Reticule is an NNTP server, but not a Usenet News server.

Usenet is a bunch of news servers connected together via various means. They generally allow people to post articles to them, and they have rules for how these articles are passed along to other servers. You might think of Usenet as a pretty loose, massively redundant (yet still somewhat fuzzy) distribution system, with no controlling central system.

This is not what Reticule does. Reticule is the future news server to be used by Gmane. Gmane is basically a bidirectional mail gateway. It has one single article injection point, and is organized as a hub around this single server.

Reticule supports all the normal NNTP commands, so all news clients can be used to connect to Reticule servers. However, internally Reticule is quite different from other news servers.

  • All article numbers on all Reticule servers are kept in lock-step. This means that users can switch between different Reticule servers at will without invalidating their .newsrc files.

  • Usenet articles are immutable. Once they have arrived at a server, they remain the same until they are expired. Reticule articles may change at any time. This is mainly done to support retroactively cross-post articles between groups, as well as cross-posting to the spam identification groups.

  • When articles are posted to bidirectional groups, they are passed along to the main Reticule hub. This hub will then reject or pass the message on to the mailing list in question. At no time does any normal Reticule server actually accept messages into its spool from users. All the messages are fed from the central hub.