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NNTP vs Web Forums

Last week we went live with our new website, which is implemented using DotNetNuke.

When we were looking into what to use to develop our web portal, the issue of the news server web interface came up often and was something we spent a lot of time discussing in the office. The web interface does not integrate with DNN, and that presented a problem. While we do have a lot of people using the news server with nntp clients such as outlook express and thunderbird, we found that the majority were using the web interface. In the office, the consensus was that while we ourselves prefer to use a newsreader (I monitor a bunch of different newsgroups on different servers and find it very convenient), the majority of our customers either prefer the web interface or are forced to use it because of nntp restrictions in their corporate environment.

We considered developing a DNN forums module to sit over the top of our nntp server, however that would distract us from our core business. We considered paying another party to develop the module but that proved to be cost prohibitive. So the decision was taken to use a commercial forums module, and keep the the nntp server running but without it's web interface and with only a singe active group. It does mean we'll have to do double duty, monitoring both the forums and the news server. Hopefully we can keep everyone happy.

Perhaps in the future we can persuade the forums vendor to develop an nntp server module as well (not holding my breath though, it's not a simple thing to do).


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