Newsreaders and Windows 7

I have been trying to access a few Excel Newsgroups and I think there may be a delay in the answering of my questions.  This may or may not be because I am accessing the sites directly through a web browser.  As of a couple of years ago a newsreader, as I understand it, was the preferred way of communicating with forums or news group.

I am using Windows 7 and Office 2007.  I see no references anymore to Outlook Express.  Should I be using a newsreader and if yes, what should I be using.  What is preferred these days.
WoodrowAAsked:
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MightySWCommented:
Hi, google reader is my choice.

You can also use outlook 2007 for RSS feeds under the RSS feeds folder.  

HTH
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WoodrowAAuthor Commented:
How does Google reader relate to UseNet?  Google Reader does not appear to be taylored for this kind of thing.
Am I correct in my belief that I may be getting responses late because I am asking questions directly from a user group web site.  If so, why is this?
 
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MightySWCommented:
Google has many more apps and resources that UseNet could ever dream of.  Plus google is now entering into direct competition with facebook with their Buzz and new WAVE technology.  Google will soon rule the entire world with their endless budget.  If you are talking about sources, then Google is by far the best place to search for news groups, and allocate with their reader or other RSS services or google groups.  Groups can be subscribed to and google reader can be used to parse them or other readers like Outlook 2007's reader.

http://www.google.com/support/news/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=59255
Look on the right for recommended articles.

http://groups.google.com/   For UseNet articles

Here is a good article (a bit dated as google reader has changed)
http://www.shokk.com/blog/articles/2005/10/10/google-reader-vs-feed-on-feeds/

Personally I like having the flexiblitliy of google reader and google groups in an all in on package and being able to post to my google groups and seeing the content from my twitter and FB accounts in real time all with one reader interface.  This way I can just post to my groups or subscribe to usenet feeds, etc.


Cheers.
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BitsBytesandMoreCommented:
I've used for years Agent and I still love it. Haven't found a better one. One of the things I like most of it is that it handles everything including encrypted attachments...
http://www.forteinc.com/agent/
Bits ....
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BitsBytesandMoreCommented:
Here is a nice list for you to compare:
http://www.newsgroupservers.net/usenet-newsgroup-reader
Bits ...
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WoodrowAAuthor Commented:
BitsBytesandMore:
Thank you for responding.  It is not clear to me why I really need a news reader.  Most of the forums I go to provide their own interface.  In fact, all of them do.  But some reccomend they be accessed through a news reader.  There are not many that I visit that do, but some do.  What is the advantage.  I mean other than a little better organization?
The only reason I personally may want to use a newreader of the Web site itself is because it has been implied that I can get a responce more quickly if I do.  Is this true?
Thank you again for your input.
 
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BitsBytesandMoreCommented:
As explained in the link I provided above, there are two ways to access files and messages on Usenet.  The first is through a web interface, the second is by using a program that connects to the server at a more direct level and provides more flexibility and control.
The typical web-based usenet newsreader acts much like a PC based reader, except it includes very few automation features.  Some of the sites with online newsreaders allow you to select a number of images from a list and have them grouped into a ZIP file that you can download easily, but most simply display a list of the message headers, let you click on them, and display the content.
Web readers are quite limited: it doesn't always combine files correctly or understand compression formats, it doesn't allow for any kind of automated download, its searching is weak, and you have little control over its binary options.  To get these functions (and if you plan to download binaries very often, you will see how quickly they become necessary), you must install a dedicated newsreader program.
Just to keep this explanation simple, you probably have used Microsoft Outlook to download your emails. You've also probably had a chance to see your email through a web browser if you have a hotmail, yahoo, google or other webmail account. A dedicated newsreader is very much like comparing using Outllook for email to using webmail for email... the dedicated newsread just has so much many features....
I hope this helps...
Bits ....
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WoodrowAAuthor Commented:
I undestand what your saying but in my case the number of instance where I need a newsreader are limited.  The only reason I can think of for using a news reader (given the few site I frequent where one is an opion.  I say, the only reason I can think of for me using one is the matter of speed.  I guess I am asking a compound question.  1, what are the newsreaders that are popular, and 2, will I see answers to my questions substantially quicker by using a newsreader, as opposed to the web site.
Thank you again for your help.
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BitsBytesandMoreCommented:
WoodrowA,
1. The most popular newsreader is Free Agent.... (the link above expains the pros and cons of all of them).... did you read it?
2. You will not see your answers quicker.... just different. It's like an email... you can either see it online or download it to your computer to read and view later.
Bits ...
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WoodrowAAuthor Commented:
BitsBytesAndMore,
Yes , I did read it, and one of the things it says is that Free Agent is no longer available.
>You will not see your answers quicker....
This is really all I was asking and that's what I wanted to know.  Thank you.  
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WoodrowAAuthor Commented:
Thank you
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BitsBytesandMoreCommented:
Yes... I was aware that unfortunately they retired it. For those that still have a copy... they love it. It still is the most popular one and you can still find it in some groups...
I, personally, like to buy the software. It gives me the good feeling that I'm helping out... Kind of like putting my grain of sand.
You can still download the trial if you wish to test it. You will really like it.
I wasn't being cynical when I asked you if you had read it... I just wanted to know if you had understood it. It's the problem with text that sometimes, you don't realize that something might come across as rude if you do not add an emoticon ... I apologize if it came across the wrong way :)
Thanks for the feedback and points...
Bits ...
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MightySWCommented:
yes, thanks for the points.
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WoodrowAAuthor Commented:
Not a problem.  Best Regards - Woody
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