NZB Completion Checker Supports Multiple Servers

April 2012 update – check out the latest NZB Completion Checker release.  NZBcc alpha supports SSL and multiple news servers, has a password checker, HEAD and STAT validation methods, and will allow you to toggle servers between active and inactive.  Learn more about NZBcc alpha and download it here.

We’re excited to share some new developments in one of our favorite Usenet tools, NZB Completion Checker.  The latest release of NZB Completion Checker, also known as NZBCC, includes support for multiple news servers.  A really cool addition for those who use more than one Usenet provider or in some cases multiple news servers from the same provider.  In addition to connecting to multiple servers you can also configure alternate SSL ports in the new version.  You can learn more about NZBCC and download it free here.

Configuring Multiple News Servers in NZB Completion Checker

After downloading the new NZBCC version 0.9 you’ll need to set up your news servers.  Those who have used NZBCC in the past will notice their servers are gone.  Without going into detail the developer decided to change up the configuration and store the information in a separate encrypted file.  So you’ll need to add your servers.

To add new servers to NZBCC open the program and click on the Setting button.  On the screen to follow just click on the first icon to the left ‘Add new server’.  From there you can add your username and password along with SSL preference and port number.  Then give the server a name and set the number of connections.

If you take a look at the top left you’ll notice we configured both UNS and Astraweb.  With UNS as our primary server.  As a quick note we tried testing with the full 20 connections but NZBCC gave some errors so we pulled back a bit.  Setting both UNS and Astraweb back to 5 connections.  Achieving fast results.  Remember you’re not actually downloading the content but rather just checking that the items listed in the NZB file are complete.

After setting up and testing the UseNetServer and Astraweb servers we visited and downloaded a Ubuntu NZB file.  Then we selected the NZB file from the NZBCC home screen and clicked Start.  The program took less that a minute to check the 780 MB file.  You can check out the results below.

As you can see our Ubuntu NZB was 100% complete.  Since the download won’t require any PAR files you can let NZB Completion Checker rewrite your NZB file.  To set that up just go into the settings and click on the NZB Rewrite checkbox.  You can also set the file paths for the files.  This feature will save you time and bandwidth.

We definitely recommend you give NZB Completion Checker a try.  Head on over and download the latest version of NZBCC free from the developer’s site.  Remember the app is still in Alpha stage so you might run into some unexpected errors.  If so share them along with suggestions to help this useful app get even better.

Visit Newsgroup Reviews to learn more about Usenet.  Follow us @NewsgroupRevs for the latest news.

Usenet Completion Guide : NZB Completion Checker

We’ve probably all been there one time or another.  You queue up a large download and wait in anticipation for it to complete.  Only to find out in the end that the file isn’t complete and there aren’t enough PAR files for repair.  The problem is compounded for those with limited bandwidth.

The terms “Usenet completion” or “completion rate” are thrown around all the time on sites like Newsgroup Reviews.  We use them in articles, guides and reviews without giving much thought to explaining their meaning.  Yet those new to Usenet may not understand the importance of completion.  In simple terms completion is the percentage of posts a Usenet provider has stored compared to the total posts available.

Using a simple example let’s say you’re about to download the latest version of Ubuntu.  You start by searching for an NZB file via newsreader or a favorite NZB site.  Once you have the file you open it in your Usenet client and begin the download.  The download starts as expected and shows that you have 24 files to download.  After some time the download completes.  Now it’s time to use WinRAR or similar tool to unRAR the archive.  The only problem is the files are damaged.  You try to use QuickPar to fix the problem but there aren’t enough PAR files or blocks for repair.  The result is that you just wasted a lot of time and perhaps paid usage on a block or metered Usenet account for nothing.  The only thing more annoying is completing the download only to find the file is password protected.  We’ll save the password topic for another time.

The moral to our story is that you want to choose a Usenet provider that offers good completion.  For those new to Usenet it’s almost impossible to determine without testing services.  To help we offer a section dedicated to free Usenet trials along with an Editors Choice section.  The award winners have been tested and provide solid completion along with high retention, performance and reliability.

Even if you choose an excellent Usenet provider you will still have completion issues from time to time.  It’s not always the provider’s fault.  At times the person posting will have issues that lead to incomplete posts.  Not to mention the possibility of DMCA takedown requests.  So how can you test an NZB file before you spend all that time downloading?  In comes NZB Completion Checker.

NZB Completion Checker

We noticed the freeware tool back in January and recently had a chance to test it out.  The application requires Microsoft .NET 4 which is a free download (about 43 MB) if you don’t already have it installed (we didn’t).  After the install the setup is very simple.  Checking a 750+ MB Ubuntu NZB for completion took about a minute using UseNetServer with 20 connections.  The results were then displayed in a nice dashboard format.

Before using the software be aware there are some limitations.  First of which the app is in beta so bugs are to be expected.  Also the current version does not support SSL connections.  So you have to use a non-SSL port to check for completion in the utility.  Of course you can still use SSL to download the files in your newsreader.

The download and installation of NZB Completion Checker is a breeze.  If you don’t have Microsoft .NET Framework version 4 or you’re not sure don’t worry about it.  The installation will let you know otherwise and provides a link to the MS site for download.  After installing NZB Completion Checker you are just a couple steps from verifying file completion.  Simply enter your news server address, port (normally 119).  Remember NZBcc does not support SSL.  Then enter your username and password.  Next click on the folder icon and choose the NZB file you’d like to check for completion.  Click start and let NZBcc do the rest.

We loaded a Ubuntu NZB file for testing.  NZB Completion Checker took about a minute to process the files.  Once completed we were presented with a dashboard screen showing the results.  In this case our NZB file was 100% complete.  As you can see in the following image.

We ran a couple more tests to ensure NZBcc would catch missing or incomplete parts.  Compared to downloading the entire files and checking them with QuickPar.  NZBcc performed well in every test.

Download NZB Completion Checker free from the developer’s site or Softsea.  As always if you enjoy the application please consider donating to the developer.