What is Network News Transfer Protocol?

What is Network News Transfer Protocol?

What is Network News Transfer Protocol?

What is Network News Transfer Protocol?

What is Network News Transfer Protocol? NNTP – Protocol to connect Usenet Newsgroups to the Internet

Usenet has been around for more than 3 decades, and it has improved a lot over the years. In the early days of Usenet, it was using the UUCP protocol, but later on, it was switched to the advanced NNTP protocol, which played an important role in Usenet’s success. Today we will discuss the NNTP, a protocol that connects the Usenet Newsgroups to the Internet. In this comprehensive guide, we will tell you everything you need to know about the NNTP. Let’s dive right into it.

What is NNTP?

What is Network News Transfer Protocol? NNTP or Network News Transfer Protocol is a TCP/IP transfer protocol for the Usenet. The main purpose of this protocol is to transfer the news from one network to another to ensure that the Usenet users have access to the latest news and Articles. 

The Brief History of NNTP

What is Network News Transfer Protocol?

When the Usenet came into existence, it used the Unix-to-Unix Copy Protocol (UUCP) to share the Articles with its readers. Users would have to log into Computers to read the Articles where the Articles were already stored in the local disk. 

However, as Usenet became more popular, there was a need for a new protocol that would allow the users to access the Usenet remotely. That’s when the NNTP came into existence to exchange the Articles between the different Usenet Servers worldwide. The first use of NNTP dates back to 1986, but the protocol has been revised several times over the last 2 decades to make it more efficient. Easynews offers an Unlimited NNTP feature be sure to check out our review.

How Does the NNTP Works?

Network News Transfer Protocol (NNTP) is basically the rules that allow the newsreaders to interact with the servers to retrieve the Articles from the newsgroups. Now, NNTP communicates with the Usenet Server using the various commands which are pre-defined.  The following are the popular Commands in NNTP.

  • ARTICLE – This command get an Article from the Usenet Servers
  • GROUP – This command allows the Newsreader to select a specific Newsgroup.
  • IHAVE – This command tells the Usenet Server that the user has an Article that may be wanted by the Server.
  • LIST – This command allows the Newsreader to bring the list of all available Newsgroups on the Usenet Server.
  • NEWSGROUPS – This command brings the list of all newsgroups created after a specific date and time.
  • NEWNEWS – This command brings the list of all Articles created after a specific date and time.
  • NEXT – This command brings tells the Newsreader to move to the next message in the newsgroup
  • POST – This command posts the message or reply to the existing thread

These are some of the most popular NNTP Commands, and these commands are usually handled by the Newsreader. So, most of the time, you won’t have to deal with them, and you will able to access the Usenet by interacting with the User Interface.

So, when the Newsreader sends an NNTP request to the Server, it expects an NNTP Reply. The Newsreader uses TCP-Port 119 for this communication, and this port is reserved for only this type of communication. Once the request is received, the Newsreader displays it to the user on the GUI. The Server also assigns the unique Message-ID to each message or Articles received through the communication, which allows the Usenet user to respond to the Message or Article. The whole purpose of NNTP is to ensure that Usenet users have access to Usenet remotely. 


What is the difference between the NNTP and SMTP?

The primary purpose of both protocols is very same. The SMTP protocol is used for sending emails over the Internet, and the NNTP protocol is used for transferring Articles & News between the Usenet Servers over the Internet. 

What does NNTP Server Status 4XX mean?

What is Network News Transfer Protocol?

NNTP Server Status 4XX means that the Server has received the message but couldn’t execute the message request. 

What does NNTP Server Status 3XX mean?

NNTP Server Status 3XX means the Server has received the message, but the message is unclear, and it requires further information to successfully execute the message request.

Who created the NNTP?

NNTP protocol was created by Brian Kantor and Phil Lapsley of the University of California.

Which protocol uses TCP Port 119?

The TCP port 119 is a well-known port that is reserved for the NNTP Protocol. The protocol may also use the TCP Port 433 (also known as NNSP) if it needs to transfer the bulk of articles from one Usenet Server to Another. 

Do I need a VPN for Usenet?

Normally you can access the Usenet without the VPN, but if you care about your privacy and you want to ensure that your ISP provider or any other entity doesn’t track your activities, you should use the VPN. VPN ensures that all the communication from your computer is totally encrypted, and it provides a temporary identity that ensures that no one could track your online activities. If you are interested in getting a VPN, you can check our top VPN picks


That concludes our discussion about What is Network News Transfer Protocol?  In this guide, you learned about the NNTP protocol, how the NNTP protocol works, and other details to help you understand the protocol. If you have any questions, please check our FAQ section, where we have shared the answers to common questions. If you are looking for a reliable Usenet Service, make sure to check our Top Usenet Services. We recommend the Easynews & UsenetServer  as both services offer top of the line features and impeccable service. You can check the reviews of both services Best Usenet Service Provider Review