->IPv4 gateway. Anyone that is accessing our service over IPv6 will probably see a significant bump in speed since your traffic will no longer flow via these gateways. We’ve already seen about 15% of our traffic shift over to the IPv6 address and expect a bit more once DNS fully propagates. Please message support if you have any odd issues and you’re on IPv6.

We’re working on EU and expect to have it finished this evening or early Monday.

NVMe spool set
How fast do you wanna go?  Posted on Dec 2, 2020 12:00 -0400

We had a new partner planning to use our backbone early December and needed to handle a decent traffic increase. We didn’t expect any issues with our existing infrastructure but wanted to ensure that we could handle the additional load. While researching solutions we found it fascinating that article age metrics are so skewed towards very new articles. It makes sense if you think about it. The news cycle is quick these days. Most people prefer new news over old news.

Below is a snapshot of age metrics we generated from backend spool i/o stats.

article_age_graph

We have a massive amount of articles going back many years, but the graph clearly shows that a large percentage (40%+) of the articles read are less than 7d old. Working with the assumption that our new partner would have a similar usage pattern, we decided to deploy a shallow NVMe spool set in front of our normal HDD (7200rpm SAS) cluster.