Want to try out Usenet for free?

Many people would like free Usenet access, to save at least $10 a month on a paid subscription with a Newsgroup provider.

It is technically possible to access newsgroups and never have to pay. You just need to choose an ISP that offers usenet access included with internet. Or connect to a server that allows free and unlimited access (although it might be partial or restricted). Finally if these connections are impossible, there are always free trial periods as a last resort.

=> Don’t expect miracles from free servers!
=> A selection of different free offers will stop you from the getting the best out of Usenet.

However they do provide an introduction to the world’s biggest social network, Usenet, as well as an opportunity to test out newsgroups. Once the test period is over and you have learned all about it, we would strongly advise a paying subscription to a Premium Usenet Servers like NewsHosting which offers very low annual prices ($99). This will get you long retention, SSL, the whole range of binary and text groups and rapid connection speeds.

NGProvider has listed the different kinds of free access for you:

  • Free Usenet access
  • Free trial offers
  • Usenet access via your ISP

1- Free Usenet access

Free Usenet servers only provide a glimpse into the wide world of Usenet. There are some servers (Just4toady, Binload, XSusenet) and Usenet Servers using IPv6 that do offer free access, but it is limited and includes restrictions.
Just for occasional users, although we would recommend a block account for infrequent usage but with better quality. Find more detailed description on our page: Free Usenet Newsgroup Access - (List updated regularly)

2- Free trial offers

NGProvider has made a full list of all the free trial offers from different Usenet subscription services. We have divided these offers into three categories:

- Premium Usenet servers that require payment details upfront (but no risk)
- Usenet servers that need just an email or SMS validation
- Other servers that need payment details

Why try these offers ?

- Test and discover newsgroups
- Evaluate and compare Usenet servers through different free trials

Either way, don’t forget:

- If you only want the free trial, make sure to cancel at the end of the trial period (and don’t go over the authorised GB limit of total data transfers) or you will be debited for a full subscription!

- We would strongly advise against the free trial offers that propose 300GB free data - if you forget to cancel at the end of the trial period you will be charged the most expensive subscription.
These Usenet servers use the free trial period with a tempting amount of GB to attract future users. But once the trial period is up the subscription will cost a lot more than most competitors. And these servers emphasise the commercial side forgetting that the usenet service provider (USP) provides access to a network (with a binary hierachy as well as text) since 1979 and not just to content! Finally, some users have complained that their cancellation requests were ignored and that instead they were automatically signed up to an annual subscription.

3- ISP News servers

Originally all internet service providers managed and offered usenet access through their own networks: all of them maintained their own news servers. Due to growing costs (network and server charges from a larger feed and increased data) and advanced technology (retention, flie completion, ssl) outsourcing usenet access (news.isp.com) to a Usenet Service Provider (USP) has become more profitable. This also allows reduced hardware costs..

Gradually ISPs have outsourced their usenet access to a third party (Giganews - Highwinds) through their News address: news.isp.com

But in the last 5 years ISPs have been reducing newsgroup access; restricting the numbers of groups; limiting retention; controlling download limit; and suppressing the binary hierarchy.

Some have simply eliminated the possibility by blocking access: WOW! - ATT - Time Warner - Cox - Verizon and Sprint. The classic model of ISP + outsourced USP seems to be disappearing.

Are there any ISPs left that still offer Usenet access as part of their subscription? YES

NGProvider has listed these ISPs with Usenet access by country ( USA - UK - Canada - Australia - Holland- Belgium - France) as well as a list of their technical qualities. They tend to have a reduced service compared to the original provider: less retention - capped speed - no SSL.

The only ISP that still manages their own network and offers Usenet access is FREE at news.proxad.net included for no extra charge with their internet service

In conclusion: while ISP-provided news servers are OK for getting started, there are Premium Usenet News Providers that provide much more content and higher reliability.

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