Hogwasher Mail and News Reader

I downloaded Hogwasher to review its newsreader capabilities. I'm uninterested in using it for mail (I use Gmail), so that function will be entirely ignored in this review. If the links for Inbox, Outbox etc. annoy you, you can hide them in "Preferences->Browser"

If you are going to use Hogwasher for news, pay very close attention: the default setting is to download 30,000 messages from each newsgroup you subscribe to. While the groups may not have 30,000 messages, they may have far more than you want, and if you get too many, you'll end up with a spinning beach ball for just about anything involving the newsgroups.

To avoid this, pay attention to the grayed out areas in the subscription box shown below:

view of hogwasher newsgroups screen

Click on either of the boxes to set a lower article count or to just ignore older articles. Do this BEFORE you connect to the server to get articles.

I was surprised that Hogwasher gloms all the groups together into one header listing. At first I found that very confusing; I prefer to read one newsgroup entirely before moving to another. However, this arrangement does have other advantages, and I found that if I added the "Newsgroup" column (Preferences->Columns->Subscriptions->Newsgroup), I could sort by that column and be happy.

When you click on a threaded message, Hogwasher displays the article, but also displays a thread window:

view of hogwasher thread box

This window is very convenient for tracing through a complicated thread quickly.

Hogwasher also has a nice little "Snippets" feature that lets you save text to be inserted into postings and messages. Of course it also has signatures, selectable identities, filters, and a security section that would let you set this up for someone else to use while denying access to certain functions.

At $49.00, Hogwasher is reasonably priced. The trial version is complete, but limited to 60 days.

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