Program configuration for Thunderbird

Make the following adjustments to use our news server:

Start Thunderbird as usual.

If you have not configured an e-mail account yet the "E-Mail Account Wizard" is started automatically. In that case please cancel the wizard if you only want to configure your new news account.

Now start the universal "Account Wizard" manually by selecting the Tools menu, then Account settings.

Menu: Tools - Account settings

A new window opens showing the accounts you have configured in Thunderbird. You can also change your settings here. Click Account Actions and then Add Other Account... here.

Account Settings - Add Account

The Account Wizard is started now. In the first dialog "New Account Setup" select Newsgroup account as type of account and click Next.

Account wizard: New Account Setup

In the second dialog "Identity" enter your real name in the Your Name and your e-mail address in the Email Address field. If you have configured an account in Thunderbird before, this information might be already filled in. Click Next.

Account wizard: Identity

In the next dialog "Server Information" enter the name of our server News.CIS.DFN.DE in the Newsgroup Server field. Click Next.

Account wizard: Server Information

In the following dialog "Account Name" you can assign a short name to the account you have just created. The server name is the default, but you can change it if you wish. We have chosen "NetNews". Click Next.

Account wizard: Account Name

In the last dialog of the account wizard you see a summary of your settings. If they are correct, click Finish to save them and to close the wizard. The configuration is not complete yet.

Account wizard: Final dialog

You can change the settings of the account you have created in the "Account Settings" window of Thunderbird. You can reach that window via the Tools menu, then Account settings and selecting the news server acount in the account list.

Account Settings

With Thunderbird it is possible to encrypt your connection to our server. To do so click on Server Settings for your newly created News-Account and then choose "SSL/TLS" as the "Connection security". This Option is not required in order to establish a connection but helps to make the communication to our server more secure.

Furthermore, check the option "Always request authentication when connecting to this server" in order to prevent connections problems with some versions of Thunderbird.

Account settings: Server Settings

Posting an HTML formatted article is accepted in a few newsgroups only. Therefore, make sure that in Composition & Addressing the Compose messages in HTML format option is not checked. Click OK, this will close the "Account Settings" window.

Account Settings: Composition & Addressing

Now it is time to establish a connection to our news server. Select the account for the server from the left panel of Thunderbird's main window. Click Manage newsgroup subscriptions in the right area. Alternatively, click the File menu, then Subscribe.

Subscribe newsgroups

Now Thunderbird opens a connection to our server and downloads of the entire list of newsgroups. This may take some time.

Subscribe: Downloading list of newsgroups

You can browse the list of hierarchies and subhierarchies by clicking the plus or minus sign or by double-clicking the hierarchy name. You can subscribe a group by checking the box right of its name. Click OK when you are done.

Subscribe: Selecting group

Your subscribed groups appear beneath the account name.

List of newsgroups

To read articles in a group click the group name in that list. Thunderbird will retrieve the available articles. When fetching articles for the first time Thunderbird asks you for the username and the password.

Storing your account information in the news reader's configuration is a potential security risk. If you are unsure, please refer to our FAQ at

It is not necessary to enter a password if your institution is a member of the institutional access scheme (Anwenderzulassung) and you are accessing the server from your institution's network.

Prompt for username

Note that you cannot see the password while you enter it.

Prompt for password

After successful authentication you can read the articles in the selected newsgroups. During the initial connection Thunderbird might ask to download a limited number of header lines only. Additionally you can mark all older articles "read" that are available on the server. Click Download to retrieve the header lines for that newsgroups.

Get header lines

Now you can read and write articles via our server.

Read news articles