Page Contents

MT-NewsWatcher 3.5.2

MT-NW 3.5.2 includes these new features:

Secure News

Added support for news over SSL (snews), configurable via the server settings in the News Servers dialog.

Secure Mail

Added support for SMTP authentication, and SMTP over TLS and SSL, configurable via the Mail Server tab in the Personalities dialog.

Passwords Stored in Keychain

MT-NW can now store news and mail passwords in your Keychain, and not in its preferences file.

Search Integration

The context menus in article and message windows now have items to search in Google, look up a word in Dictionary, and search using Spotlight (on Tiger). Spelling-related items are now also available in message window context menus.

More reliable binary extraction

This version contains fixes for several bugs relating to binary extraction. Extraced binaries will no longer produced corrupted files, and the process will use less memory.

Bug fixes and other changes

  • Added the ability to create filters via AppleScript.
  • Removed the ability to base a personality on an Internet Config profile, since IC is deprecated in the OS.
  • The "User agent" header no longer contains "Intel" on PowerPC machines.
  • Build PPC with gcc 3.3 so that it's compatible with pre-10.3.9 systems.
  • Fixed the "Print" menu item.
  • Authentication via GSS (Kerberos) now works again.
  • Fixed SOCKS connection error on Intel.
  • Fixed a bug that caused extracted binaries to be corrupted sometimes.
  • Fixed a bug that caused files created by cancelled binary extraction tasks to not be deletable.
  • Improved error reporting when extracting binaries.
  • You can now Copy from the binary extraction Log window
  • Fixed memory leaks when extracting binaries.
  • Now use long filenames when dragging msgs from subject window to Finder.
  • JPEG images now display millions of colors, which fixes color banding issues.
  • Fixed some issues enabling menu items on the "Shared Newsrc" submenu.
  • Fixed a bug that caused some window positions to be restored incorrectly on Intel (this was most apparent with the Log window, and I believe was responsible for a nasty hang when extracting binaries on Intel machines).
  • Fixed an issue that caused MT-NW to complain that some URL helpers (like Fetch) are too old to use.

MT-NewsWatcher 3.5.1

MT-NewsWatcher 3.5.1 is now built as a Universal Mach-O binary.

  • The "Mark as not junk" menu item works for article windows now.
  • Fixed the display font for UTF-8 messages to use the font prefs, rather than default to 9pt Monaco.
  • Fixed file type/creator reversal when saving binaries.
  • The Advanced dialog in the binary extration prefs has a sensible title now.
  • The "Index article text" feature was removed, pending migration to the new SearchKit API.
  • Fixed an odd behaviour clicking on the radio buttons in the filter edit dialog for a date filter.
  • Fixed a linkage issue that could cause library errors on launch on some machines (GSS-related).
  • Fixed some minor message window layout issues (helpful for translators).
  • Accented characters are no longer stripped when pasting.
  • When bringing up the Spelling panel with a misspelled word selected, it no longer goes to the next misspelled word.
  • MT-NW will now try to authenticate when requested in more situations, making it less necessary to use the 'Always authenticate' option.
  • Underscores ('_') will no longer be converted to spaces in message with a Content-Transfer-Encoding of Quoted-Printable.
  • Fixed some bugs relating to Smart cut and paste in message editing.
  • Fixed a bug in the MIME header decoding exposed by articles with "=???" in a header.
  • Fixed filters matching whole or part words.
  • Option double-click in the filters window now toggles the disabled state of all selected filters.
  • The "Send message with encoding" popup in the Languages prefs now correctly lists all of the available sending encodings.
  • You can use Command-option-B to extract binaries to a custom folder now.
  • Fixed a bad bug that cause extracting binaries with external helpers to be broken, and possibly delete folders on disk.
  • Improved the error reporting when there's a problem saving the filters file.
  • Hopefully work around an issue saving the filters file if the user doesn't have permission to create a temporary file on the same volume.
  • Added an 'Import' menu item that's enabled when the Filters List window is frontmost that allows you to import XML filters files, with the option to add to or replace existing filters.

MT-NewsWatcher 3.4

MT-NW 3.4 includes these new features:

Junk filtering

  • Implemented junk (aka spam) filtering using Bayesian rules. This is a learning spam filter that makes guesses about what is spam based on the frequency with which various tokens (words or patterns) show up in junk and non-junk messages. It needs training: initially, it marks all messages as junk to encourage training. To train, mark messages as "Junk" or "not Junk" using the commands on the Filters menu. Junk filtering is applied via a filter, which can be edited just like other filters. MT-NW makes a new junk filter for you.

Spell checking

  • Implemented support for inline spell checking using the Cocoa spell checker (requires 10.2 or later). To enable this in a message window, go to the "Spelling" submenu at the bottom of the Edit menu, and choose "Check Spelling As You Type".

Email autocomplete

  • Added support for email address autocompletion in message windows, using email addresses from the Mac OS X Address Book (requires 10.2 or later). This is controllable via the emailAddressAutocomplete user defaults setting.

User Interface

  • Added a wizard to introduce new features in this version. Added a Help menu item to show that wizard at any time.
  • Changed "Sort priority" to "Score" in various places in the filtering UI to standardize terminology.
  • Moved the "Get group list from host" and "Send group list to host" menu items into a submenu at the bottom of the Special menu, to reduce the amount of confusion from users who find these, and think they are related to getting the full groups list from the news server.
  • Added a button to the font prefs to reset all the screen or printer fonts to defaults.
  • Removed the "Don't cover finder icons" checkbox, since it's mostly redundant on Mac OS X. That setting now default to true (since screens are bigger than they were).
  • Added the ability to use the old keyboard shortcuts (e.g. Command-M for Mark as Read). This is controlled by the useSystemKeyboardShortcuts user defaults setting, and can be changed via the "About New Features" item in the Help menu (and the wizard that runs when you use this version for the first time). When using the system-standard keyboard shortcuts, added Command-, as shortcut for Preferences, and allow the the OS to handle Command-` and Command-Shift-` for cycling through open windows.


  • Switched to the PCRE regular expression library, which helps solve some awful performance issues with expressions containing lots of groupings (which are often not required), and adds support for perl-style regular expressions, including support for \d (digit), \w (word characters), \s (whitespace), z{2,4} (from two to four repeats of 'z') and more. See for details.


  • Improved the peformance of marking crossposts read from the subject or article windows.

Binary handling

  • When extracting binaries errors now go into a log window, rather than throwing up dialogs. The Log Window is now accessible via the Windows menu.
  • Added checkboxes to the "Viewing Binaries" prefs panel for opening downloaded archives (.sit, .gz etc), and other download files. Executables and script files won't be opened.
  • Added buttons to sort the contents of the "Extract binaries manually" dialog by article number and subject. Also, the size and location of the "Extract binaries manually" dialog is now remembered between runs.
  • Added support for long filenames when saving article binaries from the article window.
  • Added a preference (under the viewing binaries prefs) to turn off binary part caching. In the days of binary newsgroups with 100,000+ articles, it no longer makes much sense to keep a cache of headers (the "article cache" that so often got corrupted) of articles which are incomplete parts of multi-part binaries. It causes prefs file bloat, and opening binary groups very slow. So now you can turn it off (and it's off by default).
  • Added a preference to turn off the behavior where images are scaled to the article window size.
  • Moved binary helpers into their own Advanced dialog in the prefs, with a checkbox to use the old external decoders in preference to the new internal ones.


  • Increased the max fetch threshold to 100,000, and fixed related bugs.
  • Added support for Kerberos GSS authentication. Added UI in news servers dialog to allow the user to choose the authentication type.

The following bug fixes were made in MT-NW 3.4: This list contains bug fixes since 3.3b1 (the last public release).

Binaries/Helper apps

  • Fixed a crash that could happen when Launch Services finds the wrong helper application for URL dispatching.
  • Fixed an issue with launching the browser for http:// links; MT-NW will now respect the default browser setting on Mac OS X (although you might have problems if you have a Mozilla and Netscape 7.1 build on your machine, since NS 7.1 has an incorrect creator code in its PkgInfo file).
  • Fixed a bug that caused binary extraction to fail for binary threads that have zero articles.
  • Fixed another bug that caused binary extraction to fail when the zeroth article has MIME text/plain headers.
  • Fixed the -1411 errors on extracting BinHex binaries.
  • Improved error reporting when decoding binaries; malformed MIME will now display an error.


  • Re-enabled typing via input methods (TSM), which also fixes some external spell-checkers.
  • The 'try smart decoding' pref (also Group Setting) now controls whether subject lists appear in a font suited to the non-roman articles in the list (which is a frequent complaint), as well as article decoding.
  • Fixed a text wrapping issue in message windows with some double-byte text.
  • Fixed a bug where stripping form feeds and non-printable characters would garble double-byte text on reply. Quoting should no longer garble double-byte text. Also tweaked quoting code to avoid quoting redundant empty lines at the end of a post.
  • Fixed a bug that caused the title of a message window to show "o subject" for some encodings.

Panther issues

  • Fixed a couple of Panther compatibility issues, one of which caused various window to show large blank areas.
  • Fixed some TEC issues on Panther that showed up as hangs when decoding EU-KR, and failure to decode Big5.


  • User interface
    • Tweaked some dialog layouts to fix issues with text truncation.
    • Worked around a codegen bug that caused the floating tasks window to remain hidden after showing the Nav Services dialog to choose a folder.
    • Worked around a Window Manager bug that caused the floating tasks window to disappear if another window was created while a modal dialog caused floating windows to be hidden.
    • Fixed string drawing in lists in personalities and news server dialogs to use anti-aliased text
    • Fixed a bug that caused odd line-wrapping in the message window on lines with coloured URLs, and a wrapping bug that caused quoted text not to be rewrapped if the text to be quoted contained no linebreaks.
    • Added scrollwheel support for custom lists, and scrolling text fields in dialogs (and fixed some drawing issues).
    • Fixed a bug that caused random strings to show up in the servername field in the new user dialog.
    • Fixed some cosmetic issues drawing the header in filters, article and text windows, and when redrawing the keyboard focus ring.
    • Fixed an issue with checkbox enabling in the filter prefs panel.
    • Fixed a bug with the zooming of the full groups window.
    • Fixed a bug that caused some application menu commands to be incorrectly enabled.
    • Fixed a bug that would allow you to quit with modified message windows open, after a previous cancelled quit.
    • Fixed a nasty bug that caused crashes if you opened a group 'by date' from the full groups list.
    • Fixed a bug that caused crashes while building the threads for a new subject window.
    • Improved the new user experience for users on a news server that requires authentication. Rather than failing to download the full groups list with an error, it now puts up the username/password dialog, with an option to save the password.
    • Reworked the Group Filters dialog to use a different list widget, so that the lists now respond to scrollwheel events, and don't have drawing issues.
    • Improved typing performance in message windows by doing the URL hilighting at idle time, rather than on each keypress. This also helps with caret visibility while typing fast.
    • Hopefully fixed a bug that caused the text labels in the status window to go bad.
    • Checks for new articles now happen with collapsed group windows too.
    • Fixed some issues in the Speech Recognition prefs panel, with list drawing and click handling.
    • Fixed the drawing of the Mail-Copies-To popup in the message window.
    • Tweaked some code that tries to make the menu hilight obvious when typing a keyboard shortcut to make some editing options more responsive.
  • Filtering
    • MT-NW now shows a more useful error message when the compilation of a regular expression fails during filtering.
    • MT-NW will now warn you if you try to filter on a header that is not indexed by the server, and the server is returning "(none)" for the header, rather than returning an error (Giganews does this).
    • Fixed a couple of issues with drag-importing filter text clippings. Filters applying to all newsgroups work, dragging from a message or article window works, and error reporting is slightly improved.
  • Networking
    • Fixed a timeout error (seen with Giganews) that caused idle connections to simply stall.
  • Apple Events
    • Implemented support for the "saving yes" and "saving in" params to the quit and close Apple Events.
  • Plugins
    • Worked a around a QuickTime bug that caused the inline playing of VBR MP3s to stop early.
    • If you open a thread with a MPEG or MP3, close the article window, then reopen it, MT-NW will now correctly re-render the movie (getting it from the cache).
  • Other
    • If MT-NW finds a broken alias to a prefs file on startup, it will now warn, delete the alias, and create new prefs (rather than writing resources to the alias file).