Some news servers provide free access to the public. There are more than 50K newsgroups on the Usenet (as of 2001), and most Internet service providers provide access only to a subset. Most of the common newsgroups are available from most Internet Service Providers, but you may sometimes wish to explore other groups offered by other news servers.
A number of news administrators make their news servers available to the public. They may provide this capability to make newsgroups available to people who don’t have other means of access, just for testing, or for their own independent reasons.
The following websites maintain lists of free public news servers:
- Baloc’s Public News Servers
- Newzbot.com *
- Public NNTP Sites
- Sok’s Public News Servers
- Specialized Public NNTP News Servers.
Historical free public news servers:
You can access a news server by first adding it to your news reader’s list of servers. Public news servers listed on the sites above may not always be accessible when you try them, perhaps because they were only accessible for testing. You may have to try several sites before you find one open at the time you are trying to access it.
If your regular Internet service provider doesn’t provide you with all of the groups you want, and public news servers are not an option, you may want to consider third-party commercial news servers. These provide you with access to the Usenet for a fee, and often provide other value added services.